Resume Writing Examples
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Resumé Writing What is a Resumé? The French word resumé means "a summing up." It is a concise, written summary of your work experience, education, accomplishments, and personal background—the essentials an employer needs to evaluate your qualifications. A resumé is a personal, written communication that clearly demonstrates to prospective employers your ability to produce valuable results in their area of concern or need. It should motivate them to be interested in your qualifications and desire to meet you. The Purpose of Resumé A resumé can be used for specific purposes: 1. It can help you see yourself as you wish to be perceived by a prospective employer. 2. It can create interest in you as a potential employee and can be an essential first step in obtaining an interview for the job you want. 3. It can help employers remember you after you have been interviewed. A resumé is a professional advertisement about yourself that translates what you have done in the past into what you intend to do in the future. It should speak clearly and convincingly about your qualifications and set you apart from your competitors. Everything in it must answer the question "why should the employer hire you?" If it does not, then you have only given your potential employer a good reason to drop you from consideration. A resumé is like a coming attraction for a movie; after reviewing it, a prospective employer decides whether he wants to see more. It is nothing more than a simple marketing tool—a printed, personal advertisement of yourself. Many people mistakenly believe that the resumé is the most important part of the job search. They believe the resumé's function is to "sell" the job seeker to the prospective employer. In fact, the best and most effective selling tool the job seeker has is him or herself. A resumé is basically a screening device that employers use to determine whom they will or will not interview. Your resumé is both a vehicle of communication and a demonstration of how you communicate. Both what you say and how you say it are important. It is up to you as a responsible communicator to make sure the reader gets the right message. The resumé and its cover letter should be examples of your best writing. Employers use resumés to identify candidates they would like to interview; they do not have time or patience for autobiographies, philosophical tracts, or mystery stories. Because just thirty (30) seconds are typically allotted to skimming a resumé, certain significant facts should be presented briefly and in a format that is readable and visually pleasing. Think about how an advertisement works: 1. Tells potential buyers (employers) enough about a product (you) to intrigue them and want to see the product in person (interview). 2. Includes truthful information, but it does not stress potentially negative information. 3. Takes audience into account. Self-Evaluation is the 1st Step! 1 You should complete the following three-step process before beginning to write your resumé: 1. Know your skills, strengths, qualifications, and accomplishments and how they relate to the kind of job you seek. 2. Learn as much as possible about the qualifications sought by the industry in which you want to work. 3. Rank your skills, strengths, qualifications, and accomplishments according to their ability to support your interest in and qualifications for the job(s) you are seeking. These steps will generate the raw material needed to begin organizing and writing your resumé. To prepare a successful resumé, you should have a clear understanding of yourself. This means identifying your values, interests, abilities, and skills. Preparing a resumé is, in part, a process of self- analysis. Resumé Formats While resumés are uniquely tailored to specific individuals, there are two standard approaches to resumé organization: 1. Chronological 2. Functional Chronological Format: Presents work experience and education in reverse time sequence and lists achievements and responsibilities under each category. Is most widely used and accepted; professional interviewers are most familiar with it Emphasizes recent job(s) as most important Demonstrates progression of experience and growth Must avoid simply writing a fact sheet without highlighting significant features May raise questions if you have changed employment frequently Functional Format: Organizes experiences under major skill headings, while degrees, job titles, employers, and dates are listed separately. Minimizes focus on dates Draws attention to what you have done Stresses selected areas of accomplishment and experience which might be most marketable in job target Can be useful for those changing careers or re-entering the job market after a time period without formal employment Does not emphasize professional growth pattern Is difficult to stress corporate or organization affiliations Many employers are slightly suspicious of it Is harder for an interviewer to follow Content Sections Identification Name, address, email, and phone number(s) (present and permanent) 2 Objective A clear statement of your career, internship, or job objective gives employers an opportunity to verify the compatibility of your aspirations with the organization's needs. A vague, catch-all objective usually reflects a feeling of uncertainty about what you want and may weaken an otherwise strong resume. May choose to include in cover letter instead of resumé. Personal Profile or Summary of Qualifications (optional) Personal characteristics or skills