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What Should Be At The Top Of Your Resume

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How to write the best resume | What you should put on your resume to get hired

Cant figure out how to tell your whole story on one page, or want to be able to include some visual examples of your work? Instead of trying to have your resume cover everything, cover the most important details on that document, and then include a link to your personal website, where you can dive more into what makes you the ideal candidate.

Hard Skills Vs Soft Skills In Your Resume

There are endless skills that you can include on any resume, and you have to decide which ones will be the most effective. There are hard, industry-specific technical skills, as well as soft skills that every job demands.

Hard skills are technical abilities that are specific to a particular job and are often measurable. For software developers, their set of hard skills would include specific programming languages. Soft skills are personal skills or creative abilities that can come naturally or be strengthened over time. Some examples of soft skills are adaptability, self-motivation, people skills, time management, and the ability to work under pressure.

Some great skills employers love to see on your resume if you are looking for remote work are: written and verbal communication, the ability to work independently, time and task management, organization, comfort with technology, and specific knowledge of remote communication tools like Zoom, Skype, Dropbox, Google Suite, etc., shared Toni Frana, FlexJobs expert career coach.

Lets take a closer look at the skills section for your resume.

Note: FlexJobs is the longtime leader in helping job seekers find the highest-quality remote, work-from-home, hybrid, and flexible jobs. You can to our database of hand-screened job listings, as well as job search and career webinars, and many other great resources! Learn today howFlexJobs can empower your job search!

Include Keywords From The Original Job Posting

One of the best ways to make your resume stand out is to use the job posting as a guide. Schweikert says that she often tells people that is the first place they should look when revamping their resume.

Weve written the job description with certain words, Schweikert says. And when we see a resume with those words on it, those are the resumes that instantly get our attention.

Some companies actually conduct keyword searches when sorting through resumes, Schweikert adds, which means those terms are even more important to include if you want to secure an interview. It may sound tedious, but taking the time to customize your resume for each individual job you apply to is a surefire tactic to stand out among the pack of applicants, she says.

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+ Effective Resume Examples

Knowing how to write a resume is one thing, actually creating a resume that stands out is something else entirely. Without inspiration, even top career experts might stumble on a roadblock or two.

Check out the following effective resume examples to get a better sense of what a good resume looks like…

Want to see more examples? Check out our compilation of 20+ resume examples for different fields.

Arrange Your Contact Information

What Your Resume Should Look Like in 2018

Now that you know the format youre going to use, its time to start your resume. First things first, employers need to know who you are and how to contact you.

List the following contact details in your resume header at the top of the page:

  • Name
  • Telephone number
  • Email address
  • Link to online portfolio
  • LinkedIn profile

Traditionally, you would also include your mailing address on your resume. However, this is no longer mandatory because most job applications are sent via email.

Here are two examples of how you can format your contact information section:

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Dont Put Everything On There

Your resume should not have every work experience youve ever had listed on it. Think of your resume not as a comprehensive list of your career history, but as a marketing document selling you as the perfect person for the job. For each resume you send out, youll want to highlight only the accomplishments and skills that are most relevant to the job at hand . Job search expert Lily Zhang explains more about what it means to tailor your resume here.

How To Select A Font

Select a font from the dropdown list at the top of your document before you start writing your resume.

  • Type your resume.
  • Highlight the resume.
  • Either select the font from the pop-up window or select the font from the list at the top of the document.
  • Select the font size you want to use the same way.

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Describe Your Achievements Using Numbers And Percentages To Back Them Up

When possible, you should back up your achievements with numbers and percentages.

This is how you show the employer that youre a high-achiever.

To show you how this looks in practice, lets take an example of an achievement for a customer support agent:

Increased customer support ticket closing satisfaction rate

While this is definitely a good start, it doesnt actually mean anything. Anyone could say theyve done this – but theres a huge difference between someone who increased the satisfaction rate by 0.5%, and by 30%.

What if you rephrased it as:

Increased customer support ticket closing satisfaction rate from 47% to 72% within 3 months.

Now, this is a lot more actionable. The hiring manager can see how good you are, and how youd be an asset for the company.

In this case, its instantly clear that you know what youre doing, and your resume goes directly to the YES pile.

How Do You Choose The Skills To List On A Resume

Should you have a profile, summary, or objective at the top of your resume?

Heres the deal.

You know what youre good at. You know the things you grew up doing as a kid, or the things you learned in school , or the activities you did after school .

So you should already have a list of things that you would consider yourself proficient in.

