Choosing the best resume format can be a confusing process, especially when you're looking for work on an international scale. Different businesses around the world request a variety of different resume types, so you may be wondering if you're missing the mark on formatting, tone and style. To narrow down your options, consider your employment history, the requirements of the job to which you're applying and your unique strengths and abilities.
How Americans Can Write Resumes for Overseas Employment
Be aware that most employers will still expect either a standard chronological or functional resume format. A chronological resume organizes information based on a timeline. This type of resume is ideal for those whose resumes reflect a strong work history. Large international corporations usually favor this design.
On the other hand, if you have gaps between different jobs or a diverse work history, then you might want to opt for a functional resume format, which allows you to write categories based on your unique skills. This is the best resume format to use if you're changing careers of if you wish to emphasize skills obtained from jobs in the past. If you're writing a functional resume, then highlight skills you've developed outside of the workplace. It's acceptable to write about school, college, volunteer positions and even things you might have done in your personal or family life as long as they are relevant. Functional resumes are flexible in this respect, and you can generally include any skill set that pertains to the job for which you're applying. European and Australian educational institutions usually feel this is the best resume format for their purposes.
Which Sections Americans Should Include in Their Resumes
Functional styles may also serve as the best resume format if you're reentering the workforce after a period of absence. Start each section with a job title. Outline the responsibilities that you had at each of these jobs, and state the name of the company, its location and your employment dates.
Focus on how you applied your skills to your past jobs, and write a description of each in separate sections. For example, a quality job description may read, "Developed a new method of organizing information while attending to the needs of two software development clients." Remain concise at all times, and list your most recent job first, followed by other jobs you've held in reverse chronological order. One of the things that make this the best resume format for most Americans looking for work overseas is its ability to organize information neatly into this timeline structure.
Tips for Americans Writing Resumes
Don't forget to include educational experience. Add your date of graduation only if you are a recent graduate. Functional resume writers should dedicate a separate section to credentials. Never neglect any sort of professional certifications that are important for the type of work that you plan to do. Americans working in other countries may have to apply for local credentials in order to find work. Many employers now ask for references during the interview session, so don't bother to include them in your resume.
Take some time to ensure that you've selected the best resume format since this is an investment in your occupational future. With the advice, tips and tricks at LiveCareer, you'll have the tools you need to format a personalized resume perfectly suited to any job prospect. Investing a few extra moments now can help improve your job prospects later.