How to Make a Resume:
- Choose the Right Resume Format & Layout
- Add Your Contact Information & Personal Details
- Start with a Resume Summary or Objective
- List Your Work Experience & Key Achievements
- Reference Your Education Correctly
- (Optional) Include Additional Resume Sections – Languages, Hobbies, etc.
- Mention Relevant Skills That Fit the Job Ad
- Compliment Your Resume with a Convincing Cover Letter
- Proofread Your Resume and Cover Letter
Are you looking for how to write a resume that will get you that dream job you are looking for? In this step-by-step guide, I will show you the best resume examples, and how you can write a resume in a few easy steps.
For most job-seekers, a good resume is what stands between their dream job and Choice D. Landing an interview is a race against the clock — dozens of job seekers have already written their resumes and applied for your dream job. Get your resume right, and you’ll be getting replies from every company you apply to.
If your resume game is weak, though, you’ll end up sitting around for weeks, maybe even months, before you even get a single response.
Well, you’ve come to the right place!
In this guide, I’m going to teach you everything you need to know on how to make a resume.
So you’re probably wondering how you can write a resume that leads to HR managers inviting you to interviews daily.
How to beat them and land that position?
How to Make a Resume 2022: Step by Step Guide
Let’s get started with our step-by-step guide on how to make a good resume.
How to Make a Resume – Step by step
- Choose the Right Resume Format & Layout
- Add Your Contact Information & Personal Details
- Start with a Resume Summary or Objective
- List Your Work Experience & Key Achievements
- Reference Your Education Correctly
- (Optional) Include Additional Resume Sections – Languages, Hobbies, etc.
- Mention Relevant Skills That Fit the Job Ad
- Compliment Your Resume with a Convincing Cover Letter
- Proofread Your Resume and Cover Letter
So, let’s dive right in!
How to Make a Good Resume 2022
Before you even start working on your resume, you need to decide how you’re going to build it.
And no – you shouldn’t use a basic text editor. While this IS the most popular method for creating a resume, it’s very far from the best.
With a basic text editor resume, you’ll need to spend hours playing with the formatting. You make a minor change and BAM! Your entire resume layout gets messed up.
Choose the Right Resume Format & Layout
How to Pick the Right Resume Format? You can’t just start writing a resume by putting your info together in some easy resume template all willy-nilly.
There are three types of resume formats: reverse chronological, functional or skills-based, and a combination of the two. The choice depends on the type of job you are applying for and your level of experience.
The 3 resume formats are:
1) Reverse chronological resume format – This is the most popular resume format and is ideal for people with plenty of work experience that is relevant to the position they’re interested in.
Pros: Traditional resume style, familiar to potential employers.
Cons: Very common, not the most creative resume design format.
2) Functional/skills-based resume format – If you lack relevant work experience because you are a student/recent graduate, or you are looking to make a career change, the skills-based format is a better choice.
Pros: Entry-level job hunters can emphasize skills over lack of experience.
Cons: HR managers may think you’re hiding something.
3) Combination resume format – The combination resume is a great choice for job-seekers with a very diverse skill-set. It’s useful if you’re applying for a role that requires expertise in 3-4 different fields, and you want to show all that in your resume. Say, for example, you’re applying for a senior management role, and the requirements are expertise in Management, Sales, and Software Development.
Pros: Great for experienced pros and career changers for highlighting transferable skills.
Cons: Uncommon type, not as familiar, not recommended for entry-level jobseekers.
So, which one do you go for?
In 90%+ cases, you’d want to stick to the reverse-chronological resume format. This is the most common one, and most HR managers are used to this. Hence, in this guide, we’re going to focus on this specific format.
Most job applicants will likely want to choose the reverse-chronological resume template:
The chronological resume is a traditional resume format that emphasizes your duties, experience, and work history. As the standard format, it tends to be the easiest to read and scan. You’ll list your most recent positions first, and go back through past jobs in reverse-chronological order from there.
If you’re a recent graduate, or possess a diverse set of skills & work experience, you might want to pick one of the other 2 formats.
What is the Best Resume Layout?
The first thing a job recruiter notices about any resume is the layout.
Does it look organized or cluttered? Is it too short or too long? Is it boring and easy to ignore, or does it scream out “Read me!”?
Here are some of the best practices when it comes to your resume layout:Resume Layout Must-Haves
1. One page in length. You should only go for 2 pages if you really, really believe that it’ll add significant value. HR managers in big firms get around 1,000+ resumes per month. They’re not going to spend their valuable time reading your life story!