that make you an especially strong candidate Statements must be supported by evidence in the education, experience, and extra-curricular sections of your resumé Education (after high school) Degrees, institutions and location, graduation date(s) Major (and minor) GPA if above 3.2/4.0 (overall and/or major) Academic honors, scholarships (if applicable) Highlight significant coursework Other schooling, special projects Related Experience Position title, employer, city & state, dates Stress action verbs and transferable skills to convey accomplishments Include any experiences (paid or unpaid) relevant to your position objective Other Activities, Skills, and Honors Mention extracurricular activities; These can show how you took advantage of the available components of college life and that you are a well-rounded candidate Cite those which support your job objectives or which demonstrate your ability to take positions of leadership and responsibility Include awards, honors, professional licenses, publications, membership in professional organizations Note computer languages/applications and foreign language fluency Power of Verbs Carefully chosen verbs can greatly strengthen the presentation of your skills and accomplishments. A list of action verbs can be found at the end of this handout. Send it to People Who Count No matter how good the content of your resumé, it serves little purpose if it does not get into the hands of the right people. Sending your resumé cold to hundreds of companies usually does not produce sufficient return to warrant the effort. You are better off doing the necessary research to get names and addresses in specific organizations of individuals and customizing your cover letters appropriately. You may want to call the company ahead of time to determine to whom you should write. Preparing Ideal Scannable Resumés 3 Many companies are using document-imaging technology that scans your resumé into a computer system. The computer can search for just about anything in your resumé. This can make it easier for you to be considered for more jobs, and it keeps your resumé on file so it is quicker to update your information. Tips For Maximizing Scannability of Your Resumé Use white or light-colored 8.5 x 11 paper, printed on one side only Provide a laser printed original. Do not staple or fold. Use standard, easy to read typefaces such as: Times New Roman, Helvetica, Times, Palatino, New Century Schoolbook, Arial, etc. Use a font size of 10-12 points. Do not condense spacing between letters. Use boldface and/or all capital letters for section headings as long as the letters do not touch each other. Avoid vertical and horizontal lines, graphics, and boxes. Avoid a two-column format or resumes that look like newspapers or newsletters List each phone number on its own line. Use a one-line format for your addresses. Tips for Maximizing Hits Use enough key words to define your skills, experience, education, professional affiliations, etc. Describe your experience with concrete words rather than vague descriptions. For example, it is better to use "Managed a team of software engineers" rather than "responsible for managing, training". Be concise and truthful. Use more than one page if necessary. The computer can easily handle multiple-page resumés, and it uses all of the information it extracts from your resumé to determine if your skills match available positions. It allows you to provide more information than you would for a human reader. Use jargon and acronyms specific to your industry (spell out acronyms for human readers). Increase your list of key words by including specifics, for example, list the complete names of software you use such as Microsoft Word and Lotus 1-2-3. Use common heading such as: Objective, Summary of Qualifications, Employment, Work History, Positions Held, Appointments, Skills, Summary, Accomplishments, Strengths, Education, Affiliations, Professional Affiliations, Publications, Papers, Licenses, Certifications, Examinations, Honors, Personal, Additional, Miscellaneous, References, etc. If you have extra space, describe your ―soft‖ skills. Key words could include: time management, dependable, high energy, leadership, and integrity. E-mailing your Resumé Many employers prefer electronic versions of your resumé and cover letter. Also, e-mail is often the most efficient way to send resumés when you are conducting a long-distance job search. If an employer does not specify their preference for receiving application materials, but provides an e-mail address with their other contact information, you may assume that e-mail is an acceptable way to send your resumé. Tips for e-mailing your resumé Attach your resumé to your message as an MS Word document; because this is the most universal program, nearly every employer will be able to open and read your resumé 4 Use only universal fonts, like Times New Roman or Arial, to ensure that the employer will view the document exactly as you sent it. Pasting your resumé into the body of your e-mail message will cause your formatting (including bullets, columns, indentation, lines, and font style) to be lost. What Do Employers Want? 1. Ability to communicate 9. Flexibility 2. Intelligence 10. Interpersonal skills 3. Self-confidence 11. Self-knowledge 4. Willing to accept responsibility 12. Ability to handle conflict 5. Initiative 13. Goal achievement 6. Leadership 14. Competitiveness 7. Energy level 15. Vocational skills 8. Imagination 16. Direction Employers’ Most Frequent Complaints Regarding Resumés They Receive 1. Too much "factual" information (dates, titles, courses) and not enough presentation of accomplishments or results 2. Takes too long to say too little 3. Poorly organized and laid out 4. Too much irrelevant information (age, weight, sex, health, etc.) 5. Poorly typed and printed 6. Misspellings and bad grammar 5 Resumé Checklist Resumé is one page Name is prominent and contact information is complete and up-to-date (including email) Objective is concise and addresses the needs of the potential employer (what you can contribute, rather than what you want from the employer) Education section lists all colleges that have granted or will grant degrees or certifications, with degree, major and graduation date Education section includes GPA, study abroad, and related coursework – if applicable Experiences are listed in reverse chronological order Verbs in active tense start each description Accomplishments are written to highlight skills, abilities, and competencies rather than duties. Descriptions give details about methods, actions, and results. Resumé is error free Resumé is printed with a laser printer on cotton or linen resumé paper in white, ivory, or light gray Format and overall appearance of resumé is attractive and well-organized Resumé is easy to read and the most important points stand out Do not include any of the following: X Reasons for leaving past jobs X Past salaries or present salary requirements X Photograph Names and addresses of references (however, these may go on a separate sheet and sent with your resumé) 7 (Sample Functional Resume) ROBIN SMITH Current Address: Wheaton College CPO 1234, Wheaton, Illinois 60187 (630) 752-5123 (until 5/10/2003) Permanent Address: 712 Randall Avenue, Chandler, Arizona 85287 (306) 771-1245 E-Mail: Robin.L.Smith@hotmail.com Summary of Qualifications Four years published writing experience Fluent in three languages: English, Spanish and French Excellent written and verbal communicator Goal oriented and able to handle multiple tasks Experience Highlights Writing · Edited articles, featured columns, and editorials for weekly campus-wide newspaper. · Investigated, compiled data and composed articles for featured articles. · Contributed original poetry and short stories for Kodon, a yearly student literary magazine. Customer Service · Provided detailed tours of college campus to prospective students and parents on a bi-weekly basis. · Hosted approximately fifteen prospective students throughout the school year during overnight campus visits. · Advised customers with clothing selections, assisted with transactions, and maintained organized appearance of higher end women’s retail clothing store. Leadership · Counseled and mentored a group of twenty women in their relational and spiritual development throughout their Freshman year. · Acted as liaison between hall director, student development office, and students with regard to disciplinary actions, planned floor activities and living environment. · Supervised a team of 10 students that coordinated activities and events relating to Freshman Orientation week. · Recognized as top sales associate (awarded for top sales performance and excellent service) two consecutive months. Work History Editor-in-Chief Wheaton Record, Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL. Fall 2001 – Spring 2003 Resident Assistant Wheaton College Student Development, Wheaton, IL. Fall 2000 – Spring 2001 Sales Associate Ann Taylor, Oak Brook, IL. October 1999 – May 2000 Education Bachelor of Arts, English Minor in French and Spanish May 2003 Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois Cumulative Grade Point Average: 3.65/4.00 Extra-Curricular Activities Kodon contributor, Diakanoi, Gospel Choir, Orientation Committee Chair 8 (Sample Chronological Resume) DARREN SMITH Current (until 5/04): CPO 1234, Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois 60187 (630) 671-4285 Permanent: 712 Randall Avenue, Chandler, Arizona 85287 (306) 771-1245 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org OBJECTIVE To obtain a position in finance, utilizing my education and experience in the field. PERSONAL PROFILE (This section is optional – useful if not enough experience) · An adept team member and team leader · Demonstrated excellence in public speaking and interpersonal skills · Possess a worldview influenced by extensive international experiences EDUCATION B.A. Business/Economics, May 2004 Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois · Cumulative Grade Point Average: 3.4/4.0 · Related Coursework: Essentials of Finance, Principles of Management, Money and Banking, Intermediate Accounting · Wheaton in the Holy Lands, Summer 2003 RELATED EXPERIENCE Intern, General Insurance Agency, Wheaton, Illinois, Fall 2003 · Communicated with business units and colleagues in preparing policy analysis documents. · Reviewed, processed, and determined eligibility of potential policy holders. · Reconciled financial data for the Chief Information Officer. · Analyzed and upgraded the computerized system of premium collections. Resident Assistant, Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois, August 2002-May 2003 · Successfully developed community atmosphere in a wing of 45 residents. · Acted as liaison between hall director and students. · Teamed with staff of 10 Resident Assistants in the enforcement of policies, and conflict resolution in 400 occupant residence hall. · Provided concise record keeping and detailed confidential reports. · Assisted in selection and training of new residence hall staff. Volunteer Office Assistant, Christian Financial Concepts, Phoenix, Arizona, Summers 