Creating a Resume | Let

Creating a Resume

Monday, 12 March 2012

Updated: 9/10/2015

Today on Let's Get Working we are going to take a look at resume writing. To assist you I have placed links to resumes templates at the bottom of the article. You can modify these templates to make your own resume.

What is a resume?
A resume is a document you give to an employer that lists all your qualifications and your personal, educational and professional, skills and experience. You will change and update your resume many times during your life, and for each job you apply for.

How long should a resume be?
A resume should ideally be 1 to 2 pages in length and never more than 3. If you decide to have a third page, you should never put important information on it.

On average an employer spends as little as 10-20 seconds reading your resume and only remembers 60% of the information from the front page, 40% from the second page, and many employers don't even read a third page. This is why it is very important to structure your resume properly and reduce any unneeded information.

To save space on your resume you should list only the information that is relevant to the job you are applying for. You should not list all your employment and education history, instead only list things from the past 5-10 years.

How should I layout my resume?
While you want your resume to stand out, decoration should never distract the reader.

  • Colours aren't required in a resume as if they aren't used properly they can look unprofessional and distract the reader from important information. It is better safe than sorry.
  • Simple borders are best, if you decided to use one.
  • Put a space between each section of the resume.
  • When listing skills or responsibilities bullet points are easier to read then paragraphs
  • Font should be easy to read, don't use anything fancy.
  • Make sure your text isn't too small; 12pt is the best size for normal text and 14 - 16pt for headings.
    Keep in mind, when it comes to headings bolding can often achieve the same result as increasing the size.

What should a resume include?
The order of information in a resume will be different for everyone based on the information they want to stand out. When deciding what order to use, place the most important information at the front of your resume and work backwards.

The following is a good guide to follow.

  • Name and Contact Details
  • Career Objective
  • Skills
  • Employment History
  • Education History
  • Achievements
  • Memberships and Interests (Optional)
  • Referees

Name
The first thing on your resume at the top of the page should be your name. To make this information stand out, it is a good idea to centre it in the middle of the line.

Contact Details
Below your name you should list your address, email address and contact phone numbers. This information should also be centred in the middle of the line. The following sections should be aligned to the left of the page.

Career Objective
Your career objective is a summary of your current employment goals and how you could use your skills to benefit your next employer. A career objective will typically be 1 to 2 sentences in length.
When writing your career objective avoid talking about what you hope to gain and instead talk about what the employer will gain by hiring you.

Example

To obtain a position as a Customer Service Associate where I can utilize my friendly demeanour and skills in situation analysis and client needs evaluation to get the maximum level of satisfaction from customers.

Skills
Write your skills and abilities that match the role you are applying for. To find examples of what skills a particular job requires, you can search the 2015 Job Guide for examples.

Employment History
List any previous employment history, starting from your most recent. The jobs you list here should be relevant to the job that you are applying for.

Each entry will contain 4 things.

  • The Job Title
  • The month and the year that you started and finished
  • The Company name
  • A bullet point List of 2 -3 of the job's responsibilities

Education
List any qualifications or courses that you have completed, starting from your most recent. Anything you list in this section should be relevant to the job that you are applying for.

Each entry will contain 4 things.

  • The Qualification name
  • The Year you completed it
  • The name of educational institution
  • The Suburb of the educational institution

Achievements
Here you can list any special achievements you have accomplished that demonstrate skill, or show how valuable you can be to the employer.

Professional Memberships
Here you can list any groups or organisations you are a member of. Remember to kept it relevant. Listing that you're a member of the local football club will have no relevance to most jobs.

Interests
Listing 2-3 interests can help to show the employer that you are interesting and not a one dimensional character. This section is optional as not all employers will care about it.
Beware if you do use this section. Make sure the interests listed are relevant in some way to the job. Employers will judge you based on what you write here. Do not list things such watching TV or playing Xbox. These sorts of things look bad and make the employer think that you sit around all day doing nothing.

Referees
Referees are people the employer can call to find out information about you. You can use almost anyone as referee; but the best people to use are people that know what you are like to work with. This can be a co-worker or a previous supervisor, another member of a group you volunteer with or your high school teacher or principal.
You shouldn't use a family member. This is because they will have trouble being objective, they will only say good things about you and they probably don't really know what your like to work with any.

You should list 2 referees and for each referee, include the following information

  • Their name
  • Their job title
  • The company they work for
  • Their contact number

Before you list anyone on your resume, you must ask the person's permission to use them as a referee.

Resume Templates
These templates are examples of what a resume looks like. You can download a copy to create a resume that works for you.

A standard resume from the Australia Job Access website.
Job Access - Standard Resume

A standard resume with separators between each section to make them stand out.
Resume with section separators

A collection of different styles resume templates.
Collection of Resume Templates

Until Next Time,
Steven



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