Your resume gives a company its first impression of you, so it's important that your resume format is the right fit. From the moment the hiring manager takes a glance at your resume, he or she will be deciding whether to call you for an interview. Here are a few of the elements the hiring manager might notice first.
Your contact information should be centered at the top of the resume, and this is the first thing that recruiters will see. Listing your city of residence could help you get a job that's in town. If you're applying for jobs in a different state, consider leaving your mailing address off the resume.
Your email address can also say a lot about you as well. For example, if your email address is YourName@CurrentEmployer.com, the new company will know that you already have a job and will need to give two weeks’ notice before you can start working. If the email address is from an.edu domain, the manager might assume that you're a student without a lot of experience. The best type of email address is a professional-sounding one that’s made through your own website or through a site like Gmail.
The manager is also going to notice the overall presentation of your resume and will make a snap judgement about its appearance. For instance, the use of a decorative font might call your professionalism into question. Overall, your resume should have a consistent and clean look. If you make company names in the "experience" section bold, make the names of the schools in the "education" section bold as well. Keep consistent spacing throughout the resume. Nothing should stand out in an obtrusive way. Choose the right resume format for the particular job to which you are applying.
The First Section
Though you hope that the employer will read your entire resume, it's really the information in the first section that will encourage them to read on. Make sure that your resume format puts first what you think is most likely to impress the hiring manager. If your past work experience is a good fit with the position you're applying for, then place your experience in the first section. However, a skills section might be better suited for someone who's trying to break into a new field, and a recent college graduate without a lot of job experience might want to start the resume with the education section or a skills section. Whatever makes you stand out the most, move it up so it will be read.
Hiring managers also notice the length of the resume. While it may seem like listing all of your work experience shows your dedication, employers don't typically like to read long resumes. For most jobs, the resume should only be a page or two in length. In general, each page should represent about 10 years of experience, and you don't need to include every single job you've ever had. If you're in your 40s, leave off the supermarket cashier position you had to earn money for college. Include only the jobs that are the most relevant to the position for which you’re applying. An exception to the 10-year rule would be when you need an extra page to list published works or speaking engagements you've held or anything else that could help you land the job.
Creating the perfect resume format resume can be hard, but LiveCareer can help. With the variety of helpful hints and tricks you can learn, you’ll be sure to stand above the competition.