building the perfect resume

Building the Perfect Resume

In August 4, 2020

The hunt for a new job can be exciting and sometimes overwhelming. If you’re on the hunt for your dream job, the manner in which you present yourself during the interview process is pivotal to your future career success. To get that dream job however, you need to get your foot in the door. While making sure you’re qualified for the job you’re trying to get is the first step, you also need to make sure your resume is up to the task in order to be noticed by recruiters and hiring agencies! Building the perfect resume is one of the first steps to getting noticed. 

For some, the need for a resume hasn’t yet been an issue. If you’re a youngster applying for low level positions, sometimes all you need is to fill out the provided application. It’s always a good idea however, to have an updated, professional looking resume to turn in with your application. We’ve put together a few resume tips for you to craft your perfect resume below.

Building the Perfect Resume – Tips for Success

When creating your resume, you want to keep a few important things in mind. Employers are going to look for some very important information when looking through their list of candidates for any given job. They will want to know: about your work history or achievements with your career in mind; why you did those things or took those previous positions, and how doing those things got you where you are today. Below are a few helpful tips to assist you when building your perfect resume.

  • Should you write your own resume or hire someone? – Of course writing your own resume is always a possibility, but there are services and individuals out there who write resumes professionally. If you’re not confident in your resume writing skills, you may want to hire someone to whip up a beautifully-crafted resume for you. LinkedIn has some great resources to find a resume writer to assist you.
  • Pick your format – There are a ton of different resume formats to choose from. Both Microsoft Word and Google docs have free templates to get you started. No matter what format you choose, make sure it’s clean, simple, and concise. 
    • Use professional fonts – Arial or Times New Roman are widely accepted. 
    • Font size is important – Use size 10 or 12
    • Reverse chronological order is most commonly used. That means you’ll start with your most recent job experience and work backwards down the page
    • Keep your resume to 1-2 pages long
    • Refer to prior jobs and accomplishments in past tense, while your current positions or causes should be in present tense
    • Start with work experience then move to non-work experience like organizations or charities you’ve worked with. After these items you should list your education and follow that up with relevant skills
  • Be sure to include your personal information – At the top of your resume, be sure to include your name, address, and contact information. It’d be a shame if you put all the work into your resume and forget to leave a way for potential employers to contact you.
  • Cater to your audience -Your original resume should have the standard information listed above. Depending on the job you’re trying to obtain, you should tweak and change your resume to cater to the industry or position you’re aiming for. Make sure you read the job description of the job you’re trying to get and ensure key words and important information lines up with the content in your resume. For example, if you’re trying to get an agricultural job outdoors, you may not need to add that you’re fluent in German as a skill. 
  • Consider a resume summary statement – These can be especially helpful if you’re trying to break into a new career, or you’re just getting started in the workforce. A summary statement can help explain why you may have been out of work, or why you’re suddenly interested in a new line of work. It can also help explain your goals and why you’re seeking employment with a specific employer. 
  • Don’t bog it down with every position you’ve ever had – When building the perfect resume, you want to be sure to keep your education and job history relevant. If you spent your younger years jumping from job to job, it’s best to keep small, insignificant positions off your resume. For older applicants, any jobs you had more than 10-15 years ago are more than likely not relevant. Listing more than 5 or 6 positions in your work history can be harmful to your interview process. Unless an older position is absolutely relevant to the position you’re trying to obtain, leave it off your resume.
  • Add your education achievements but keep it simple – Your graduation year, and how you graduated are important, as are any certifications or extra classes you may have taken that are relevant to the position you’re applying for should be on your resume. 
  • Add hobbies and interests – While these should not be the highlight of your resume, adding interests and hobbies can give the hiring manager a glimpse into who you are and what your interests are can lead to conversation during your interview. Showing you as a person and not just another applicant may give you added visibility. 
  • Review, review, review – The more eyes you can get on your resume after it’s written the better. They can add insight, catch errors and give advice on things you may have missed.

Once you’ve got your first resume drafted, it will no doubt become a life-long work in progress. Getting through the first draft can seem daunting but don’t fret! As you gain more experience and learn more skills, updating your resume will be a quick and easy process. Make sure you have nice, clean, fresh printed copies (no photocopies!) on hand along with any necessary hiring documents you may need when you’re hired. Make sure you have your social security card on hand, as well as an official certified copy of your birth certificate. For a list of I-9 documents employers need to onboard you, check out our blog here. Good luck with building your perfect resume. We hope you land the job of your dreams!

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