How to Write a Resume

Being employed is extremely important in today's society and harder than ever due to increasing competition. One document that is vital to increasing the chances that one becomes employed is the resume.

A resume is a brief document that lists one's objective, qualifications, education, past employment and any other relevant information that may spark interest from an employer.

It should be noted that in order for a resume to be successful, it should achieve one major goal, which is piquing the interest of an employer and subsequently landing you an opportunity to interview for the job.

General Resume Suggestions to Keep in Mind

In order to write a successful resume, there are a few things to keep in mind including:

Resume Formats

There are two major types of resume formats that are used in business; they are the Functional Resume and the Chronological Resume. While both are used extensively in the marketplace, the most popular type of resume is the Chronological Resume. It should be noted that you do not necessarily need to use the most popular type of format for the best results. Many savvy job seekers choose between these two formats to pick the one that fits their needs the best.

The Chronological Resume Format

This resume format is the most popular format used in the marketplace today. The chronological resume has many strengths and the main purpose of this type of resume is to highlight your skills and job titles in a chronological manner. It should be noted that when creating your chronological resume, list your most recent job first.

Tips on When to Use a Chronological Resume

There are several instances where a chronological resume can be beneficial. Here are some tips on when to use the chronological format.

The Functional Resume Format

The functional resume format is not as popular as the chronological resume, but can be just as effective to land a job interview. Most job seekers use the functional resume format for seeking specific opportunities. One of the strengths of a functional resume is that it focuses on experience and skills (which are usually placed under the skill heading). A functional resume helps a job seeker focus on the attributes that make him or her most marketable to an employer.

In addition, functional resumes are a great way to make an impact if you don't want to show or have a long work history or if you have lots of gaps in your work history. While most job seekers do list their past job history, the emphasis is always on the skills, experience and achievements.

Tips on When to Use a Functional Resume

There are several instances where a functional resume can be beneficial:

The Major Parts of a Resume

Both resume formats consist of specific parts, they include the heading, job objective, skills section, education section and job experience section.

The Heading Section

The heading is the part of the resume where you list your contact information. Practically all headings are set at the top of the page in an easy to read location. Your heading should include the following information:

The Job Objective

The job objective is one of the most important pieces of information you can write in your resume. The job objective's main goal is to specifically state in a clear and concise manner what position you are seeking. While it might seem obvious, many job seekers bury this information in their resume making it hard for employers to quickly realize the position you are looking for. Recruiters can receive hundreds of resumes per day, so a clear and easy to find job objective will ensure that your resume is categorized appropriately.

When writing a job objective, here are a few tips:

The Skills Section

The skills section is where you list any and all skills that you have that might be pertinent to the job position you are seeking. The skill section is an excellent place to show your achievements and competencies. For those writing a functional resume, this is the area to focus on and shine. A properly written skills section will express to your potential employer your experiences, past accomplishments and most importantly what you are capable of accomplishing in the future. Here are a few tips on writing a proficient skills section.

The Education Section

The education section's main purpose is to show the potential employer that you have the proper credentials for the position you are seeking, as well as significant intelligence. Here are some tips on writing a proper education section.

The Job Experience Section

In the job experience section, you will want to list your work history. As stated above, for those creating a chronological resume, it is important to list your current or most recent job first and then work backwards. It should be noted that you do not necessarily have to list every company that you have worked for. Remember, you need to keep your resume to only one page. However, most resume writers include two to three jobs in this section. The following are some tips on writing a proficient job experience section.

Some Final Suggestions to Consider

Writing a resume can be extremely challenging, especially if it has been a while since you were in the workplace. Keep in mind that writing a resume does take time and a lot of effort. A resume will not be complete just after one or two drafts and it must be crafted over a period of time to become extremely effective. Here are some final things to consider when writing your resume.

Additional Reading on How to Write a Resume

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