As I’m sure many of my readers know, applying to jobs and internships can sometimes place added stress on top of an already busy schedule. If you’re new to job applications, writing a resume can seem like an intimidating task [after all, it’s one of the first impressions an employer will have of you]. Fortunately, over the years I’ve had great mentorship and received invaluable advice on how to create a memorable resume. Here are my three favorite resume building tips:
Make your bio concise, but relevant
When it comes to boasting about all of your skills and experience, many of us can go on and on for days [and reasonably so: we’re proud of our accomplishments!]. But, that’s what a cover letter is for. In a resume, keep your “about” section to a paragraph. Briefly touch on the most important experiences that will be mentioned in both your cover letter and on your resume, but avoid getting into the nitty gritty details [for now].
Add visual elements where necessary
This element is subjective, depending on your field. As a magazine journalist [which is a creative field], I’ve found that I have a bit more creative freedom to express myself on a resume. One of the ways I like to do this is through the use of colors. Personally, I find black ink on white paper to be boring, so adding some color makes me feel like my resume may have a better chance of standing out from other applicants. HOWEVER, be smart in your color choices, hot pink and lime green probably aren’t the best options when presenting yourself to the professional world.
Another way I like to add a visual element to my resume is through the use of icons or graphics. In my “skills” section, I wanted to rank my skill level for each quality listed. Rather than use basic bubbles to do so, I opted for stars which add just enough flare without distracting from the rest of the page.
Organize your experience based on relevance from most recent to oldest
When it comes to experience, I’m sure most of my #Girlboss readers have enough to fill a full page and then some. Since resumes are expected to be only a page long, it can be difficult to figure out how to organize your previous jobs. The best way to do so is to think about the job you’re applying to and start with the experience that is most relevant [or most similar] to that specific employer. From there, list your content from most recent to oldest. Right away, employers will be able to see the experience that makes you the most qualified for the job. Plus, if they decide to stop reading halfway through [which is a possibility], your most impressive accomplishment won’t be missed. Even if you can’t fit all of your experience on one page, there’s always the opportunity to discuss additional jobs and positions during your interview or in your cover letter!
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