The most important part of your resume is the content that it contains. Your resume should include content that correctly describes you. It is important to do a good job presenting your information and take the time to list your accomplishments, skills and abilities that best match the job you want. Remember, a recruiter or employer may only spend 10-30 seconds scanning through resumes to decide which resumes to look at more closely and which to set aside.
Here are seven parts to consider when writing your resume:
- Personal information
- Professional/Work Experience
- Responsibilities, Skills, Accomplishments and Results
- Military Experience
- Volunteer Experience
- Optional Additional Headings
Your resume should start with your personal information:
- Include your full name at the top of your resume.
- Your contact information comes next. Include your full home address.
- Always include a telephone number (including area code) that the employer can use to contact you.
- Be sure to include a personal email address and check your email regularly when you are applying for jobs.
There are two places on your resume to put your education, depending on your situation. If you have been out of school for less than five years, your education information goes at the top of your resume, after your personal information. If you have been out of school for more than five years, your education information should be listed at the end of your resume.
To list your education, start with the highest level of education that you have completed. Include the name of the degree you received, the name of school, the location of the school, and, if you received a major, include that as well. You can include any specific coursework that is important for the type of job for which you are applying. For most jobs, you do not need to include your grade point average (GPA), unless you are proud of it.
List the detail of your work history or experience for only the last 10 to 15 years, or your last four or five positions. After that, decide if it is necessary to include the job on your resume. If you feel a job should be included, do not include a lot of detail for jobs you held more than 10-15 years ago. Also, if you worked for one company for a long time, you don’t need to show every position change with that company. Just list the most recent position and two or three others the provided experience that relates to the job for which you are applying. For each position, include: your job title, the name of the company, the location of the company, and dates you worked there. Under that, list your responsibilities and accomplishments in that job.
Responsibilities, Skills, Accomplishments and Results
Now, list the your responsibilities at that job or what you did. You will also include your skills and accomplishments, the things you learned and what you accomplished. To help you as you think about your responsibilities and what you achieved in this job, review the following list of skills:
- People skills
- Oral presentations
- Organizational skills
- Analytical skills
- Computer skills
- Planning skills
- Negotiating skills
- Foreign languages
- Managing/ Training others
Remember to use short sentences or phrases that begin with an action verb to describe your work experience. Make sure you focus on the results you achieved in your prior jobs. For example, don’t just say “worked on the product development team”. Instead, say something like, “worked as part of a team that successfully developed a web application for special education under budget and ahead of schedule.”
At a minimum, list your service and the dates of service in the military. If your military experience happened a long time ago, or isn’t related to the type of job you want, you don’t need include more than this. If your military experience is directly related to the type of position you are looking for, or if you were promoted quickly during your military career, then highlight these items on your resume.
One way to get the interest of an employer is to show that you are someone who works to make the community a better place. Most companies look positively on people who volunteer in the community. Sometimes what you did as a volunteer may show more than your paid work history as far as having the skills needed for the job you are applying for.
Take the time to think about what you learned as a volunteer. Did you have the chance to practice public speaking or write reports, news releases, or newsletters? Did you plan projects, coordinate volunteers, or train others to help? These skills are useful in many jobs.
Optional Additional Headings
Everyone is unique and has different experiences. If you have experience that will be useful in the job in which you are interested, add this to your resume. Think about what you can add that might sell yourself to a potential employer, but do not worry if you don’t have some of these items to put on your resume.
Some of the optional headings you may want to add to your resume are:
- Awards or honors
- Professional affiliations
- Leadership roles
- Teamwork Experience
- Certifications or licenses
- Extra-curricular activities
We hope you enjoyed learning about the content to include on your resume. If you would like to learn more about teaching workplace readiness skills, click the free trial link below.