2. Clear section headings. Pick a heading (H2, for example) and use it for all the section headers.
3. Ample white-space, especially around the margins.
4. Easy-to-read font. We’d recommend sticking to what stands out, but not too much. Do: Ubuntu, Roboto, Overpass, etc. Don’t (ever): Comic Sans
5. Pick the right font size. As a rule of thumb, go for 11 – 12 pt for normal text, and 14 – 16 pt for section titles.
6. As a rule of thumb, save your resume as PDF. Word is a popular alternative, but it has a good chance of messing up your resume formatting.
One more thing you need to consider in terms of resume layout is whether you’re going for a traditional-looking resume template or something a bit more modern:
If you’re pursuing a career in a more traditional industry – legal, banking, finance, etc. – you might want to stick to the first.
If you’re applying to a tech company, though, where imagination and innovation are valued, you can go for something more creative.
What to Mention on Your Resume
Now that we’ve got the basics out of the way, let’s dive into the essentials of how to write a resume.
The most popular sections for a resume are:
- Contact Information
- Professional Resume Summary or Objective
- Work Experience (and Achievements)
- Optional Sections – Languages, Publications, Hobbies, etc.
Pro Tip: There are several studies that theorize relationships between resume cues and the applicant’s personality and hireability, further impacting hiring judgments through resumes. Be careful which info you choose to include!
Below, we’ll explore each resume section from top to bottom. We’ll explain what to write and how to write it so that you stand out and get the job you deserve.
Add Your Contact Information & Personal Details
A career diplomat knows what information should be disclosed, and which is better held back. Likewise, there are basic items that you must include in the contact information section, but you should also know what not to put on a resume.
The most critical section in your resume is the “contact information.” Even if you get everything else right, you’re not going to go far if the HR manager can’t get in touch with you because you misspelled your email.
Make sure to double-check, and even triple-check your contact information section and make sure everything is correct and up-to-date. Contact Information to be Included in a Resume.
Contact information to include in a resume:
- Name: First name, last name (middle name optional).
- Phone Number: Personal cell phone is preferred over the home phone number.
- Email Address: Today’s preferred means of communication.
- Location – are you located in the area, or will the company have to sponsor relocation?
- Title – Your professional title. It can be your position, word-for-word, or your desired job. Think “Digital Marketing Specialist” or “Junior Data Scientist.”
- LinkedIn URL – If you have an up-to-date profile that can add value to your application, make sure to include the link.
- Social Media – Do you have a published portfolio online? For developers, this would be your GitHub, for a designer Behance or Dribble and for a writer, it could be your personal blog.
- Website / Blog – Do you have an online presence? Maybe a blog that positions you as an expert in your field? If you do, make sure to mention it!
What NOT to Include in your Resume Contact Info Section
- Date of Birth (unless specifically required in the job ad) – The HR manager doesn’t need to know how old you are. It’s not important for their decision-making, and at worst, it might lead to discrimination based on age.
- Unprofessional Email Address – Do: firstname.lastname@example.org Don’t: email@example.com
- Headshot – The HR manager doesn’t need to know what you look like in order to evaluate your application, so there’s no real need to include it.
All clear? Good! Now, let’s examine what a successful example of the contact section looks like:
Pro Tip: Give them a professional email address, not your old high school handle (gossipgirl247@…) or an outdated email provider (…@hotmail.com). Studies have proven that a formal email address is much more hirable than an informal one.
Start with a Resume Summary or Objective
It’s not a secret for anyone that first impressions matter, whether they’re in your personal life, or your career.
You know how most Tinder users have little patience? And it takes a witty statement, or a provocative image to get a person not to swipe left on you?
Well, the employer flips through resumes just as fast. In less than 6 seconds, as HR statistics report shows, hiring managers scan your resume and make an initial decision. That means your resume summary statement/resume objective statement is likely to have the most eye time since it’s at the top of the page.
If you leave a bad first impression, chances are, it’s there to stay. After all, it’s very hard to change someone’s opinion of you.
The same applies to your job search – the HR manager spends around 6 seconds scanning each resume. Yep, your carefully-worded, hand-crafted resume only gets 6 seconds of attention. Unless, of course, you manage to leave an amazing first impression.
