Professional Resumes

Written by Serena Berger
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A plethora of resume writing books are available that offer guidance to individuals creating professional resumes. One thing on which most guides agree is that your resume should be focused so that readers can quickly and easily identify the type of position in which you are interested and for which you are qualified. You should tailor any resume to a particular job or type of job, allowing prospective employers to understand exactly what you can bring to the position for which you are applying.

Immediately following your contact information at the top of the resume should be the profile, or summary, section of the resume. This is arguably the most critical section to nail, as it is your first chance to grab the reader's attention and compel him to read the rest of your resume in greater detail. Everything that you claim in this section should be substantiated by your education or experience in the rest of your resume.

Formatting Professional Resumes

Taking into account that your resume will initially only be scanned before being either rejected or passed on to the next level, you should position the most relevant information up front, followed subsequently by anything that stems from it. You should also use formatting to your advantage. If your entire resume is unformatted text, everything will blend together. You should use bold type, bullet points and italic type when necessary to emphasize certain points on your resume. If you are applying online and the site specifically states not to use these formats, you might use capital letters for headings to break up the sections of your resume so that it is more appealing to the eye, or use characters which occur on the keyboard for bullets.

When possible, you should cite specific results that you have generated. Rather than saying that you contributed positively to the company's profitability, your claim will be stronger if you can give an exact figure and detail what lead up to it. If you have been in a supervisory position, you may want to say exactly how many workers were in your division so that potential employers can understand the depth of your experience.


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