This is a good place to start.

Here are the steps for choosing the right skills:

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Customize Your Resume For Your Industry

People are often encouraged to include personality in their resume, but unless they are applying for a job in a creative industry, they may want to rethink that strategy. A lot of pictures and fonts and colors and a whole lot of personality just doesnt align with the jobs we have here, says Schweikert, whose team recruits for positions in sales, product and marketing. If I was in an organization that, for example, was in web design, then I would want to see those design elements in a resume.

Kim agrees that resume layout is wholly dependent on the position you are applying for. If you are applying for a designer role, I want to see something creative there. If youre applying for a finance role, I want to see numbers, she says.

Relevant Social Media Handles

LinkedIn

Many companies nowadays ask for a Linkedin profile when you apply for a job.

Your chances of getting hired will be greater if you as your resume.

In very specific cases, you can also include your Twitter profile .

Some marketing jobs ask for an existing social following, for example. In others, you could use it to display your witty, under-20-characters writing skills.

Quora

Quora questions and answers cover a wide range of business topics nowadays.

Are you an expert at giving business advice with 100+ answers on the topic? You can show your authority by linking your Quora page.

StackOverflow

Mainly relevant for developers,coders, computer scientists.

Having a very active Stack overflow profile can give you a big boost if you code.

Github

Only for developers, coders, data scientists, etc.

Github is a great way to showcase your projects. Whether its a website you developed, or a mobile game, make sure to include it!

Medium

Freelancers, writers, bloggers, and entrepreneurs.

A rich medium profile can help you showcase your writing skills and personality before even getting to the interview or trial task.

Make sure to only put the relevant social media handles on your resume. If you are applying for a software development position, for example, your StackOverflow profile will be more relevant than your Twitter account.

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Craft A Career Snapshot

More recently, career experts have urged job seekers to do away with the old “objective” statement and instead consider including a brief summary, called a “career snapshot,” at the top of their resumes.

“With the career snapshot, you present a branding statement that briefly explains your unique value as well as your skills and qualifications,” said Tomer Sade, founder and CEO of FACTORE. “This would then be followed by a few bullet points that highlight your experience and your accomplishments. Whatever you list here should be relevant to the position you’re applying to.”

“The top third of your resume is prime resume real estate,” added Lisa Rangel, an executive resume writer and official LinkedIn moderator at Chameleon Resumes. “Create a robust summary to capture the hiring manager’s eye.”

Think of your career snapshot as an answer to the question “how would you describe your work experience in one sentence?” The summary is an opportunity to sum up your most relevant and important skills, experience, or assets right off the bat.

The Most Popular: A Reverse Chronological Resume

How To Write The Perfect Resume 3 Best Tips

As previously mentioned, a reverse chronological resume is preferred by many coaches and HR experts, mainly because its super readable. When everythings in a clear order, its easy to skim and even easier to draw lines between experiences.

Who its good for: Just about everyonefrom students applying to internships all the way up to senior-level executives

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Putting It All Together

So there you have it.

The most important thing to remember is to select skills that are relevant to the position you are interviewing for, and more important than that, skills that your company puts a tremendous amount of value in.

Once you get your skills straightened out, you should make sure that the rest of your resume is congruent with the skills you just selected, namely, that your experience shows that you both used those skills in a work environment and developed the skill with on-the-job tasks.

The next thing you should do is download our action list below!

Good Luck!

Whether Youre A Freshly Minted Graduate Or A Professional With Decades Of Experience Your Resume Should Include These Core Features

Make sure you include the top five resume sections.

Your resume is like a menuit shows employers what you have to offer. And just like a menu is broken into clear categories to make ordering easier on a diner, resume sections make it quicker for busy hiring managers to see if you’ve got what what they’re looking for.

To continue with the menu metaphor, a restaurant would be selling itself short if it left off any of the common offeringsappetizers or beverages, for example. Likewise, the core parts of a resume need to be clearly presented if you want to meet a hiring managers expectations.

Different resume sections speak to a variety of your qualifications. Granted, resumes will certainly vary depending on whether youre a recent graduate, changing careers, or looking to move up in leadership. But no matter what your level of experience isor what industry youre inexperts say the following are the core parts of a resume:

  • Contact information
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    Write A Winning Resume Introduction

    Placed at the top of your resume, a well-written resume introduction briefly introduces your key qualifications and skills, and convinces employers to continue reading your application.

    There are many different types of resume introductions used by job seekers today, including the:

  • Resume objective
  • Resume summary
  • However, the two most commonly used introduction styles are the resume objective and the resume summary.

