Golden rules of resume writing

Posted: 07/08/12 | Category: Resume

Writing Advice

These resume-writing guidelines apply to every individual, regardless of the industry, professional level or job of interest

You should ...
Customize your Resume

Tailor resume for each position.
Focus on employer's needs, identifying how individual skills & accomplishments meet/exceed their requirement.

Use the following outline for your resume:

  • Contact heading
    Name, address, phone, e-mail address
  • Career objective
    Clear, brief, specific
  • Summary statement
    A bulleted list of your key skills & qualifications
    Example: Information Technology ProfessionalCCNA and CCNP with excellent networking skills Experience includes: Solid background with Windows 2003 and Active Directory. Familiar with Cisco Routers, VPN's and network security at the enterprise level
  • Work history
    Include specific results for which you were personally responsible, with supporting dataUse action verbs and quantify your experience as much as possible.Cite sales goals achieved, production volumes increased, lines of code debugged, number of employees managed, revenues increased, etc.
  • Education
    College degrees (School and dates of graduation relevant courses or workshops, list of internal or corporate training courses completed and certifications
  • Optional information
    Relevant memberships, awards, publications, certificates, etc.
  • Personal statement
    An overview of the personal characteristics that make you an excellent candidate for the job

Practice brevity - keep it short
Make resumes from one to three pages in length.
You may have a long version and short version for digital transmission in email or web. Write qualifications and accomplishments in concise bullet points that can be read quickly. Select words with care and avoid run-on sentences. Read every sentence out loud. If you find yourself gasping for breath, break the sentence in two.

Showcase your achievements
Mention at least two or three of your top achievements within the top third of page one - this is the most valuable real estate on your resume.

Use action words
To add life to your resume, use bulleted sentences that begin with action words like prepared, developed, monitored, presented, etc.

Match your resume with the position
Review want ads for positions that interest you. Use the key words listed in these ads to match them to bullets in your resume.

Make it readable
Select an easy-to-read font and type size - no less than 11 points. Leave some white space, rather than a full page of text, with no breaks. Use a standard font if sending resume via email. And, to preserve formatting, send the resume as an attachment, rather than cutting and pasting into the email text box.

Edit & proof your resume
Read resumes carefully - check spelling, grammar and punctuation. Send to friends, a mentor or a career counselor to review.

Think quality
Use good quality paper stock and Select white or cream - colored paper.