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General Resource : Resources for Job Search >> 3. CV and Resume Writing

  • Essential Elements of a Resume
  • Submitted by pilot008 on 2009-12-18
  • Resumes should contain this following basic information that can be adapted accordingly:

    Name (includes your full name and surname)
    Address (your permanent address plus any other temporary residence stating the dates you will be in each)
    Contact Phone Number (your mobile phone number plus your number in each address) .

    Contact information should make it easy for a prospective employer to contact you directly or leave a message to which you can respond the same day. Only provide information you are ready and willing for potential employers to use.

    Provide an e-mail address that you can access from both home and work, if possible. Keep in mind that employer-provided e-mail accounts may be monitored. You may prefer to use a personal e-mail account for contact purposes. Make sure the e-mail address you provide sounds professional.

    If you provide information on a web page, update your page on a regular basis. Make sure employers cannot access personal parts of your web site. Only provide information you are willing to share with employers.

    A well-developed career objective helps you determine your next career move. Your objective sets a tone for the rest of your resume. Try to keep it short.

    A good objective mentions a specific job category, such as "office position" rather than "data entry clerk." Being too specific may eliminate you from possible openings within a company. You may also mention an industry, such as "the communication industry" tailored to that of your potential employer. You may want to highlight some of your specific skills that are of interest to the hiring party. Focus on what you have to offer a potential employer, not on what they can do for you.

    Example Career Objective: To obtain an entry-level office position where my word-processing computer skills and attention to detail may be fully utilized.

    Your objective is your employment goal. You should develop an objective even if you choose not to include it in your resume. Write the rest of your resume with this focused objective in mind. Remove any statement that does not reflect your objective.

    Employers may look at your resume before your cover letter. A well-written career objective catches an employer's interest and channels this attention to the details of your resume.

    Depending on the type of job you seek, this section may be even more important than your work history. Accuracy with starting and ending dates, degree titles, and school contact information is crucial.

    List your educational levels attained, starting with your most recent. If you have taken college classes but are not pursuing a degree, list any classes pertinent to the position you are seeking. Include your high school or General Equivalency Diploma (GED) information if applicable.

    A potential employer may thoroughly research your educational background based on the information you provide. You may be asked to provide your college GPA (Grade Point Average) and GPA for your major field of study. Make sure you have this information with you during an interview, whether you provide it within your resume or not. A general practice is to list your GPA if 3.0 or higher.

    Your work history reveals prior dates of employment and positions held with previous employers. It gives prospective employers a quick view of your employment patterns and career progression.

    When providing your work history, be accurate with starting and ending dates, job titles, and employer contact information. If you have gaps in your employment history, be prepared to explain them during an interview. A large gap in your work history can also be addressed in your cover letter. You should include volunteer activities and unpaid internships, although paid work experience should take precedence.

    An effective way to highlight your accomplishments is by using results statements. Result statements explain what situation you faced at work, what action you took, and the resulting outcome.Think about your successes or the problems you have solved. Be specific. The statement "works well under pressure" is general and does not tell the prospective employer much. Instead, give an example where you performed well under pressure.If your result is that you "completed the project under budget," be sure to state how much under budget.

    The goal of these statements is to show an employer you have a proven track record of providing results. You can use results statements to both paid and unpaid employment.

    Do not provide contact information for those current or previous employers you do not want contacted by your potential employer. If applicable, contact the personnel department of your current employer to inform them they may be contacted for purposes of verifying your employment. You should assume a potential employer will thoroughly research your work history based on the information you provide.

    List the skills you possess that are relevant to the position you are seeking. They should be ranked by importance to the potential position. If you are new to the workforce, or making a career transition, your list of relevant skills may be brief. If you lack related skills, you can emphasize the "soft" skills you possess (such as organization and communication).

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