When writing your resume, it is important to remember this is your first impression and one that will be measured and compared against your competitors. Initially, an employer will only spend up to a minute assessing if you are right or not, so it is important to showcase yourself appropriately and effectively at first glance. Your aim is to create interest and provide a reason for an employer to want to go back and read more.
A resume is a compilation of your work history, experience, skills, achievements and personal interests. With so much to add, you must remember to keep it as succinct as possible and relevant to the position you are applying for. A Typical resume will contain:
Personal Details; which should include your name, daytime phone number and an email address.
Career Summary; starting with the most recent position and contain only place of employment, position title, dates worked and major achievements or awards. You should also include any volunteer work you have or currently do.
Education and Qualifications; starting with the most recent and contain qualification or course name, name of institution and dates attended. You should also include workplace courses completed, technical training and any extra curricular courses you have attended.
Career History; starting with the most recent, your focus should include:
- Date Hired
- Position (if numerous positions, list separately in chronological order)
- Skills required to complete the required tasks
- Achievements and awards
- Experience you gained out of your position
Try to keep this section clear and easy to read. If your work history spans for quite some time, try limiting it to the last 15 years and only involve work experience that relates directly to the position you are applying if it is beyond the 15 years.
Volunteer Work; Often skills acquired in any type of volunteer work can be of benefit in the work environment. You can further showcase extra skills and experience you have gained on your own merit outside the paid workforce.
Personal Interests; it can be very positive to add any outside interests or groups and activities you have an association with. It can further demonstrate your skills and experience such as leadership, team work and problem solving. It can also show a side of you that is otherwise difficult to portray in a resume such as your general attitude, humility, generosity, achieving and general focus and direction.
Referees; The best references come from the person you either currently or have previously reported to or manager relevant to the work you performed. When listing referees, it is best you contact them first to ensure you have their current contact information and so they can expect a call from your potential future employer. If it is difficult for you to list details due to circumstances such as still being employed by them, you can simply list that current references are available upon request. Be sure however to be ready to hand over current details when required.