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Resume Writing

Resumes are one of the most important marketing tools in your job search. An effective resume will increase your chances of getting an interview.  Use resumes as part of your ad campaign to market your skills, education and experience to an employer. Your resume may be the first impression you make, so make it a good one!  

Job Seekers use resumes to: 

  • GET AN INTERVIEW 
  • Make a good first impression 
  • Highlight skills, education, training, and experience 
  • Apply at job fairs, make cold calls, and network effectively 

Employers use resumes to: 

  • SCREEN APPLICANTS 
  • Identify your skills, education and experience 
  • Evaluate your written communication skills 
  • Use as an agenda during the interview 

Employers appreciate applicants who make the effort to write a professional resume.  The amount of effort taken to write a resume will be noticed.  Write a resume that reflects your personality and do not lie or exaggerate. Employers spend an average of 15-20 seconds initially reading a resume. Make sure your resume is concise, accurate, positive, and easy to read. 

Job descriptions are very helpful when writing resumes.  Tailor your resume to the job description.  Include the same key words, skills, and qualities that are used in the job description to make it easier for employers to see that you are qualified.  You may need to "tweak" your resume each time you apply for different jobs. 

When listing your employment history or experience in a chronological resume, list your most recent job first and work your way back.  Use statements that begin with action verbs to describe your duties.  Example:  Provided excellent customer service to a diverse clientele.  If possible, try to quantify your duties or results.  Example:  Filed and maintained medical records for over 2,000 patients.  Increased production by 50% over a two year period.  Employment information may go back 10-15 years on resumes - but varies depending upon individual experience and circumstances.  Make sure the information you include on your resume matches your application information. 

While many jobs are posted on-line, it is also wise to drop off a resume and meet the hiring manager whenever possible.  Let them know you have applied on-line but you want to make sure they received your resume and introduce yourself.  Don't forget to go dressed for an interview - even when just dropping off a resume or picking up an application.  You never know who you may meet that day. 

Don't forget: "A great resume will not get you the job. But a poor resume can keep you from getting the job." Collegegrad.com  

For helpful resume writing tips, techniques and samples, please click on the following links or contact Employability Services at 336-838-6545 for assistance. 

RESOURCES 

TYPES AND SAMPLES 

RESUME WRITING TIPS (pdf) 

REFERENCES (pdf) 

PROFILE/SUMMARY EXAMPLES (pdf) 

RESUME POWER WORDS (pdf) 

RESUME CHECKLIST (pdf) 

COVER LETTERS: Instructions (pdf), Sample (pdf) 

 08/25/14