Writing your resume

Your resume is probably your most important selling document one that can determine whether you get offered a job interview. Here some resume pointers:

Introductory Information

Start your resume with your name, home and e-mail address, and telephone number. Using your office phone number can indicate either that (1) your employer knows you are leaving or (2) you don’t care whether he or she finds out. You’re usually better off using your home or cell phone number.

Job Objective

State your job objective next. This should summarize in one sentence the specific position you want where you want to do it (type and size of company) and a special reason an employer might have for wanting you to fill the job. For example, Production manager in a medium size manufacturing company in a situation in which strong production scheduling and control experience would be valuable. Always try to put down the most senior title you know you can expect to secure, keeping in mind the specific job for which you are applying.

Job Scope

Indicate the scope of your responsibility in each of your previous jobs, starting with your most recent position. For each of your previous jobs, write paragraph that shows job title, whom you reported to directly and indirectly , who reported to you, how many people reported to you, the operational and human resource budgets you controlled and what your job entailed (in one sentence).

Your Accomplishments:

Next (and this is very important), indicate your worth in each of the positions you held. This is the heart of your resume. It shows for each of your previous jobs: (1) the concrete action you took and why you took it and (2) the specific result of your action – the payoff. For example as production supervisor I introduced a new process to replace costly hand soldering of component parts. The new process reduced assembly time per unit from 30 to 10 minutes and reduced labor costs by over 60%. Use several of these statements for each job.


Keep your resume to two pages or less, and list education, military service (if any) and personal background (hobbies, interests associations) on the last page.

Personal data

Do not put personal data regarding age, marital status, or dependents on top of page one. If you must include it, do so at the end of the resume, where it will be read after the employer has already formed an opinion of you.

Finally, two last points. First, so not produce a slipshod resume: Avoid overcrowded pages, difficult to read copies, typographical errors and other problems of this sort. Second, do not use a make do resume – one from 10 years ago. Produce a new resume for each job you are applying for, gearing your job objective and worth statements to the job you want.

Make your Resume scan able:

For many job applications it’s important to write a scan able resumes in other words, one that is electronically readable by a computer system. Many medium and larger sized firms that do extensive recruiting and hiring – especially online and with the aid of applicant tracking systems – now use software to quickly and automatically review large numbers of resumes, screening out those that don’t seem to match (often based on the absence of certain key words that the employer is looking for).

There are several guidelines to keep in mind for writing scannable resumes. These can be summarized as follows:

Use type no smaller than 10 points and no larger than 14 points.

Do not use italicized type, and do not underline words.

Use type styles that work well for resumes and can be scanned as well as read, such as Helvetica, Futura, Optima, Times Roman, New Century Schoolbook, Courier Univers and Bookman.

When submitting hard copies, submit only high resolution documents, documents produced on a laser printer work best. Many photocopies and faxes are not clean enough for scanning.

Make sure to present your qualifications using powerful key words appropriate to the job or jobs for which you are applying. For example, trainers might use key words and phrases such as: Computer based training, interact video, and group facilitator.

Online Bios

Today, employers often encourage or require their professionals and managers to post brief biographies on corporate intranets or Web sites. These bios let other employees know about their colleagues’ expertise. Tips for writing such bois include:

Fill it with details: The more information you enter the more likely a person seeking someone with your background will find you.

Avoid touchy subjects: For example avoid discussing religion and politics.

Look the part: Your profile may require posting photos. If so, dress in professional attire.

Make it search friendly: make sure your profile contains the key words you think someone searching for someone with your background and expertise would be looking for such as manager supervisor or engineer.

Use abbreviations: Abbreviations are important. For example, someone searching the site might more readily punch in MBA then masters in Business Administration.

Say it with numbers: Describe specifically how your work has contributes to your current employer’s and past employer’s bottom line.

Proof read: Carefully proof read your online profile, as you would your resume.

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