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With modern hiring managers receiving up to 50 applicants or more for a single job posting, making a memorable first impression has never been more critical. Using a clean-cut, easy-to-read contemporary resume template for Word can help you clearly articulate your most valuable key assets. You already know you are perfect for the job. Make it clear to employers and pave the way to a face-to-face interview with a well-written resume designed to fit the needs of the modern job seeker.
Sections Your Resume Should Include
Not only does the contemporary resume template for Word structure your document to enhance intelligibility and precision, it is also designed for ideal compatibility with recruiting and hiring computerized databases by utilizing proven strategies such as strategic keyword placement. The elegant look of classic resumes is retained in a simplified, cleaner version, while your resume is optimized to land at the top of the stack. Continue reading to learn exactly how to structure each section of your resume to get noticed by employers and land that first interview.
Writing Your Summary Statement
Your first step when using the contemporary resume template for Word is putting together your summary statement. This is your first introduction, so it is important to pack a punch. Using no more than three sentences, summarize the traits you believe will be most important to the employer. Not sure what to write? Consider drawing keywords and phrases directly from a job post to tailor each resume to different positions you may be considering. Hirers use these to communicate exactly what they are looking for. Don’t be afraid to turn this around and use it as a tool in your favor.
Writing with bullet points and in sentence form are both acceptable formats. Keep it short and to the point with no more than three sentences or bullet points in total. Make sure you include your professional title, and include the most relevant, specific skill sets you would bring to the position to which you are applying along with one or two pertinent personality traits.
Read further for a few examples of strong summary statements:
Bilingual project manager with 12 years of experience. Successfully adhered to budget and schedule constraints while managing over 50 employees in fast-paced, deadline-oriented environment.
Receptionist with six years’ experience. Very efficient and detail oriented. Experience with multi-line phone systems, email, and filing systems.
• Financial analyst with four years of experience.
• In-depth knowledge of financial and enterprise resource planning ERP software.
• Skilled verbal and written communication skills.
Writing Your Skills Section
The skills section is exactly what it sounds like, a place to emphasize and highlight the skill set most important to your potential employer. The contemporary resume template for Word is calculated to showcase your key assets in a succinct, visually decisive style. Use the following tips to tailor this section to fit the needs of each of your intended positions.
• Keep it simple. Specific details are best used in the work history and summary sections. Ô
• Start with your most important skill set.
• Include a minimum of six skills.
Here’s an example of a skills section for a receptionist job:
• Experience in invoice, financial statement and spreadsheet production.
• Advanced level of competency in all Microsoft Office products.
• Can skillfully multitask between phone, email and in-person interactions.
• Knowledge of business and management principles necessary for strategic planning.
• Friendly, professional demeanor.
• Strong attention to detail and service orientated.
Writing Your Work History Section
Use your work history section of the contemporary resume template for Word to provide concise, relevant details and to underscore your on-the-job accomplishments for all of your previously held positions.
• Start with strong action verbs such as “authorized,” “proposed,” and “developed,” rather than weaker linking verbs such as “was” or “went.”
• Bring out the details. Measurable achievements and specific projects are well suited for this section.
• Add in keywords to link your previous positions to the one to which you are applying.
Here are some examples of strong work history sections:
Customer Service Representative
• Reduced frequency of customer complaints by 35 percent within first year of hire.
• Promoted from temporary, seasonal position to full time manager of 13 regular employees.
• Coached new hires in specific customer retention improvement techniques.
• Increased process efficiency by eliminating waste and removing previously undetected malfunctioning units.
• Instituted CAD software training program for all new hires.
• Coordinated the installation and implementation of latest SAS analytical software.
• Increased sales output by 25 percent within three quarters.
• Proposed and initiated successful marketing campaign to target previously untapped demographics.
• Collaborated with IT team to transfer all paper-based record keeping to digital methods.
• Streamlined and systematized tax return procedures.
Writing Your Education Section
Easy readability is central to your education section. The contemporary resume template for Word makes sure employers can quickly glean all the information they need about your educational background while shifting the focus to your most standout accomplishments. Don’t forget to include any additional coursework outside of your degree such as certificates and seminars if they apply directly to your intended position.
Bachelor of Science in Marketing, 2001
Western Washington University Ð Bellingham, WA
Courses included: Marketing Strategy and Management, Consumer Behavior and Customer Satisfaction
One semester Study Abroad: Emphasis in Financial World Markets
University of Syracuse Ð London, U.K.
Using Keywords in your Contemporary Resume Template for Word
Keywords represent the specific hot-ticket attributes employers are looking for. Recruiting software also uses keyword searches to instantly scan through sometimes thousands of resumes at a time. Using these significant words and phrases in your work history, skills and summary statement in particular is a highly effective way to instantly elevate your candidacy.
Here is an example for a receptionist position:
• Interpersonal skills
Summary statement example:
• Seven years of reception and administrative experience.
• Multitasked between needs of walk-in clientele and making and receiving phone calls and emails.
Skills example: Strong communication and interpersonal skills.
Work history section example: Collaborated with technical team to implement and train staff on newest HR software.
Using Action Verbs in Your Contemporary Resume Template for Word
A lack of action verbs implies passivity. Using verbs that intone performance and actual “doing” creates an impression that you are an employee that makes things happen. Great action verbs to use include analyzed, coordinated, supervised, consulted, synthesized and conducted.
• Implemented a new system of organizing new hire paperwork, resulting in 10% efficiency.
• Managed 100+ of new client accounts per year.
• Executed initiatives to streamline intake processes under strict deadline constraints.
• Minimized quarterly losses by identifying and correcting trade entry errors.
• Collaborated with developers to improve risk systems.
• Analyzed internal trends to optimize revenue generation.
• Organized annual international awards ceremony.
• Prepared promotional supplies and literature.
• Supervised safety and security operations.
• Initiated system-wide upgrade of accounting software.
Adding Metrics to Your Contemporary Resume Template for Word
Metrics, or measurable quantities, provide tangible pieces of evidence for employers to hold onto. Though they are all too commonly left out of the majority of resumes, quantifiable achievements are often specifically sought out by recruiters. Providing numbers enhances your overall credibility, often making the difference between that sought-after interview invitation and the rejection pile. Here are a few examples of how to include metrics in your resume:
• Increased sales output by 15 percent within six months of hire.
• Oversaw publication of 13 successful grant applications.