The way you accomplish this is through either a good resume summary or objective. Both are placed at the top of your resume, right around the contact information section:
You’ve got to compose a statement that paints an attractive image of your candidacy. After all, what is the purpose of a resume but to give the best impression of your clout as a candidate? Only question is—which one should you choose? So, here’s what you need to know about the two:
What’s a Resume Summary & When to Use it
A resume summary is a 2-3 sentence summary of your career. You should use a resume summary in basically any situation, unless you’re a recent university graduate or switching careers (in that case, you use a resume objective. More on that later!).
In your resume summary, you need to mention:
- Your job and years of experience. E.g.: Customer support representative with 5+ years of experience in the IT industry.
- 1 or 2 top achievements (or core responsibilities). E.g.: Specialized in technical support, customer care, and user retention.
- Desired goal (generally, passion for working at a specific company). E.g.: Looking for new opportunities as a support lead for a SaaS company.
Got enough relevant experience? Choose the resume summary statement that will condense your position-related skills and qualifications.
Let’s take a look at how to write a professional summary (or not), with right and wrong examples for clarity:
|Personable and dependable graphic designer with 4+ years of expertise in a fast-paced global marketing firm. Achieved company-best quality satisfaction rating according to internal review (99.76%). Seeking to advance my career by growing professionally with the DeZine team.
|I have been a graphic designer for the last 4 years. In addition to my knowledge of various software and design programs, I also handle some tough customer accounts, and I am always able to work well under pressure, even the tightest of deadlines.
Difference? Wrong focuses on everyday duties, not accomplishments. Right gives evidence of IT consultant resume skills, achievements, and experience.
Pro Tip: The “right” resume summary above also mentioned the company by name. This is a great way to make sure that your resume feels personalized, rather than just sent to every company out there.
What’s a Resume Objective & When to Use it
A resume objective is, in a nutshell, the goal of your resume. It communicates your motivation for getting into a new field. As with a resume summary, a resume objective should be around 2-3 sentences.
Choose the resume objective statement if you have no work experience at all or at least none related to the position you’re applying for (entry-level applicants, career changers, students, etc.). You’ll make the case that though you don’t have experience with this position, you do have experience relevant to it, and transferable skills from other areas.
Let’s look at another set of good/bad examples on writing an objective for a resume:
|Diligent customer support specialist with 3+ years of experience at a large computer hardware company. Obtained the highest grades in build spec knowledge (100%) and quality (97.3%). Seeking to further career by growing with the BQNY team as an entry-level IT technician.
|I am a customer support specialist eager to become a field technician. I don’t have experience in field work, but past coworkers have said that I am a quick learner. I am highly motivated because I enjoy being outside for work rather than behind a desk at a cubicle.
In the Right one, we used some transferable skills from the previous company and some proud resume achievements… with numbers. Remember: numbers speak louder than words! The Wrong one doesn’t show enough to hold the hiring manager’s attention.
Pro Tip: If you noticed, both “wrong” examples above used the first-person. Avoid this on your resume.
As we’ve mentioned before, a resume objective is the go-to for anyone that either has no work experience or is going through a career change. Formula to Create Your Resume Objective:
(1) [SKILL/EDUCATION/CERTIFICATION RELEVANT TO THE JOB WITH JOB TITLE].
Looking to apply my (2) [years/months of EXPERIENCE RELEVANT TO THE JOB DESCRIPTION] at [COMPANY YOU ARE APPLYING TO]
to help (3) [TYPE OF RESPONSIBILITIES YOU WILL HELP OUT WITH SUCCESSFULLY]. Examples of Resume Objectives
1) So, here’s how that would look like if you’re a student:
- “Hard-working recent graduate with a B.A. in Graphic Design from New York State University seeking new opportunities. 3+ years of practical experience working with Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop, creating illustrations & designing UX / UI. Looking to grow as a designer, as well as perfect my art, at the XYZ Design Studio.”
2) Or, on the other hand, if you’re going through a career change:
- “IT project manager with 5+ years of experience in software development. Managed a team of developers to create products for several industries, such as FinTech and HR tech. Looking to leverage my experience in managing outsourced products as a Product Owner at XYZ.”
List Your Work Experience & Key Achievements
If you think of your resume as a fancy meal, the resume experience section is the main course. It includes the most important things to put on a resume, like your work history and past achievements.
Let’s go through the various job history components of the perfect resume experience section now.
The most important part of your resume is your work experience. This is where you really sell yourself, displaying your past accomplishments and responsibilities.
If you manage to master this section alone, you’ll know 80%+ of all there is to know about how to make a resume.
