Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Basic Resume Writing

  • Do not write in 3rd person. Remember how we all learned that rule in High School? Stick with this basic grammar rule.
  • Keep your detailed job descriptions to the last 10 years. After that, just list the company names, your title and dates of employment. Or if you prefer, you can do a one page resume with just the last 10 years.
  • A two page resume is plenty of information about you. There is a reason why companies conduct interviews – to get to know more about you.
  • If you list your Facebook/LinkedIn/MySpace, etc. addresses make sure what is on that site is appropriate for your future employer to view.
  • Put your home address, email address, phone and cell on your resume.
  • Keep your resume format simple and do not use Times Roman type face. It’s a great type face but everyone uses it. You want to look a bit different from everyone else. Once you've picked a type face use just one. You can bold, italicize, increase the font size in places but keep it all the same type face. Keep it simple.
  • Make sure each page of your resume has a footer with your name, email address and phone number on it. Recruiters and HR people have occasionally been known to lose the first page of a resume and it’s usually the “perfect candidates” resume. Yes, oops, we occasionally have bad days.
  • Always explain what industry your company is in.
  • If you had 5 different titles under one employer put the employer, your current title and the total dates of employment at the top. Below the company name, preferably indented, break out the titles and the dates of each of your jobs.
  • If you are comfortable listing some of your personal interests put something fun and true, for example - I’m a member of the Surf Rider Foundation, I’m a 20 year member of whatever sorority you belonged to, I coach football. It gives us, the interviewer, something different to talk to you about besides all the rank and file information. But keep in mind, if your interests are unusual, like you eat only bugs, please, keep that to yourself.
  • Finally – no embellishments of your work record. List your accomplishments but do not indulge in any creative fictional accounts of your success.

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