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Thursday, June 10, 2010

How to make the resume impressive

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Resume is a written document that lists your, skills, educational background and work experience. It is used as a as a promotional brochure about you for job seekers.

The purpose of a resume is to disclose your accomplishments and qualifications to the admissions committee. You need to show the committee what you have accomplished and where your experience lies. Your strategy should be to emphasize the experience and skills that a particular school is looking for. Your resume is also an example of your communication and organizational skills. What should a Resume consist?

  1. Summary 
    Candidates generally don’t mention the summary but it gives a very good impression.When the client sees your resume, He will read the summary of your resume, so that he/she will get complete idea about your work. It is suggested to include around 10 to 15 points in summary. So the first page (full page or 75% page) tells about your summary. 
  2. Contact section: 
    Who are you and how can you be reached?
    Begin your resume with your name by capitalizing or using bold type. Include street address, city, state, and zip code. Include phone number(s). 
  3. Objective statement: 
    This component of the resume can be very challenging to write. The purpose of the objective statement is to inform the reader of your career goals and qualifications. The statement should be written specifically enough to let the reader know that you have a focus to your job search. If you are considering a variety of objectives, you may want to relay the relevant objective in an accompanying cover letter.
  4. Education section: 
    What have you learned?
    Information about your undergraduate and graduate education should be included in your resume. List the name and location of the institution, time period or date of the degree received. Start with your most recent degree or the program in which you are currently enrolled and list other degrees or relevant education in reverse chronological order.

    Highlight your degree by using bold type, capital letters or underlining.
    If the degree is relevant to your job objective, begin with degree and emphasis, followed by university, location of university, and date of graduation or anticipated date of graduation.

    If degree/program is not directly related to current job objective, begin with the university, followed by the location, degree and emphasis, and graduation date.
  5. Technical Skills and Certifications 
    What extra qualifications you have?
    This section is most effective when you have experiences from your education that are impressive and/or directly relate to your objective. Adding this section is useful when you have developed technical skills and specific knowledge on certification courses rather than work experience. This section can be used to highlight coursework, research, or special knowledge that complements your objective. This information is useful in a resume of entry level candidates and recent graduates.
  6. Experience/Employment section: 
    What can you do? What have you done?
    A summary is most appropriated for someone with substantial experience, for someone who is changing careers and wants to demonstrate transferable skills.
  7. Professional activities and accomplishments: 
    How have you been recognized?
    This part of your resume offers you the opportunity to provide insight into your career development. You should be selective and complete, listing such items as memberships in professional associations and offices held, professional registrations, honors received, and major articles or publications you have written. Do not list every article or every speech you may have given or every conference you have attended. Emphasize quality - this section of the resume should help you to demonstrate you are current and active in your profession.
  8. Projects: This plays a major role in selecting your resume.
    write a breif simmary about the project in a small paragraph.Mention the objectives and findings of your project.your objectives should be very clear and they must satisfy the objectives.

Resume Preparation Do's and Don'ts 
  • Make sure your name, address, and a phone number appear on your resume and all correspondence, preferably at the top of the page.
  • Keep your resume to one page whenever possible.
  • Keep the number of fonts you use to a minimum -- two at the most.
  • Use a font that is easy to read.
  • The information must be complete and accurate. If the space is inadequate for a certain situation, explain the situation on an attached page.
  • Print your resume on white or cream paper using a good-quality printer.
  • Second- and third-generation photocopies must be avoided
  • Print on one side of the paper only
  • Perform a spell check on your finished resume.
  • Carefully read every word in your resume.
  • Be consistent in your use of punctuation.
  • Always put periods and commas within quotation marks.
  • Avoid using exclamation points.
  • The duties you currently perform should be in present tense (i.e., write reports)
  • Duties you may have performed at past jobs should be in past tense (i.e., wrote reports).
  • Capitalize all proper nouns.
  • If you begin a sentence with a numeral, spell out that numeral
  • Be careful about the difference of the following words

All right (correct), alright (this is not a word)
Affect (to bring about change), effect (result)
Personal (private), personnel (staff members)
Role (a character assigned or a function), roll (to revolve).
Accept (to receive), except (to exclude)