There are a lot of best practices for writing your work experience. Before we dive into all the nits and grits, though, let’s start with the basics…
How to List Work Experience in a Resume
The standard format for your work experience is as follows:
- Job Title/Position – Your job title goes on top of each work experience entry. When the HR manager scans your resume, you want them to know, at a glance, that you have relevant work experience for the job.
- Company Name / Location / Description – Then, you mention the name of the relevant employer, as well as the location of the office you work/have worked in. In some cases, you may also want to briefly describe the company, if the organization is not a famous household name.
- Achievements and Responsibilities – This is the core of each work experience entry. Depending on your field, you want to list either your achievements or responsibilities. We’ll get more into the how’s and why’s of this in a bit.
- Dates Employed – The timeframe of your employment in each company. Not sure about the exact dates you worked somewhere? Don’t worry – you don’t have to be accurate by the day, as long as it’s close. The standard format expected by recruiters and employers is mm/yyyy (this is especially important when your job application will be parsed by an Applicant Tracking System).
If adding more than one job history entry to your resume or CV experience section, start with the most recent position and go back in reverse-chronological order from there. Use five or six bullet points to make your case for each entry’s responsibilities and achievements.
Also, your experience section resume bullet points should go near the top, just under your heading statement. However, if you have little or no professional experience, put your education section above your work history.
The work experience section of your resume where you describe your past jobs is the most crucial component of your whole job application. Make sure you get it right.
Here’s a real-life example:
As you can see, the work experience listings should be mentioned in reverse-chronological order – starting with the most recent job, going all the way back into the past.
Now that you know how to list your experience, we’re going to talk about how to write about your experience in such a way that you stand out from the competition.
Are you a student with no work experience? We’ve got you covered. Check out our guide to writing an internship resume here.
List Achievements When Possible
One of the most common resume mistakes is listing only responsibilities in your work experience section.
Here’s the thing – in most cases, the hiring manager knows what, exactly, your responsibilities were. Let’s say you’re a sales manager, for example. Your responsibilities would be:
- Reach out to potential clients over the phone or email.
- Maintain relationships with existing company clients and upsell relevant products.
- Tracking and reporting on leads in CRM.
Coincidently, this is exactly the same list of responsibilities for every sales manager. 90% of all other resumes probably mention just about the same thing.
So, to stand out, you want to focus on mentioning achievements in your resume instead. Or in simple terms, how exactly you helped the company grow, reach quarterly quotas, and so on.Correct Examples
- Exceeded sales team KPIs by 30%+ for 3 months straight.
- Generated over $24,000 in sales in 1 month.
- Generated leads through cold-calling
- Managed existing company clients
Keep in mind, though, that in some fields, there aren’t that many achievements you can mention. Let’s say you work in a warehouse. Your day-to-day responsibilities probably involve:
- Loading, unloading and setting up equipment on a daily basis.
- Package finished product and get it ready for shipping.
- Assist in opening and closing the warehouse.
In such fields, it’s pretty hard to distinguish yourself, so it’s totally OK to stick to responsibilities instead.
Tailor Your Resume to the Job
Robots are taking over. As hiring practices continue to modernize, larger companies are turning to applicant tracking systems (ATS) to give them a hand. ATS software automates the early stages of the recruitment process. How? They look for keywords and assign a score per candidate.
So, tailoring your resume is an absolute must, and your experience section is where you’ll do most of it. To create an ATS-friendly resume, go back to the job description and look for resume keywords related to your responsibilities. If you see duties you’ve performed, include them in your resume job description bullet points.
Did you know that over 70% of resumes submitted to job boards are never read? Yep, Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) keep your resume from being read by HR. An ATS (for resume) is software that helps companies filter through hundreds of resumes they receive per day.
So you’re probably wondering, “What gives?! What’s the point of perfecting your resume, if a robot can just say “No” and single-handedly destroy all the effort you put in?”
Well, don’t worry – getting past the Application Tracking System is not hard, as long as you know how to do it.
The key here is to tailor your resume to each job you apply. To do this, you need to mention the right keywords from the job ad in your resume.
So, let’s cover a simple example on how to do this. Let’s say that after reading the following job ad for the position of a digital marketer, you discover that the most critical requirements for the job are:
- 5+ years of experience in online marketing
- Social media marketing experience, with good knowledge of Facebook advertising
- B.A. in Marketing or Business Administration
- Experience managing 20,000 USD monthly advertising budget on Facebook
Now, to tailor your resume to these requirements, simply mention each in your resume, considering you have the relevant achievements and qualifications!
Tailoring your resume also involves knowing how long a resume should be. There are pros and cons for a one-page resume and the two-page resume but avoid anything longer.
