Software testing is a unique profession that requires a broad set of computer science and communication skills. When you’re considering how to format a resume for a job search, your best bet is to think about your personal software development experience and unit testing knowledge. Your resume gives you a chance to show employers that you understand the importance of efficiency and economy.
1. Choose the sections you want to include in your resume. This overall framework will add structure to your information and make it easier for employers to read. When it comes to deciding how to format a resume, take into account your accomplishments and work history as these details will determine which sections you choose as well as their order. For example, if you’ve just graduated from college or you’re switching careers, you probably don’t have a lot of relevant experience. In this case, improve your resume format by placing your skills and education sections above your accomplishments and experience sections.
2. Add keywords to your skills section and throughout your resume. Keywords can be any industry word that employers may use to search for your resume in a database. In software testing, relevant keywords can include programming languages and frameworks you know fluently. You should also think about how to format a resume with a good organization of information. For example, list your major accomplishments in order of importance, including words and phrases that indicate useful experience and knowledge.
3. Quantify your career information whenever possible. As a software tester, the best advice on how to format a resume would be to think of specific numbers to describe your abilities and achievements. For instance, include a time frame for which you successfully debugged a program or a specific number of tests you designed for a past employer. These quantitative career facts help prospective employers understand the value you can bring to an organization, but it’s a bad idea to embellish these numbers because they’ll probably be verified at some point. Resume padding may be tempting, but it can seriously backfire if your work history is checked after you’ve been hired.
3. Keep an updated version of your resume handy at all times. If you want to know how to format a resume, it helps to know something about the company you’re applying to. By constantly updating your skills, work history and accomplishments, you can quickly develop a unique resume for every potential employer. In general, it takes 10 resume submissions to get one callback, so highly targeted writing is a must. To increase your chances of an interview, find out what type of testing a company does before sending a resume. This strategy also gives you a chance to quantify your abilities for a particular employer.
4. Use a chronological format for your experience section. Most employers consider the functional resume to be a red flag because it usually hides gaps in work history, among other problems. It’s best to include a chronological list of past employers, starting with the most recent and working your way in reverse order. In general, use one page for every 10 years of experience. As a software tester, you don’t need to include experience from over 15 years ago.
A resume can be an effective tool in your quest to land a software testing interview. If you’re still looking for ideas on how to format a resume, you’ll find that the tips and techniques on LiveCareer will aid you in your job search.