Let’s break down the resume sections step-by-step: what you should write about yourself, how to format it right, and how to show off your work experience so employers are dying to hire you.
Put your name, phone number, and email in a couple of lines. Make your name bold or bigger for emphasis. Skip mentioning stuff like gender, date of birth, or where you’re from as this information falls under discrimination laws.
List your job history in reverse order, starting from the most recent to the earliest. Include the company name, when you worked there, and what your job title was. Then, give a quick rundown of your responsibilities with some examples of cool stuff you accomplished.
Company “X,” 01.01.2017–11.11.2017, Java Developer, project work.
I developed and launched an app that helps users follow a diet. The test version was released after three months. Another three months later, we got into the top 5 of the most well-received apps on Google Play.
Describe your responsibilities and accomplishments concisely, without focusing on your professional qualities. Limit your description to three to five sentences, but avoid merely listing general tasks without results. If you work as a copywriter, you can mention how many articles you typically write per month. An office manager can showcase how quickly they process incoming mail. And a cleaning specialist can specify how many hours it takes to tidy up a 300 m2 area.
If you have experience with well-known companies, explain what you did for them and how you helped them.
Avoid including experience that is unrelated to your new field and won’t help with your job tasks. For instance, if you worked as a barista in the past and now you’re a programmer, you can briefly mention that experience, no need to elaborate on it.
If you had a long gap in your work history, mention the reason. For example, if you took care of a sick family member, you can label it as “caregiving” or “volunteer work.”
You don’t need to describe work experience from organizations you worked at over 10 years ago. It’s enough to state the company name, job title, and the period you worked there.
This part is about the skills you need for the job you want. Back them up with real-life examples from work or school that show how useful you are to employers.
Tip: Carefully review the job listing and the requirements set by the employer. Your professional skills in the resume should align with those requirements.
For instance, if the employer is looking for a UI/UX designer, a big part of the required skills can only be demonstrated through a portfolio. However, separately explain why you made certain design decisions and the outcomes they led to. Describe how a change in button color increased the click-through rate.
Avoid listing skills or character traits without practical evidence, as they won’t benefit the employer. Favorite buzzwords like “quick learner,” “stress-resistant,” and “multitasking” are worth mentioning if you can back them up with real-life experiences.
Fast learner: I was awarded an external degree at the university, it took me three years instead of four. At the same time, I improved my English level — from Pre-Intermediate to Advanced.
Education and Courses
Name your school, major, and when you went there. And, if you got certificates, link them up. Start with your latest or highest degree, then list courses and workshops from most recent to oldest.
If you’re fresh outta school (less than three years ago), they might care about your grades. So go ahead and toss in your average grade from your diploma.
Keep it to one or two pages. Stick to the most important things, and save the details for the interview.
Font should be just right, not too small or too big. Go for size 11-12 and use standard fonts to make it easy on the eyes.
If you’re in a creative field, feel free to jazz up your resume with visuals to show off your graphic design skills. But remember, don’t make it hard to read, okay?
For regular jobs, use a regular ol’ text document with default formatting and margins.
Save your resume as PDF or DOCX (DOC).
Email addresses should be pro, not silly like Devil666@gmail.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. Just use your first and last name.
Don’t put personal info in headers or footers ’cause it might not show up when printed or on some devices.
And speaking of photos, it’s different everywhere. In some places, no pics are allowed to avoid discrimination like in the USA, where resumes with photos will not be considered. So check first!
If you do add a pic, make sure it’s good quality with a clean background. No shades or hats!
Oh, and for real, don’t use a grainy pic with a crazy background. Keep it clean and pro-looking.
Before you send out that resume, give it a quick check for any grammar or punctuation mishaps.
And if you’re adding links to your socials, better make sure there’s nothing sketchy on there. Even innocent jokes can get you the boot. Stick to a link to your pro LinkedIn account instead.
If you have little work experience
Talk about your school days or experience that might come in handy for the job. Even hobbies that show off some cool skills.
I’ve taken part in publishing a university newspaper over the last two years. I’ve created newsworthy stories by researching the necessary information.
We were on a tight budget, therefore we looked for volunteers from our group who gave us a hand with illustrations for the articles. That’s how I learned to negotiate.
Working on the university newspaper was time-consuming, but I am a multitasker so I could graduate from the university with a diploma with distinction. Our team was publicly awarded for our persistence and objectivity.
Resources for job searching and resume templates
We recommend the following websites for job searching:
Here is a resume template from Stanford University to make things look pro.
Make sure to tailor your resume to match the job requirements, keep it concise, and use the right format. And don’t forget to review it for any errors before you send it out. Good luck on your job hunt!