The goal of a resume is to get the interview. A resume does not get you the job! The resume is your first impression to a prospective employer, and therefore it needs to be well-written, factual, and relevant to the job in which you are applying.
A resume is a marketing tool, designed to sell you to a prospective employer. A resume is not for your past; it is to market yourself for the next job! You need to answer the four questions an employer has in their mind when reading your resume:
An employer will visually scan your resume for 30-45 seconds. In that time you must attract them to your resume, tell them what you want, and most importantly, what you can do for them.
While there are several technical terms for the different types of resumes out there, you should use a format that presents your qualifications best. No two people should have the same resume. There is an individuality that must shine through a resume - your voice that speaks to the employer. This is why you should never use a template resume from MS Word or any other resume software program.
Resumes should contain all information that is relevant to the job in which you are applying, in order that best sells you to what least sells you.
Section 1: Objective or Professional Summary
Section 2: Education
Section 3: Internship/Work Experience
Section 4: Volunteer/Campus Activities
Section 5: Awards and Accomplishments
Section 6: Skills (Computer, Language, etc)
*Remember: A resume is set-up to your personal qualifications, so the order of these sections may differ. Example: If your Campus and Volunteer Activities are stronger than your Work Experience, you would change the order on the resume.
Ideally, a college student or soon-to-be college graduate should try to limit their resume to one (1) page. However, if you have excellent and relevant information that will help you gain the interview then it is all right to use an additional page.
If you have a specific job title or career path, then yes, use an objective that is well thought-out, well-written, and specific to the type of position in which you are applying.
If you do not have a specific position, then do not use an objective. Avoid boring and generic statements that really don’t say anything. Consider using a Professional Summary that provides a general overview of your skills and experience in 2-3 sentences.
Here are some suggestions that work!
A cover letter is the companion document to the resume; it is an introductory letter that guides an employer through your resume. A well-written, well-set up cover letter will encourage an employer to read your resume the way you want it read. The letter will highlight your specific skills and traits for the job, point out your related experiences, and explain how you will perform on the job.
Cover letters absolutely are necessary. You should begin to think of Resume and Cover Letter as one word: Resumecoverletter. When someone asks for your resume, you also provide the cover letter.
The letter works in your favor, and will almost subconsciously tell the employer how to read your resume.
There is a basic and effective outline to writing a cover letter. Following our cover letter outline allows your cover letter to be personal, yet work effectively in guiding the employer through your resume.
Check out the full outline and letter samples in the box to the right
Sure. Here are several:
The best way to send your resume and cover letter is as one file – when the employer opens that one attached file, it starts with the cover letter and scrolls down to the resume. This is preferred, so now your file is always together and an employer only has to open one attachment.
In the body of your email you can simply state:
Dear Mrs. Doe,
Attached is my resume and cover letter for the _______ position.
I look forward to speaking with you about this great opportunity.
Absolutely! While we are not a resume writing service, we will happily sit down with you to teach you the mechanics of writing a resume and cover letter. We also offer resume and cover letter review services. Additionally, you can attend a resume/cover letter writing workshop to get the help you need.
For review, submit your resume and cover letter on Charger Career Link.