How to write an effective resume?

Your resume has to sell you in short order.  It needs to stand out quickly among the hundreds of resumes your potential employers would be reviewing.  An effective resume focuses clearly on a specific job title and addresses the employer’s stated requirements for the position. 

How to Prepare an Effective Resume
STEP ONE: Do a self-assessment, outlining your skills and abilities as well as your work experience and extracurricular activities.


  1. To write an effective resume, you need to state your goal, your skill and your achievements and be specific.
  2. List only the information valuable to your potential employer and the position.  Leave out things not relevant to the position or company.  For example: gender, age, marital status, blood type, etc.
  3. Showcase your skills, both personal and professional, that allow you to provide exemplary work in your chosen field or position.  What does the job demand? How do your skills, interests, talents and experiences meet these demands? What are the benefits of hiring you?  What makes you stand out from the other candidates?
  4. You may have a few seconds to get critical points across to your potential employer before it gets tossed to the trash bin.  State your most important information up front in your resume.  Understand what information/requirement is most important to your potential employer and list them early in your resume.  For example: If the position requires someone with effective project management skill, list your project management skill at the front. 

STEP TWO: Resume Essentials/Contents
A. Contact Information
1. Name, address, telephone, e-mail address, web site address
All your contact information should go at the top of your resume. 

B. Objective or Summary
An objective tells potential employers the sort of work you're hoping to do. Be specific about the job you want. For example: To obtain an entry-level position within a financial institution requiring strong analytical and organizational skills. Tailor your objective to each employer you target/every job you seek.

C. Education
New graduates without a lot of work experience should list their educational information first.  Experienced workers should list it after the work experience section, and only list the highest education obtained.

D. Work Experience
Briefly give the employer an overview of work that has taught you skills. Use action words to describe your job duties. Include your work experience in reverse chronological order and include the following information: Title of position, Name of organization, Location of work (town, state), Dates of employment.

Describe your work responsibilities with emphasis on specific skills and achievements.

E. Personal information
You can add:  Key or special skills or competencies, Leadership experience in volunteer organizations, Participation in sports, Language proficiency, etc.

F. References
Ask people if they are willing to serve as references before you give their names to a potential employer.

Do not include your reference information on your resume.
You may note at the bottom of your resume: "References furnished upon request."


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