This post may contain affiliate links. Should you make a purchase by clicking on any of the links, I may earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Read my full affiliate disclosure here
Knowing how to write a resume can make the difference between getting the call to interview for your dream job or missing the opportunity.
Did you know that recruiters only spend an average of 6 seconds scanning a resume before deciding if they are going to read it in more detail or throwing it into the NO pile?
Your resume is your most important tool when looking for a job, it is your business card and you want to make sure that it showcases your experience and personality in a professional way.
So, how do you write a resume?
You need to have an easy to read and clean structure, that allows you to write down all important information, without making your resume look clogged.
How to write a resume – structure
1. Personal information
Your personal information should include:
- Contact details: mobile number and email
- Location (optional, if you are applying abroad or in another city)
- LinkedIn URL
Depending on where you live, a picture is not mandatory. It can, however increase your chances of getting hired, if you portray yourself in a friendly and professional way.
Don’t forget to smile!
3. Work Experience
The work experience should start with the current or most recent position held and you should structure it as follows:
- Title/Company/Dates (dd/mm/yyyy – dd/mm/yyyy or dd/mm/yyyy – present for current position)
- Short description, one or two sentences, of what the company does. This is not mandatory, however, it can bring value in certain cases.
- Achievements: state your most important achievements with bullet points. Make sure they are concise and relate to the job you are currently applying to.
Degree attained/Institution name/Graduation date
Here you can list anything that is relevant, that you haven’t mentioned already above, such as additional foreign languages spoken, volunteering experience (if relevant), additional degrees or certificates (if relevant).
Please refrain from listing strengths or skills such as stress-resilient, good team player, time management skills, good leader, etc. as these are just your opinion about yourself and they will make you look bad and unprofessional. You will be able to prove all of these if you will get the job.
Below is a resume template that you can purchase in order to create a modern-looking resume that will surely land you a job interview. It includes 1, 2 and 3 pages templates, along with a cover letter template.
Besides it is fully customizable in terms of colors, fonts, and sizes and has detailed instructions on how to write your resume. It is ATS compliant and written by a professional resume writer.
With your purchase, you will also get a 50+ page “Guide to Landing the Job” bonus.
Click on the image below to check it out.
How to write a resume – details
When writing your resume, make sure that you use the same tense across all of it, preferably present tense, as it is easy to navigate.
Choose one font all across your resume. Stick to professional and easy to read fonts, such as Calibri (Body), Arial, Cambria, etc.
You should use the same size across all your resume, except titles such as
- Personal Experience
- Work Experience
which you can also bold in order to make it easier to navigate. Their size should be bigger than the rest of the text.
Keep your text in black as it is professional and easy to read. If you want to use other colors use light and neutral colors.
Don’t use bright colors or get creative when trying to get a job, unless you work in a creative field, in which case, probably all the above does not apply to you.
5. Your name
Your name should be in a bigger font and in bold. You want to make sure that as soon as the recruiter opens your resume, your name stands out.
6. Spell check
Make sure you triple check for any spelling or grammar mistakes, as these can cost you a job.
While a lot of “experts” advice that you keep your resume at a maximum of one page, if you had two jobs, that already becomes impossible.
From personal experience, if you are a senior person and most of your experience is relevant, 2 to 3 pages are actually advised, as when applying for a senior role, recruiters need to have a better understanding of your previous experience and skills.
Even if you are not a senior person, up to 2 pages, as long as the information is relevant, is absolutely fine.
When saving your resume, you want to save it in a Word File as well as a PDF. The PDF file will be the one that you will be sending with your application, while the Word File you keep for any future changes you might need to do.
Keep it simple when choosing a title for your resume. Recruiters recommend to stick to your name and add the word CV or Resume like below:
John Smith CV / John Smith Resume.
If you want to stay updated with the latest trends in the recruiting industry and maximize your chances of finding a job, subscribe to my newsletter below.
- How to write a resume objective
- How to write a cover letter
- How to organize your job search to increase productivity
- Top traits employers look for in a candidate
- How to find a job when you don’t know where to start
- How to use LinkedIn to get a job
- People you need to follow on LinkedIn if you are job searching
- Job interview tips to ace your next job interview
- List of weaknesses for job interviews
- 14 phone interview questions and how to answer them
- Best-paying jobs that you can do from home
- Top 10 recession-proof jobs
- The best websites for remote jobs