Job hunting can be a challenge, whether you are a newbie, between jobs or have been out of the working world for some time, the entire process can seem daunting. The first step is to perfect your resume. Having a solid resume is the first stage in landing the job you want. Consider your resume as an advertisement for your product, which is your experience, skills, and talents. It’s all about representing yourself in a way that will quickly catch the eyes of recruiters and will present you as an ideal candidate. Let us go through the steps on how to make a resume.
Step 1: Choose A Format
There are many options to consider when designing your resume. There is a myriad of free resume templates on the Microsoft Office Suite as well as online. Select a design that is clean, easy to read, and appealing to the eyes. Once you have selected a template, all you have to do is fill in the blanks.
Step 2: Constructing Your Resume
Name & Contact Information
The first bit of detail on any standard resume will be your name and contact information. Typically, at the top of the page, the name is the largest font and is the most prominent feature. Next will be your contact information including the standard home address, email address, telephone number. Also, to be considered are your LinkedIn address, social media links, and professional website where applicable. If your email and social links are not professional in any way, do not include them.
If your email address is “email@example.com” or anything else that sounds unprofessional or inappropriate in any way, use a different email account. Be sure to check your voice mail greeting to ensure that it is also professional. Depending on the format you chose, you can fill in the information accordingly. There is no wrong format, it is about what suits you best.
Your Winning Introduction
Once you have completed the contact information section, you can now move on to writing your winning introduction. Your introduction is a summary of what you have to offer as a candidate. The intention of this summary is to grab the recruiter’s attention by showcasing your relevant skills and work experience.
If writing is not your strong point, you do not have to craft this from scratch. Simply search for a free resume template online, preferably a candidate that is in your similar industry, to get an idea of the structure and wording and amend it to suit you.
Showcasing Your Talents
After crafting your winning introduction, your next move is to list your relevant skills, competencies, and qualifications. Your skills should include between 5 – 10 bullets of your most relevant capabilities. Ensure that they are both technical or hard skills like expertise in using certain software, and soft skills like sales, or customer service.
If you are applying for specific jobs, try as best as possible, to use the language quoted in the job description. So, if the job calls for “sharp analytical skills” and you have those, make sure to include that. For your educational qualifications, list them in order of the most advanced degree first.
Your Work Experience
Most of your time and effort will be spent on this section of your resume, as it is the most important part. It is vital that you write this section well. This should be a summary of your most relevant job experience and not your entire work history. Bullet points are recommended and be concise when describing each point. Always list in reverse chronological order, which is most to least recent. Think of all your experiences gained in each job and ensure that the ones that match the vacancy, are included.
Step 3: Check And Re-Check And Check Again
After you have completed writing your resume, check for grammar, information, and formatting errors as many times as possible. If you can, get someone else to read it. Simple grammar and formatting errors can completely turn recruiters off and prevent you from being selected for consideration, so ensure that you take the time to perfect your resume. Additionally, try to keep your resume two pages or less.
With some newer free resume templates, you can fit your resume on one page, if you format it well, using the space on the page creatively. However, in your effort to minimize the pages, do not use tiny font sizes, as this makes it hard to read. You may also need to include a cover letter when submitting your resume, though some employers do not require one.
Remember to consider yourself as the product being sold and your resume as the label or advertisement. It should, therefore, be informative, interesting, and also eye-catching. Once you have followed all the tips provided and you are armed with all the information needed, resume writing will be a breeze.