Also, don’t use the same, tired words (“responsible for…”) in your resume job experience area. Instead, choose power words and action verbs which will keep them interested. Use present tense to describe your current job and past tense to talk about previous experience.
Finally, don’t use passive voice, as it feels evasive and unclear. Instead, choose active voice when writing a resume, as it’s concise and to the point:
|Growth team was managed by me.
|Managed growth team.
How much work experience do you include in your resume?
In principle, a resume should go back no more than 10-15 years. But the more experience you have, the less you should worry about the length of your resume. Don’t go trying to cram everything into a 1-page resume template if you’re a highly-experienced candidate.
If you’ve got over a decade’s worth of work experience, you’re probably confused about how much of it you mention in your resume. After all, If you had to list everything you’ve ever done, you’d end up writing a mini-novella.
Or, on the other hand, if you’re a newcomer to the job market, you probably don’t have ANY experience and are wondering what could you even mention.
Here’s how much information you’d mention in your resume depending on your level of experience:
- Job hunters with no experience – If you don’t have any experience, it might be a bit hard to fill in your work experience section. You can either keep it empty and focus on all the other sections, or fill it up with work experience in student organizations, non-profits, etc.
- Entry-level candidates – List all the work you’ve done up to now.
- Mid-level professionals – ONLY mention work experience relevant to the position you’re applying for.
- Senior professionals – List up to 15 years of relevant work experience MAX. If your recent experience is as a CEO, no one cares about how you started your career as a cashier in your teenage years.
How to List Education on Your Resume
Many people treat the education section as an afterthought, but you shouldn’t. It’s an essential part of your resume structure. The next section we’re going to cover is your Education. Let’s start with the basics – how to format the education section & what to mention there. Then, we’ll move on to tips & tricks that’ll help you stand out…
- Program Name. E.g.: “B.A. in Business Administration”
- University Name. E.g.: “New York State University”
- Years Attended. E.g.: “08/2008 – 06/2012”
- (Optional) GPA. E.g.: “3.9 GPA”
- (Optional) Honors. E.g.: Cum Laude, Magna Cum Laude, Summa Cum Laude.
- (Optional) Academic achievements. Any interesting papers you’ve written, courses you’ve excelled in, etc.
- (Optional) Minor. “Minor in Psychology”
Here’s an example:
Tips on perfecting your education section:
- If you don’t have any work experience, mention your education section first.
- Mention your latest educational entry on top.
- If you have a university degree, don’t mention your high school at all.
- ONLY mention GPA if you had a very impressive academic career (3.5 GPA plus).
As for mentioning your GPA on a resume, it’s only a good idea if you graduated recently and your GPA was high enough to impress employers: at least 3.5. Otherwise, just leave it off your application.
Pro Tip: Don’t lie in your resume or CV education section. A credit short of a diploma is not a diploma. Also, don’t round your GPA up. Anyway, many business degrees don’t necessarily improve job prospects.
Include Relevant Skills That Fit the Job Ad
Another must-have section in your resume is the “Skills” section. Your skills are crucial to making your resume relevant to the position (and attractive to employers). A good resume uses the job ad as reference and includes resume keywords to show you’re a good fit for the job. Here, you want to mention all your know-how that makes you the perfect candidate for the job.
There are 2 types of skills you can include when writing your resume:
Hard Skills (Measurable abilities). This can be anything from coding in Python to knowing how to cook Thai cuisine.
Soft Skills (Personal skills). These are a mix of social skills, communication skills, personal traits, career attributes, and so on. Leadership, critical thinking, management, and communication, just to name a few.
A good resume should cover both. Combined, these make up a skill set, which is a job seeker’s range of skills and abilities.
Pro Tip: Don’t list irrelevant skills! An IT resume doesn’t need to disclose your veterinary skills, and a resume for a chef shouldn’t include your ability to use Photoshop.
How to List Skills in Your Resume
Remember that job description you had handy from earlier? Read it again, paying attention to any specific skills that it mentions. If you have any of them, great: those are the keywords to put on your resume! Not only will that make your resume more ATS-friendly, you’ll also prove to recruiters that you’re the right fit for the job.
In case you’d like more guidance, here is a list of some common skills to put on a resume:
- Communication skills—These can include social skills, non-verbal communication, listening skills, and interpersonal skills.
- Technical skills—Knowledge required to perform specific tasks, like computer skills or clerical skills.
- Job-specific skills—Particular prowess the company specifically requires.
