A resume (or CV or BioData whatever you say) is a tool which is prepared with the intention to earn an interview session and ultimately to earn a job. A resume is infact an advertisement of self through which job seekers try to get the attention of employers against potential vacancies. Employers will always try to invite the best candidates for the interview before deciding someone eligible for a certain post. If you feel you are eligible for such a post but fail to depict your potentiality to the employer – it will bring no luck to you – not even a call for the interview. A nicely designed Resume therefore, is an essential document for everyone who plans to lead the life doing jobs.
It is not that the resume is required only at the beginning of someone’s career. No employee can be said hundred percent settled with any particular employer. Someone may be fired, someone may get better opportunity elsewhere, someone may wish to change career path – but whatever it is – the necessity of Resume will always be there. The style and pattern of resume thus differ from situation to situation. No one can apply hard and fast rules on how to write a perfect resume or what should be there to make a resume a masterpiece. It will depend upon the nature of the job, type of the organization and the psychology of the employers. A great resume should be able to present you in the best light.
Before you start preparing or fine tuning your resume – you should know your career path. It is the domain in which you – your qualifications fit in. You should know where your are applying and your resume should focus on employers need – not yours. You should only apply to relevant positions. Otherwise it will be a time waster for the employers and even more time wasting for you. There will be hundreds and even thousands of applications from the candidates. The person who’ll be screening the resumes will hardly spend more than 15 seconds unless something special catches his/her eyes. Therefore it is important to make your resume a well-structured one which can express – what it needs to be selected – at a glance. The relevant specialties should be highlighted intelligently and your resume’s first few portions (or few lines) are vital. These lines can make it a successful resume which may lead you to the interview.
Your resume should be focused on the employers need and how you qualify for this. You should know the answer for this question “What would make someone a perfect candidate for the position”. Then, you should start preparing your resume which will ultimately try to answer this question. Your resume should contain two sections. The first section will make assertion about your abilities, qualities and achievements. Here you’ll need to mention what you are capable of doing, what skills you have and the achievements you earned. The second section should provide the evidence of the assertions you made in the first section. This is where you list and describe the jobs you have held, your education, etc.
Some of the points are essential parts of resume writing. An objective at the beginning should be there. Here you’ll describe how you visualize yourself contributing to the organization. The objective should be to the point and will depend upon the job title and the nature of the organization. Another essential part- The “Summary” or “Summary of Qualifications” consists of several concise statements that focus the reader’s attention on the most important qualities, achievements and abilities you have to offer. Those qualities should be the most compelling demonstrations of why they should hire you instead of the other candidates. This may be the only section fully read by the employer, so it should be very strong and convincing. You can add a further extension of the accomplishment description in the summary that are directly related to the list of skills you presented earlier in the assertion section.
A great resume should also strongly present the evidence section against the assertion section. This helps the resume screener to persuade that the description are true for the candidates. The evidence section should contain the following:
- Professional Affiliations
- Leadership quality
- Publications / research works
- Personal Interests
As mentioned in beginning – the resume should be a well structured one to be able to catch the attention of the primary screener. The resume should be presented nicely and for this the following should be taken care of:
- Visually enticing: clean and clear, enough space among the different sections, symmetrical and uncrowded.
- There is uniformity and consistency in the use of italics, capital letters, bullets, boldface, and underlining
- Absolutely error free : Spelling, grammatical and sentence making
- All the required information are included
- Appropriate past job description
- Strengths are highlighted and weaknesses are de-emphasized
- Try to show you are result oriented
- Try to avoid controversial points
- Use bold caps for your name on page one
- Put section headings, titles etc with boldface
- Avoid long sentences, break them into smaller.
- Make it look better: use graphic details
- Try to make it short: avoid unnecessary portions
- Provide your contact details carefully
Remember – you should be able to back you up with what you have written in the resume. Do not provide inappropriate information as it may create problems even long after you get selected. A single resume will not fit in different positions for different employers and different job types. You should maintain multiple version of your resumes focusing various fields. If required – fine tune your resume for individual employer/organizations. I have tried to touch as many factors as possible – some might not came into my mind. Please use search engines and find some examples of resumes. Don’t just make it – pay a careful attention to it. It really is worthy spending some time for preparing a nice and precise resume. Good luck.