Employment Guide

Job Search Documents

Resume Writing A well-written resume is one of your most valuable tools in a job search. Its purpose is to win you an interview. It does this by summarizing your education, work experience, and other qualifications to show the employer that you have what it takes to be successful in the position. You should consider developing three versions of your resume: A Print Version - designed with bulleted lists, italicized text, and other highlights, ready to print, mail, or hand to potential contacts and interviewers. A Plain Text Version - a plain text file ready to copy and paste into online forms, post in online resume databases, and submit to employers using “Applicant Tracking”software. An E-mail Version - attached as a PDF. Sometimes Word documents do no export into original formatting , so locking formatting in place via a PDF document is recommended. Create original resumes in Word, but when complete, save and send in PDF. Plan and Prepare • Schedule an appointment with a Career Services counselor to assist you. • Review resume writing resources found on the Career Services website or the Writing Center. • Make a list of all your work, education, student organizations, athletics, volunteer activities, honors, awards, hobbies, military experience, etc. Identify the responsibilities,accomplishments, and skills developed as appropriate for each of these activities. • Determine the position(s) you will target. • Identify the skills, knowledge, and qualities needed for the position(s). From your work, education, and extracurricular history, identify the skills, knowledge, and qualities that are transferable to the position(s) you are targeting. • Make your resume easy to read. It should be symmetrical, balanced and uncrowded. Use appropriate white space between sections. Keep writing in sections to short bulleted statements. Be uniform and consistent. For example: If a period is at the end of one job description statement, a period should be at the end of all description statements; if a job title is in boldface, all job titles should be in boldface. • Use action words such as “supervised”,“managed”, or “directed” instead of passive phrases like “responsible for” or “duties” included” (See “Action Verbs”on pg. 22). • Use keywords that an employer may search for if they scan your resume electronically For instance, “SQL Database Programmer”is generally easier to find in a database

than“Designed and implemented departmental database” or “Manager for Windows engineers, Microsoft Corp” instead of “Responsible for a team of ‘cutting edge’ computer engineers” (see job descriptions or ONET (Occupational Information Network http://online.onetcenter.org for keywords for your occupation). • For your Word Document version use italics, capital letters, bullets, boldface, and underlining for visual appeal and emphasis. • Review the sample resumes in this guide or on our website. • Determine which format (chronological, functional or combination) best suits you and your career path. • Current students and recent college grads should limit their resume to one page. Talk to your counselor for exceptions. • Absolutely no errors. No typographical errors. No spelling errors. No grammar, syntax, or punctuation errors (pay particular attention to use the correct past and present tense). No errors of fact. • Reproduce your resume on quality paper with a high-quality copier, laser printer, or printing service. • Prepare a cover letter to accompany your resume (See “Job Search Letters” in this Guide or on our website.)


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