How to Write a Resume
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GENERAL RESUME WRITING TIPS
- A Resume is a sales document. It must be customized to appeal to a specific audience. Avoid thinking of creating a one-size-fits-all-jobs resume.
- Create a master resume to capture all your work experience and skills. For each job, review the job advertisement carefully and underline the keywords. Use the keywords to guide you in creating a new customized resume for that specific job you are applying for.
- In you work experience section avoid listing your tasks. A competitive and appealing resume is one which highlights your quantifiable, value-adding achievements on behalf of your employers.
- Use the processing questions to help you brainstorm your achievements for each employer you have worked for.
WORK EXPERIENCE PROCESSING QUESTIONS TO HELP YOU BRAINSTORM YOUR ACHIEVEMENTS
- Try to give $ value, numbers and/or percentages in your achievement statement as this helps to most objectively illustrate the value you added to the unit, dept., company
- Try to express any difficulty or handicap you had to overcome to execute on the job. This shows that you can handle complexity and still perform well
- Try to express why what you did was important. State what changed for the better as a result of your handling of the task/portfolio
- Other Processing Questions
- What is the size of the budget I managed?
- What is the value of the projects I managed?
- What problem did I solve?
- How did I impact the customer experience?
- What was significant about the customers I serve? e.g. Net worth?
- What is the size of the customer base?
- How did I improve a process?
- How did I reduce costs?
- How did I increase income?
- How did I contribute to a greater variety or improved goods/services?
- How did I contribute to innovation?
- How did I contribute to staff development/staff performance?
- How many people did I supervise?
- What was outstanding about my staff? Team Awards? Team Member Award?
- What did I initiate?
- What awards and/or special commendations did I receive?
- What challenging or unusual circumstances (internal / environmental) did I have main responsibility for handling / resolving?
RESUME SECTIONS (In order of presentation)
Insert your name, address, phone number and email. If you have a fully optimized LinkedIn Profile, include the URL. Limit you resume to 2 pages. At the top of the 2nd page insert a mini header with your name, phone number, email address and ‘Page 2 of 2’.
Insert the name of the job title only.
This section should be written after the resume is completed to summarize and highlight your most outstanding accomplishments, relevant to the specific job you are applying for. This section is appropriate for professionals who have at least 5 solid years of experience in their field. A career profile is not appropriate for entry-level professionals recently graduating from high school or college.
Key skills and expertise include:
Based on the job advertisement or your industry knowledge list the main skills and expertise that you have acquired which are relevant to the specific job you are applying for. List in a 2 or 3 column format.
Experience & Accomplishments
Start with your current/last employer. Insert name of employer, address, job title and beginning – end dates of employment. Avoid listing your duties for each employer. Instead, think about what you achieved for your employer at each job. Insert the achievements most relevant for the job you are applying for.
Education & Professional Development
Insert your academic qualification and the professional certification most relevant to the job you are applying for. Begin with the last qualification earned.
Insert awards you have won over the history of your employment, including date and source of the award. If you are a recent graduate, list the awards you won in school or university. Begin with the last award earned.
Insert the positions you held and the names of the clubs, societies and associations that you have been a member of. Begin with your most recent membership.
Insert the voluntary assignments that you have participated in and the organizations that coordinated the assignment. Begin with your last voluntary assignment.
This is an optional section unless requested in the job advertisement. If you insert it, do not write out the names and contact details of your references. Only insert the phrase “Available upon request.”
Would You Feel More Confident in Your Job Search with the Help of a Professional Resume Writer & Career Coach? Contact Us Today!
Cheryll Messam, CPC
Professional Resume Writer | Career Coach
You in Mind Jamaica