When looking for a job as an office assistant, knowing how to format a resume can make the difference between a good and a great first impression. A resume will serve as a concise documentation of your professional achievements as they relate to typing, data entry, document drafting and information management. Knowing how to format a resume that reflects these areas of expertise can help you land an interview for the job you’re seeking.
1. For an office assistant position, use a chronological resume format. This is the format used most commonly in today’s job market. It lists your achievements in reverse chronological order, meaning your most recent experience will come first.
2. First, for the header of your resume, type your name in a bold, plain text font. On the next line, type your city, state and zip code, and list your phone number and email address in the following line.
3. Next, create a summary section. Learning how to format a resume involves writing a concise introduction of your professional history. Employers should be able to get a brief snapshot of your abilities and administrative skills in this section, which will allow them to determine at a glance whether you’re likely to be a good fit for their company. Make this section engaging so that the person reading it will want to continue reading your resume.
4. After the summary, create a highlights section. In this portion of your resume, use bullets points and write concisely. Include skills that pertain to your knowledge of computer operating systems and programs, planning experience, management skills or other personality traits that you feel make you well suited to be an office assistant. Feel free to use a table to save space on your resume.
5. Following your highlights, include the experience section. This is where the potential employer will see your professional experience as well as your achievements in your past jobs. Begin this list with your most recent employment. For each job, list the company’s name, the city and state, your position at the company and the dates you worked there. Under that, list your specific achievements while on the job. Avoid using terms like “responsibilities” or “accountable for” when creating this section.
6. Finally, incorporate an education section. Giving priority to degrees you’ve attained, list the name of the school, the city, state and country if outside the U.S, your field of study and the degree you received. You can list any coursework that you feel is related to your employment as an office assistant below that basic information.
7. With all of these sections complete, you’re still not quite done with your resume. Before submitting it, ask yourself some questions about how to format a resume:
- Is it free from typos or grammatical errors?
- Do you include one page per 10 years of experience?
- Is your experience section recent? Emphasize jobs that you held within the last decade, and avoid listing work experience that is over 15 years old.
Now that you know how to format a resume, you’re ready to go after that job you’re seeking. Ultimately, getting a position as an office assistant will depend on your ability to sell yourself in the interview, but when you take a little time to find the right format, your resume will stand out from the competition.
LiveCareer users will benefit from a selection of resume formats, templates and samples.