- Leadership skills and management skills—Ability to be a good manager, leader, and supervisor.
- Critical thinking skills—Ability to make your own, thought-based decisions and take initiative. Includes analytical skills, decision-making skills, and problem-solving skills.
- Organizational skills—A knack for planning, organizing, and seeing initiatives through.
- Transferable skills—for career changers, these are abilities you learned that can be carried over to your new position.
Pro Tip: Don’t just google “skills for a [industry] resume” and throw in the results. Take time to tailor your resume skills list to the job posting, as we mentioned earlier.
When mentioning skills in your resume, there are 3 essential steps to follow:
Step #1 – List Hard Skills with Experience Levels. For each hard skill you list, you want to mention your proficiency level:
As a rule of thumb, you can divide them by:
Beginner – You have some experience with the skill, whether it’s from some entry-level practice or classroom education.
Intermediate – You’ve used the skill in a work environment with a good level of understanding.
Advanced – You’re the go-to person for the skill in your office. You can coach other employees, and understand the skill on a high level.
Expert – You’ve applied this skill in more than a handful of different projects & organizations. You’re the go-to person for advice about the skill, not just in your office, but even amongst some of the best professionals in your field.
Make sure to NEVER lie about your skill levels. Otherwise, it’s going to be pretty awkward both for you and your employer.
Imagine your first task at work as an Illustrator – to create a graphic vector to go nicely with an article. If you end up delivering a hastily drawn stick figure colored with a paint bucket tool in Microsoft Paint, you’ll be out of the job before your probation period ends.
Step #2 – Tailor Your Skills to the Job. You might have some super rare, awesome skills, but they’re not always going to be useful. For example, it’s awesome that you know accounting, but would you really need it at your new job as a line cook? Exactly!
Take a look at the job ad and list 2-3 essential skills required for the job. For example:
- University Degree
- Tech-savy, with some background in CMS systems such as WordPress
- Thrives in a stressful environment & manages to juggle multiple tasks and deadlines
- Organizational and time management skills
- Excellent communication skills
- Self-reliant, with the ability to manage their own work
- Can-do attitude and an outside-the-box thinker
- Proficient in Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, Keynote and Pages
- Basic understanding of Office software – Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and Outlook
As you can see, the must-have skills here are Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, Keynote and Pages. A good-to-have is WordPress. You can also mention Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and Outlook, but it’s pretty much assumed that you know how to use them, as they’re required for most office jobs.
If you’re qualified, make sure to mention all relevant skills with respective proficiency levels in your “Skills” section.
Step #3 – Include Some Universal Skills – “Universal Skills” are the type of skills useful for almost any job out there. These are both soft skills (leadership, teamwork, critical thinking, etc.) and hard skills (Excel, Powerpoint, Photoshop, writing, etc.). Whatever job you’re applying to, chances are, these skills will in one way or another come in handy, so feel free to include them, even if they’re not specifically required for the position.
There are several ways to include a list of skills on a resume. For most, a simple skills section that includes 5-6 key abilities and your proficiency level is enough:
For specific job titles and technical skills, you may want to list your particular knowledge per item, to give them specific detail into the areas of the skill you excel at:
Pro Tip: Not every skill is worth mentioning on a resume! Saying you can use Microsoft Word is like bragging about being able to use a fork.
Other Important Resume Sections
Here’s the thing—everyone’s job resumes include those sections above. But what should a resume include to make it personalized?
Make your resume unique by including extra resume information. Additional sections on your resume can showcase just about anything about you, from your proud commendations to languages in which you’re fluent and more.
Here’s how to make your resume stand out with extra sections:
The sections we’ve covered so far are must-haves for any resume. They’re the bread-and-butter for any job application, and if you get them right, you’ll land any job you apply to.
The following sections, though, can really give you a boost here and there.
Are you bi-lingual? Or better, multi-lingual? You should ALWAYS mention that on your resume!
Even if the position doesn’t require you to know the specific language, it can still come in handy at some point. At the end of the day, it’s always better to know more languages than less.
To list languages in your resume, simply write them down and assign them the appropriate level:
- Proficient (Enough knowledge to pass by in a professional environment)
As a given, you should never lie about your language skills. You never know, your interviewer might turn out to be fluent in the language, or even be a native speaker!
Hobbies & Interests
Want to add some spice to your resume? The hobbies and interests section, while not a game-changer, can help show who YOU are as an individual. Who knows, maybe you and your interviewee have some hobbies in common?
If you end up with some extra space in your resume, don’t hesitate to show off your personality with a hobbies/interests section.
