5 Tips on Résumé Writing
By Marquis Codjia
For a job applicant, résumé writing can be a powerful tool to obtain the dream job. For active workers, it serves as a way to build and maintain their professional brand name – in other words, it epitomizes how they portray and where they position themselves in the job market.
Due to this significance, extensive care should be exercised in drafting a résumé. Job seekers who understand the importance of a well-written résumé – but are unable to pen one – usually resort to professional résumé writers or occupational coaches. Although these specialists can provide invaluable advice in the job search process and produce a high-quality work, job applicants can also author excellent résumé if they strictly follow some simple rules.
Use proper grammar
A résumé provides an account of the relevant work experience and education. It introduces the job seeker to a potential employer; it is thus critical that the first impression – the résumé – be a good one. Employers rarely offer interviews to applicants with error-filled résumés, unless the job is in a field where proper English and good spelling are priorities. (Those jobs are rare). Applicants should write, proofread and edit their résumés until they’re satisfied with the quality. It is advised to have a second person – and even a third – proofread the résumé before sending it out to potential employers. Avoid common mistakes (e.g.: it’s vs. its, you’re vs. your, two vs. too vs. to, they’re vs. their); they reflect poorly on your work and your personality.
Write in a concise, professional manner
The résumé is a professional document that describes work accomplishments, among many things. As such, it should be written in a professional manner. It should also be concise, dealing directly with the relevant aspects of one’s career or academic life. Aspects of one’s private life that do not relate directly to – or are not pertinent to – the job sought should be avoided.
Integrity is the cornerstone of everyday’s life, whether in politics, business, or society. Voters rarely elect individuals perceived as lacking honesty; companies seldom partner with unreliable institutions or individuals. Consequently, it is absolutely important that the résumé be truthful in all its aspects because this affects one’s reputation. Warren Buffet once said: ‘It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it ‘.
Include only your major, relevant achievements
Sometimes it is tempting to include an exhaustive list of accomplishments on the résumé to impress a potential employer. However, this can be counter-productive because employers often have many résumés to sift through and won’t spend too much time on a lengthy, verbose résumé. It is more effective to include only the major achievements that relate to the position sought.
Use your résumé as a marketing tool
The résumé is your ultimate tool to manage your brand name, your professional positioning. At each stage in a career, the résumé can serve to differentiate top-caliber candidates from the rest of the pack. To stay in the top-caliber, it is critical to use all the tips already mentioned, but also maintain an extensive professional network where the résumé can be periodically exposed.