  • Don't go beyond two pages with your resume .It's good to keep your resume to one page, but if you have a lot of experience, two pages may be more appropriate. If your resume spills beyond one page, but you have less than a half page of material for the second page, it may be best to condense to one page.
  • Don't ever lie on your resume.
  • Don't use personal pronouns (I, my, me) in a resume.
  • Don’t switch tenses within your resume
  • Don’t overuse capitalization, italics, underlines, or other emphasizing features.
  • Don't use words with which you aren't familiar
  • Don't mix noun and verb phrases when describing your jobs. Preferably, use concrete action verbs consistently
  • Don't use expressions like "Duties included," "Responsibilities included," or "Responsible for." That's job description language, not accomplishments-oriented resume language that sells.
  • Don't emphasize skills and job activities you don't want to do in the future, even if they represent great strengths for you. In fact, you may not even want to mention these activities. Why describe how great your clerical skills are if you don't want to do clerical work in the future?
  • Don't include hobbies or other irrelevant information on a resume. In most cases, they are seen as superfluous and trivial. An argument can be made that hobbies are interview conversation starters or that they make you seem well-rounded, but they are generally seen as fluff or filler.
  • Don't list references right on your resume. References belong in a later stage of the job search. Keep references on a separate sheet and provide them only when they are specifically requested.

Tips for Scanable and E-Mail Resumes: 
The job search is moving into the electronic age, so make sure your resume is on the cutting edge. Employers who receive several hundred resumes for each advertised opening and a couple of hundred unsolicited resumes now have a better way to manage all the paperwork. How? By investing in electronic databases which store resumes and are quickly accessible by a few simple computer commands.

Resumes may be entered into a system using an optical scanner and the images stored, thereby building a database of applicants and relevant skills. Employers then access candidates by searching the database for qualifications.
Your resume is a place to express individuality and style. However, some fonts and style choices could present too much of a challenge for the scanner. 

If you follow the tips below, the system will be better able to extract your information accurately.
  1. Font - Standard serif and sans serif fonts work best. Avoid ornate fonts and fonts where the characters touch. Font size is also important. Sizes between 10 points and 14 points work best.
  2. Italics and underlining may cause problems for the scanner, especially if combined. Use boldface for emphasis.
  3. Vertical or horizontal lines should be used sparingly. When used, leave at least a quarter of an inch of space around the line. Avoid graphics and shading or shadowing.
  4. Do not compress or expand the space between letters or lines. Also, do not double space within sections.
  5. The resume you submit should be an original. It should be printed with a laser printer on white or light- colored 8.5 x 11 inch paper. Print on one side only.
  6. Resumes which have been folded, stapled or otherwise mutilated will not scan well.

      Types of Resumes: 
      The chronological and functional resumes, or some combination of these two formats, are the standard types of resumes used by job seekers in today's employment market. To select the type which best supports your needs, review the following information.
      Chronological Resume (Preferred) 
      In this type of resume, job history is organized chronologically with the most recent information first. Job titles and organizations are emphasized and duties and accomplishments are described in detail. A chronological
      resume is easy to read, since it highlights names of employers and job titles, and emphasizes career growth. It is best suited to those whose career goals are clear and whose job objectives are aligned with their work history.
      A chronological resume is advantageous when: 
      • your recent employers and/or job titles are impressive
      • you are staying in the same career field
      • your job history shows progress
      • you are working in a field where traditional job search methods are utilized (e.g., education, government).

      A chronological resume is not advantageous when: 
      • you are changing careers
      • you have changed employers frequently
      • you want to de-emphasize age
      • you have been absent from the job market.

      Functional Resume: 
      Stay away from a function resume if at all possible. In a functional resume, skills and accomplishments developed through work, academic, and community experiences are highlighted. Your skills and potential can be stressed and lack of experience or possible gaps in work history de-emphasized. However, it is important to realize employers often view functional resumes more critically for these very same reasons.
      The functional resume is advantageous when: 
      you want to emphasize capabilities not used in recent work experience;
      you want to emphasize personal qualities relevant to the job such as industriousness, cooperative attitude, related interests, and aptitudes

      you want to focus on capabilities rather than lengthy employment history
      you are changing careers/re-entering the job market
      your career growth in the past has not been continuous and progressive
      you have a variety of unrelated work experiences;
      your work has been free-lance, consulting, or temporary in nature.
      The functional resume is not advantageous when: 
      • you have little work experience
      • you want to emphasize promotions and career growth
      • you are working in highly traditional fields, such as teaching, accounting, and politics, where employers should be highlighted.

      Combination Resume: 
      This format combines the best elements of the chronological and functional types. It presents patterns of accomplishments and skills in a section headed "Areas of Effectiveness" or "Qualifications Summary." But it also includes a brief work history and education summary. This format is advantageous for those who wish to change to a job in a related career field.

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