2001, 2002 · Provided comprehensive administrative and clerical support services, including handling incoming calls and mail, greeting visitors, and maintaining office inventory. · Attended client financial sessions. · Assisted with design and implementation of new client database system. ADDITIONAL ABILITIES · Proficient in MS Word, Access, Excel, C++, PeopleSoft · Conversational in French · Cross-cultural experience due to living in Japan and traveling throughout Asia and Europe EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES · Varsity basketball, team-elected captain, Wheaton College, 2000-2004 · Small Group Leader, Wheaton College, 2003-2004 academic year 9 · Orientation Committee, 2002 NAME:______________________ Current (until______): CPO______ Wheaton College, Wheaton IL 60187, (630)______________ Permanent: (address)____________, (phone)___________ Email: (no blue hyperlink) OBJECTIVE To obtain a position in____________________________________________________. EDUCATION B.A.________________________________________, May 200__ Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL · GPA: _____/4.0 (3.0 or above) · Related Coursework:__________________________________ RELATED EXPERIENCE Position Title Organization Name, Wheaton, IL, Summer 200__ · Started each phrase with an action verb. · Utilized only sentence fragments for descriptions. · Implemented the use of creativity instead of rely on a template. · Generated sentences with proper and consistent punctuation at the ends. · Identified the skills in each position that related to the Objective Statement. · Represented experience within one page. · Applied a font no smaller than 10pt. Position Title Organization Name, Wheaton, IL, Summer 200__ · _____ · _____ Position Title Organization Name, Wheaton, IL, Summer 200__ · _____ · _____ OTHER EXPERIENCE Position Title Organization Name, Wheaton, IL, Summer 200__ · _____ · _____ ADDITIONAL ABILITIES · Proficient/Fluent/Conversational in (language)_________________________________ · Computer Skills:_________________________________________________________ · Cross-cultural experience gained from living/traveling abroad to___________________ EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES · Women’s Chorale, Wheaton College, 200__-200__ · Discipleship Small Group Leader, Wheaton College, 200__-200__ · Cross Country/ Track, Wheaton College, 200__-200__ List of Action Verbs 1 0 Accelerated Converted Fixed Mentored Rectified Talked Accomplished Cooperated Followed Merchandised Re-designed Taught Achieved Coordinated Forecasted Met Reduced Team-built Acted Copied Formulated Modeled Referred Tended Adapted Corresponded Founded Moderated Regulated Tested Addressed Counseled Gardened Modified Rehabilitated Told Adjusted Created Gathered Monitored Related Took Administered Created profits Gave Motivated Remembered Trained Advised Criticized Generated Moved Rendered Transcribed Analyzed Cut Governed Multiplied profit Renewed Translated Answered Dealt with Guided Multiplied sales Reorganized Transmitted Anticipated Decided Handled Navigated Repaired Traveled Applied Decorated Headed Negotiated Reported Treated Approached Defined Helped Observed Represented Trimmed Approved Delegated Hired Obtained Reproduced Tripled Arbitrated Delivered Hypothesized Offered Researched Tutored Arranged Demonstrated Identified Operated Resolved Typed Ascertained Designed Illustrated Ordered Responded Umpired Assembled Detailed Imagined Organized Restored Uncovered Assessed Detected Implemented Originated Restored profits Understood Assigned Determined Improved Outlined Retrieved Understudied Assisted Developed Improvised Oversaw Reviewed Undertook Attained Devised Increased Painted Revised Unified Audited Diagnosed Indexed Participated Risked United Authored Directed Indoctrinated Perceived Routed Unraveled Began Discovered Influenced Performed Sang Updated Bought Dispensed Informed Persuaded Saved Upgraded Budgeted Displayed Initiated Photographed Scanned Used Built Disproved Innovated Piloted Scheduled Utilized Calculated Dissected Inspected Planned Screened Verified Cared for Distributed Inspired Played Searched Weighed Catalogued Diverted Installed Predicted Selected Widened Categorized Doubled Instituted Prepared Sensed Won Chaired Dramatized Instructed Prescribed Separated Write Charted Drew up Integrated Presented Served Wrote Checked Economized Interacted Presided Set Clarified Edited Interpreted Printed Set-up Classified Educated Interviewed Processed Sewed Coached Eliminated Invented Produced Shaped Coded Empathized Inventoried Programmed Shared Collaborated Encouraged Investigated Progressed Simplified Collected Enforced Judged Projected Sketched Communicated Enlarged Kept Promoted Sold Compared Enlisted Landscaped Proof-read Solved Compiled Established Launched Proposed Sorted Completed Estimated Learned Protected Speak languages Composed Evaluated Lectured Provided Spoke Compounded Examined Led Publicized Staffed Computed Exchanged Lighted Published Standardized Conceived Executed Listened Purchased Stimulated Conceptualized Exhibited Located Questioned Studied Conciliated Expanded Logged Raised Succeeded Conducted Expedited Made decisions Read Summarized Conserved Experimented Maintained Realized Supervised Consolidated Explained Managed Reasoned Supplied Constructed Extracted Manipulated Received Supported Consulted Facilitated Marketed Recommended Surveyed Contacted Familiarized Measured Reconciled Symbolized Contracted Filed Mediated Recorded Synthesized Controlled Financed Memorized Recruited Systematized 1 1