Listing internships on your resume is only OK if you’re fresh out of school, had one or two other jobs, or you haven’t been on the market for longer than 4–5 years.
If you’re the type of person to use your free time helping others, while expecting nothing in return, chances are that you’re the type of employee who’s in it for more than just the money. It leaves the impression that you’re a devoted, loyal employee.
Several studies show that you can boost your chances of getting hired simply by listing your volunteering experience. This holds especially true if you’re a student with next to no work experience.
Certifications & Awards
Do you have any awards that make you stand out in your field? How about certifications from industry experts?
Whichever the case is, as long as it’s relevant for the position you’re applying for, feel free to add it to your resume.
Let’s say, for example, you’re a Microsoft Cloud Engineer. Assuming you specialize in Microsoft Technologies, you’d definitely want to include all essential certifications, such as the Azure Solutions Architect Expert one.
Are you a freelance writer? Maybe a distinguished academic?
If you have any published works (online, or in an academic journal), you might want to include them in your resume. Make sure to include a URL, so the HR knows where to check your work!
Working on side projects can really show off your passion for your field. Whether they’re university class projects or part-time entrepreneurial endeavors, they’re both equally relevant.
Let’s say, for example, you worked on a mock software product as part of a competition in university. You went through every step of product creation, from ideation to creating a marketing strategy.
You can mention the project in your resume and stand a better chance at landing that business internship!
Or on the other hand, maybe you manage an Etsy store, selling hand-made arts & crafts to customers online. Mention all of it!
Hiring managers love employees who do cool work in their free time.
Complement Your Resume With a Cover Letter
You need to submit a cover letter, most definitely. Your cover letter or job application letter lets you expand upon things that you need to keep brief on your resume. Also, it allows you to speak easily in normal sentences!
Sound like an overkill? Think again. Most employers think a resume is not enough to make a decision.
Plus, a great cover letter that matches your resume will give you an advantage over other candidates. Here’s what a cover letter may look like:
Proofread, Save, and Email Your Resume the Right Way
You’re almost there, but don’t send it off just yet. Here are some resume best practices to keep in mind, so you can rest assured that you wrote the perfect resume:
Proofread & Double-Check
Double-check your CV or resume draft before sending it out. Scan your resume and cover letter (and email!) with a tool like Grammarly. Then, ask a friend or family member to triple-check. Better safe than sorry!
Perfecting Your Resume – FREE Checklist
Already done with your resume? Interested in seeing how it holds up? Go through our checklist for perfecting your resume and see where you stand! Free Checklist for Resume Writing
- Does your contact information section have all the must-have information?
- Is your contact email professional? E.g.: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Are you using the right resume format?
- Is your resume 1-2 pages?
- Did you include all the must-have sections in your resume?
- Did you list only the most relevant work experiences?
- Did you list achievements instead of responsibilities?
- Did you tailor your resume to the job ad you’re applying for?
- Did you mention the right amount of work experience in your resume?
- Did you list your education in your resume?
- Did you list all the right skills for the position you’re applying for?
- Did you add any other important resume sections?
- And finally, did you proof-read your resume? We’d recommend asking a friend or using software like Grammarly.
If you ☑’d all the points? Congrats! You’ve mastered all there is to know about how to write a resume, and you’re good-to-go to move on with your job search! If you missed some points, though, just go through your resume one more time and perfect it as much as possible.
4+ Effective Resume Examples
Knowing how to write a resume is one thing, actually creating a resume that stands out is something else entirely. Without inspiration, even top career experts might stumble on a roadblock or two.
Check out the following effective resume examples to get a better sense of what a good resume looks like…
Next Steps After Your Resume
Now that we’ve covered everything you need to know about how to create a resume, let’s talk cover letters & interviews.
After all, your resume is only the first step in your job search. To really land that job you deserve, you also need to craft a killer cover letter, and ace that upcoming interview.
How to Write a Convincing Cover Letter
Every job application consists of 2 parts – the resume and the cover letter. Now that we’ve covered the first, let’s briefly explain the latter.
Most job-seekers flinch when they hear that they have to write a cover letter. What do you even mention in a cover letter, anyway? If you were good at writing cover letters, you’d be applying for a writing job!
In reality, though, writing a cover letter is pretty simple, if you know its purpose.
You should think of a cover letter as a direct message to the hiring manager. You get to briefly explain why you’re such an awesome fit for the position. When we put it that way, it doesn’t sound as hard, does it?
