There are a plethora of questions from job seekers on the topic of resumes and their proper formatting. The top 10 resume format addressed below cover some of the key elements of a good resume.
Resume Format Questions: The Basics
1. Do I need more than one version of my resume?
You should have a customized resume for each industry you’re applying to get into; a data entry resume would look quite different from a server resume. Employers are likelier to be impressed if they see your resume as highly suited to their job as opposed to a one-size-fits-all resume.
2. What are the most important aspects of a resume? How can I remember them?
The most important aspects of an effective resume are: focus, appearance, keywords, transferable skills and accomplishments. These key aspects can be remembered in the form of a six-letter acronym, FAKTSA.
Resume Format Questions on Presenting Education and Experience
3. What goes first, education or experience?
This depends on whether your experience or your degree is the best selling point. List the more relevant of the two sections first. Put education first if you're still a college student or about to graduate. Generally, you should move your experience section to the forefront a year to 18 months after your graduation.
4. What should I always put under the education section?
If you recently graduated or are about to, the education section should include the graduation month and year; however, leave out graduation date if it’s more than a few years ago. Include majors, minors and coursework if they are relevant. Always list the name of your degree first, and if you have multiple degrees, start with the most advanced. Include the name, city and state of the college you attended.
5. Should my other major heading be "experience" or "employment" or "work history"?
Use "experience" as a major heading because it enables you to list activities that don't fall under paid employment, such as internships, volunteer work and other valuable experiences.
6. How should items be formated under my "experience" section?
List information in the following order:
- Job title
- Company name, city, and state
- Dates of employment
- A few accomplishments listed in bulleted form
7. What do I do about employment gaps?
One way you can de-emphasize these gaps is to use a chrono-functional resume format. When you don’t use the strict format of chronological style, you won’t draw attention to gaps in your work history. You may wish to frame periods of unemployment as times of self-employment, project work or consulting, but only do so if you can be honest about it.
Other Resume Questions
8. What other sections could be included on my resume?
- Public speaking, presentations
- Military experience
- Affiliations/memberships (non-controversial groups)
- Languages (ability to speak, read and write)
9. As an entrepreneur transitioning back to the workplace, how can I make the most of my resume?
Emphasize the transferable skills from your entrepreneurial experience. Many employers value candidates who can handle situations involving startup and turnaround.
10. What are the most important design elements for my resume?
Balance the material on your page and use up to two fonts. Type is ideally between 11 and 12 point. Be consistent with your headings so that readers can easily follow a pattern.
Even with the resume format questions that have been answered, you may still need more sure ways to get your resume in top shape. For these purposes, LiveCareer has plenty of advice and examples of great resumes.