There are many different styles and differing opinions on what constitutes a great resume. If “you” are the product that you’re trying to persuade the consumer to purchase, consider your resume the “label of ingredients.” You want to make that label appealing, factual, easy-to-read, and compelling. My intent here is not to give you a step-by-step description of how to write a resume. Instead, provide some tips that I have developed after having read tens of thousands of resumes in my career.
EASY TO READ
From your own experience, you know to read left to right, from top to bottom. Because of this tendency, place the category, such as education, experience, or skills, in the left-hand column, along with the dates. Mark these names in bold—the college you attended, the companies you worked for. Place the city or town where each college or company was located in the far right-hand column, to make a blocker format. Use bullets to list your responsibilities and achievements. Finally, resumes for recent college graduate should be on one page.
Use action verbs wherever possible. Take the time to accurately describe each and every job you held. Give a complete list of skills and knowledge that you have—computer programs and software that you have used, foreign languages you are proficient in, etc.
Prove yourself by noting any honors or special achievements that you have earned. If you graduated cum laude, were “employee of the month,” or saved your company some costs, make note of it. Think of what might appeal to your audience. For instance, if you are applying for a position in advertising, they are most likely looking for creativity. Consider placing a QR code on your resume and linking it to either your LinkedIn profile or a website that you’ve developed.
Finally, make sure that everything is perfect. Even after you spell check, read it again for accuracy, and correct spelling and grammar. Have someone else proofread it as well, as they may see something that you’ve missed. Employers tell me that the resumes they receive are often full of errors. Stand out by making yours error free!