I hated writing a resume. I never know what to include or how to convey my work history. I’m sure I’m not the only one that shares the same feelings.
I have reviewed a lot of resumes and I’ll try to provide some useful tips. Mileage may vary. The goal in this post is to spur ideas on content and not physical format. I’ll provide an example to view. Just connect the dots.
At the top should be your personal information to include name, phone number, address, and email address. A no brainer, right? I have had people have list wrong phone numbers, and quirky email addresses. Stud69@hotmail.com is not something that should be listed on a professional document. So make sure you have one that doesn’t speak to the personal side of your life. Also, I find people that put everything one line after the other centered in the middle of the page.
123 Main St, Madison, WI
The above is good, but you’re using a couple lines more than you need. Try this for an alternative
123 Main St · 555.555.5555 · email@example.com
I think you can see the benefits, no?
I tend to not look at an objective. There hard to write and can be covered with a decent cover letter. You’re applying to an IT job and “you’re seeking an interesting and challenging career as an IT professional” no kidding. Nuke it.
What goes next as you go down the page depends on your experience and background. If you have little IT experience you’ll want to list IT skills, certs, or formal education-if it the area of study is IT. If you have IT experience I would then start with work experience.
Always list experience starting with your most recent. Company name, role/title and dates of employment should be here as well as bullets regarding the job.
The bullets should include quantifyable results. This won’t happen for every job and for every bullet, but it’s something to keep in mind. Anything you can list that either says you saved the employer time or money goes a long way. Many people list duties and responsibilities. Much of that is what people in the IT industry already knows given the role you’ve listed. Think outside the box a bit.
Make sure you make it clear when you relate to numbers or quantity. It’s easy to say you took over 50 calls per day when working a help desk job, but is that good or bad? Some places may think that’s nothing, so make sure you let the person know what that means. You can do that by using comparisons.
-Handled an average 50 calls per day when the department average was 25 per day.
That’s someone that’s doing more work than the average person. You can word it any way you want, but you get the idea.
So ask yourself “so what?” You managed Windows Servers. Did you manage 50 servers or 5?
I think this gives you a starting point. Next we’ll provide some sample layouts and some additional comments on resume content.