    Keep Your Resume Short And Direct

    How to Write a Resume Summary – Plus 5 Strong Examples | Indeed Career Tips

    The No. 1 rule of writing a resume is to keep it short and to the point. The general rule is no more than one page unless you have a very good reason for it to be longer, like an extensive career or many highly applicable work experiences.

    Your resume should target the specific job you are applying for. Sending the same resume off to every job you apply for will be a detriment.

    “Don’t write a generic resume that could work for any job,” said Wes Lybrand, teacher and former assistant director at the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Career and Professional Development Services. Be sure to prioritize your skills and qualifications for each job you try to land. Your resume “should be focused, clear and concise.”

    An easy way to keep your resume trim is to only include recent, relevant experience. While that yearlong first or second job might have taught you a lot about the field, it’s not always necessary to include every detail from your entire career history.

    “If an experience noted on your resume is from prior to 2000, consider striking it,” said Jane Trnka, executive director of the Career Development Center at Rollins College’s Crummer Graduate School of Business. “The skills listed are probably not the most relevant to the work you are currently doing or plan to do in the future.”

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    How To Choose The Best Resume Format

    Now that weve covered all 3 of the common resume formats, youre probably wondering which ones the right for you.

    Heres what we recommend:

    In 99% of the cases, wed recommend going with a reverse-chronological resume format.

    In 2021, its the most common and useful format:

    • Applicant tracking systems can read it without any problems.
    • All recruiters and hiring managers are familiar with this format.
    • Whether youre a recent graduate or a senior professional, its the easiest format to work with.

    The only case wed recommend going with a functional or combination resume is if youre a career changer, and even then, its still quite risky.

    True, a combination or hybrid resume will help you emphasize your skills over work experience. However, both of these resume formats are not really that popular in 2021.

    Theres a good chance that the applicant tracking system wont be able to read your resume and automatically discard it – after all the time you put into creating the resume!

    At the same time, recruiters might just not be familiar with these resume formats, or think that youre just trying to hide the fact that youre not experienced, and disqualify you based on that.

    So, rule of thumb – when in doubt, go for the reverse-chronological resume.

    Looking for CV writing tips instead? Here’s our full guide on how to write a CV!

    Formatting And Spacing Guidelines

    If youre unsure of how to format your CV, its worth downloading a few CV templates to familiarise yourself. After all, formatting and spacing your CV is equally as important as the content.

    Here are some formatting and spacing tips to bear in mind:

    Length: The standard length of a CV in the UK is two pages. However, one size doesnt fit all, and so for some professionals, one or three pages may be more appropriate.

    Headings: Each section must be introduced by a big, bold heading to ensure an easy read.

    Font type: Most employers will receive your CV in a digital format, so choose a clear font like Calibri or Arial. You can use a different font type for your headings, but keep it professional and easy-to-read too.

    Font size and page margins: The body of your CV should be between 10 and 12 point font, and your headings between 14 and 18 points. Keep your page margins around 2.5cm, but never reduce them to less than 1.27cm or your CV will appear cluttered and hard to read. White space ensures clarity and professionalism.

    Proofreading and consistency: Your formatting must be consistent throughout your CV to keep it looking slick. Dont spoil your polished look by including typos and inaccuracies proofread like a pro to capture every mistake or invest in intelligent spellcheckers like Grammarly.

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    Simple Resume Writing Tips To Help You Stand Out

    Your resume is the most important document you’ll submit in your job search. It’s your front-line fighter, so to speak, as it’s your first opportunity to present yourself to a potential employer.

    A strong resume can help you stand out from the crowd, but a weak resume can remove you from the running, so you want to do all you can to make sure your resume is the best it can be.

    It can be difficult to succinctly present all of your experiences and qualifications, but there are many ways to spruce up your resume without going overboard. To help you land an interview, Business News Daily rounded up some of the experts’ best resume writing tips.

    Write A Matching Cover Letter

    Write your details on top of your resume. Write your mail...

    Now that you know how to write your dream resume, you might be wondering: is a cover letter necessary? The answer is yes, always include a cover letter if you have the option.

    Knowing how to write a good cover letter helps you round out every application you ever send out, and boosts your chances of landing an interview.

    Cover letters are a valuable tool in your job-hunting arsenal because they give you an opportunity to provide context to your resume, show off your personality, and express enthusiasm for the job youre applying for.

    Heres an example of what a resume paired with a matching cover letter might look like :

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