Your resume is your first impression. It’s what prospective employers read before they get to meet you or even speak to you on the phone. Making your resume stand out from the crowd is important. However, there are standard elements that should be on every resume.
Here are the main elements of a successful resume:
Objective – This is an optional section of a resume. The objective outlines (briefly) your goal or outcome for this position or career path.
- Example: Position of Blogger with The Workplace Word, where I can apply my education, experience, and skills to deliver quality content.
Skills – List any skills that were not mentioned elsewhere in your resume. Software knowledge, management skills, and foreign languages are some examples of what could be included. Don’t forget about listing any soft-skills you know you excel at.
- Example: AutoCAD, WordPress, Adobe Illustrator
Education – Include all degrees and study abroad experiences. List the degree received, the name of the school and the date you earned it. If you have a great GPA (3.0 or higher) include that too. Don’t forget to mention any relevant courses, especially if they wouldn’t be obvious based on your major or degree. Also, it’s assumed that since you have a college degree you went to high school. So, no need to include high school unless you went to a nationally known school.
- Example: B.S. in Computer Science • Penn State University • 2004 – 3.5 GPA, Specialized in App Development, Tech Club Member, Deans List 4 years.
Experience – This section is where you list all the experience you’ve had both paid and not paid. List the position, company name and the dates of the experience. Include a brief summary of what you did and what results you accomplished. You don’t need to include every experience, just the ones that show you’re readiness for the position you are applying for. Be brief, concise, results-oriented, use verbs, and numbers.
- Example: Blogger • The Workplace Word • March 2017 to Present – Increased blog audience by 67%. AND Developed an employee satisfaction program increasing retention by 56%.
Leadership – List your leadership experiences, honors, and awards. Show your future employer how you have been a leader.
- Example: Dale Carnegie Leadership Advantage, Volunteer Lead at Memorial Hospital
Some other quick tips:
- Every time you send out a resume tailor it to the industry/job you are applying for.
- If you are applying for multiple jobs at a company, you can omit the Objective section on your resume and include a less concise version of it in your cover letter.
- Avoid anything that would represent extreme political or religious views.
- Don’t include references with your resume. Give them only when they are requested.
Since there’s standard information that needs to be on a resume, one of the best ways to make it stand out is through how you format it. Take the time to make your resume composition and format fabulous. Make sure it reads well and is nice to look at.