The resume of a person is one or two pages written up that provides a professional and personal description of the person. Such profile-based representation is useful for applying for any job. In general, a resume contains a person’s academic qualification, work experience, achievements, personal details, etc. An attractive resume helps in securing good jobs. These are considered to be the source of a good first impression. The methods of making a good, eye-catching resume are discussed below. Also, the different formats of writing a resume are discussed here.
Definition and Meaning of Resume
A resume is also called curriculum vitae, or CV. A general resume is a brief representation of yourself, depicting your work experience, educational qualifications, technical skills, soft skills, achievements, personal information like marital status, date of birth, hobbies, etc. Whenever you apply for a job in an organisation, your resume is sent to the HR of that particular organisation for evaluation. Therefore, a resume can also be defined as an attempt by the prospective applicant to exhibit his or her suitability for the job role, to the recruiters.
There are three different formats of resume- functional, chronological, or a combination of both. The job applicants must choose the right format of a resume to strengthen their application.
In general, a resume is accompanied by a cover letter, where the participants describe why they think that they are the most suitable ones for the job. An attractive resume with an engaging cover letter increases the chances of a successful job application by manifold.
General Resume Format
In general, a resume contains the following details.
Work Experience- with the most recent work experience mentioned at the beginning
Additional information on various skills
Reference contact details
Resume Writing Format
All the points mentioned above should be covered in any resume. The following points will help you to arrange your resume in the right format.
Contact Information: Any resume must be open with the personal information and contact details of the candidate. It must have the candidate’s name, address, and contact number. Such contact information is the most important consideration in any resume and must come first in the list of information.
Objective: The candidate must mention his or her objective for submitting the resume for the job role. It can be a job application for an open position. In that case, it is important to mention the details of the job position (including the job number). It can also support the submission of an application for a potential job position in the future. In that case, the objective must mention the prospective job position for which the application has been submitted.
Academic Qualification: The third part of the resume must focus on the educational qualifications of the applicant. The applicant must start with the highest degree obtained and also the high-school or graduation percentage. They should limit their educational details to the major degrees only.
Experience: This section of the resume is one of the most important sections. Candidates who have work experience in the field for which they are applying have the upper hand over those who do not have the desired work experience. The candidate must mention details of his or her experience clearly and concisely. The experiences are generally listed in the resume in chronological order starting with the latest job role.
Skills: The candidate must mention all the skills that he or she has, that can be applied to the job. It can be some external degree or diploma courses on a particular subject that the candidate has undertaken. The candidate must mention all the knowledge and strength he or she has in a particular field. Such mentions of skills in the resume will increase his competence for the job application.
Projects and Activities Undertaken: Skills are valued more if the candidate has applied them to any project. If the candidate has undertaken any real-life project, he or she must mention it in the resume. Such project experiences add more brownie points to his or her candidature. Moreover, if the candidate is involved in any activity or any club, he or she must mention that in the resume as well.
Honours and Achievements: The last section of the resume must portray all the honours and awards that the candidate has secured to date. Preference must be given to all the awards related to the job. The candidate can also mention if he or she has received any notable awards not related to the particular job role.
After going through all these points, you no longer have to wonder about how to write a resume format.
Formats of Resume
The three most common formats resumes are written are - Chronological format, functional format and combination format. Let us now look at all these formats individually in detail:
Essential Elements of a Resume
There are a few key points to be considered while designing a resume. These key points can be used to format existing resumes as well and they would give the candidate an edge over the candidates by inculcating these elements listed below:
The heading of a resume has to be covered at the topmost section of the resume and it should have clear and precise details like your name and contact details. Ensure to use a font that is clear and big enough to draw attention to this information. Also, mention the job title below your name so it gives HR (Human Resources) a fair idea of the role you are applying for. A particular organisation could have multiple job opportunities. It is important to specify the job position you are applying for. The contact details would have information like your contact number, email address and correspondence address.
The summary on your resume needs to be present, it is a short paragraph highlighting your skills and expertise. Draw the HR’s attention to your achievements. The summary needs to be of about five lines and try not to write a summary longer than that. Specify your career objective in this paragraph, you can also use “Career Objective” as the title to this summary. Pick your career objective wisely to ensure it is in connection to the job description that you must have received from the employer.
Professional experience is a mandatory section as it ensures the employer you have the valid experience for this job opportunity. Mention the name of your former employee along with the employment start and end date. Do not forget to put in a few lines your job role and responsibilities. If you are a fresher you can omit this section.
Education qualification has to be mentioned on the resume even though you have a lot of professional experience. In the case of freshers, this becomes a crucial part as you are hired based only on your qualification. Make sure you highlight your percentage or GPA (Grade Point Average) in this section.
Skills are the next important element on your resume post the professional experience and educational qualification. This section highlights your strengths be it hard skills like technical proficiency or soft skills like communication or leadership skills. A skilful employee is always desired by employers. Ensure to list the skills based on the job description displaying why you are the right candidate for this position.
Achievements, be it your educational or professional achievements or awards or any skills that you may have developed through different courses and were awarded a certificate.