Here’s a format you could follow:
- Introduce yourself (and leave an impression) – As a start, give a brief run-down on your work experience and mention why you’re interested in working for the company you’re applying for. You can also mention 1-2 of your top professional achievements to leave a good first impression.
- Explain how you’d excel at the job – Identify the top 3 requirements in the job ad. Then, dedicate one paragraph to explaining how you fulfil each requirement. So for example, if the requirement is “Facebook Advertising Experience,” mention how you have done Facebook ads in the past and how you’ve excelled at it.
- Wrap it up and say thanks – Thank the reader for reading your cover letter and propose the next steps. For example, “If you’d like to know more about my experience with Project XYZ, I’d love to chat!”
All clear? Just in case, you can also check out a real-life example below:
How to Ace Your Next Interview
You’ve perfected both your resume & cover letter. Now, it’s time for the next (and final) step – the dreaded job interview.
Whether you’re an extrovert or an introvert, you probably hate the interviewing process. After all, sitting there while someone’s prodding into your past experiences and judging the hell out of you isn’t the most fun experience.
Did you know, though, that most interviewers ask the same questions? Yep – all you have to do is learn how to answer some of the most common interview questions, and you’ll be an interview away from landing your dream job!
…And let’s wrap it all up!
If you’ve followed all of our advice until now, congrats! You’re probably an expert on how to make a resume.
To wrap it all up, let’s brush up on some of the most important lessons we’ve learned so far…
- Use the right resume builder. You don’t want to mess around with formatting for hours before even starting to work on your resume!
- Focus on achievements. Mention your achievements instead of responsibilities, so that you stand out from all the other applicants.
- Include the must-have sections. That is, resume summary, work experience, education, and skills.
- Tailor for the job. Everything listed on your resume should be relevant for the job you’re applying for.
- Perfect your cover letter. It’s as important as your resume, so make sure you pay as much attention to it!
Frequently Asked Questions about How to Make a Resume for a Job 2022
How to make a resume for a job?
First, read the job ad carefully to pick up keywords for your resume that you’ll target to pass the Applicant Tracking Software test. Next, create resume sections necessary to present yourself, your qualifications, and your strengths. The sections are:
Professional summary or objective
Other, such as awards, certificates and licenses, or languages
Depending on the industry and experience, you’ll have to think about which additional sections work best. But you definitely can’t write a resume without the other five.
How to write a resume for the first time?
Write your first resume with transferable skills in the skills and resume objective sections. In the work history part, add accomplishments examples that prove your qualities of a valuable employee, such as curiosity, eagerness to learn and assist, and developed communication skills. Internships and volunteering placements fit there perfectly. And most importantly—put your academic achievements right below the objective to highlight your educational advancement.
How to make a good resume that will impress recruiters?
An impressive resume is a resume that reads well and looks so, too. So before you get down to writing the nitty-gritty details of your professional and academic achievements, take care of the resume formatting and layout.
Only then move on to adding the biggest successes under each section: resume profile, experience, education, and skills. But—additional parts make the strongest impression, so don’t forget to include awards, certifications or licenses, or extracurricular activities to your resume. Say you’re an achiever, not a doer.
What is the format of a resume?
The chronological format is the most popular resume format suitable for every job applicant—an entry-level position, a specialist, or an executive. By choosing it, you decide to show off your career progression.
Functional format, or skills-based resume, presents you in the best light when changing careers. It concentrates on your skillset and leaves work history in the back seat.
Combination format, aka a hybrid, is a well-blended mixture of the chronological and functional formats. It’s the most complex one to write as it includes a skills summary and an extended experience section, which is apt for senior positions.
How to make a resume in Word?
You can spare yourself the trouble and use a pre-made Word resume template. But if you have quite some experience with text formatting (and plenty of time), start making your resume in Word. Create a clean layout, choose a font that reads well, and limit the number of graphic elements on the page not to overwhelm the ATS. Then, add the main and additional resume sections in an order suitable for the resume format. Save it in a Word or PDF file at the end, keeping in mind the instructions from the recruiter.
What does a good resume look like in 2022?
In 2022, you need to make even a stronger impression than in the previous years. Use a modern resume template and include the most important sections: personal information, summary or objective, employment history, education, and skills. Add your best achievements under each section and quantify them. Show your future employer that you’ve had an impact and will continue to bring results.
- Zety.com – How to Make a Resume: Step-by-Step Writing Guide for 2022
- Novoresume.com – How to Make a Resume in 2022 | Beginner’s Guide