So, you’re wanting to apply for a job but they’re asking for a resume. Gah!
Firstly, don’t panic. We’ve got you.
Secondly, what even IS a resume and where do you start writing one?
Well, let’s break it down…
What is a resume?
Basically, it’s a page or two that highlights your skills and experience and tells your future employer if you can do the job and what you can bring to the role.
But what if I don’t have experience or skills?
Hush!! Everyone has skills and experience. Maybe you’ve volunteered? Organised school events? Managed a large family? Been involved in a community or church group? There are so many other life skills you can include that you’ve probably never thought of.
Employers need the right deets to contact you
Include your name, email address and contact phone number (double check they’re correct or you’ll miss out). You don’t need to include your address, birthdate or gender, its 2020!
How do I let the employer know what makes me great?
Start your resume with an opening statement that briefly summarises your skills and experience. This is a great insight into who you are and what you bring to the table, sounds daunting – but it’s totally not, it’s one tiny sentence (or paragraph if you’re an overachiever).
Next list out any skills or qualifications you have. Put your highest level of education first followed by any courses and/or qualifications you have. Bonus points if you have any academic achievements – any school or class captaincies, awards you’ve won, or groups you’ve been a part of.
Then note down the skills and experience you have or programs, equipment you’re familiar with. This is the time to have a humble brag! You can include things like customer service skills, using a cash register, eftpos machine or maybe computer programs like Microsoft excel.
If you’re still thinking that you don’t have any skills or experience to put down, scroll back up and re-read our points about life experience and volunteering. YOU’VE GOT THIS!
Think of your referees as your personal cheer squad. They’re the people an employer will call to find out what you’re like as a worker and a person. Pick 2 to 3 people who know you well and can vouch for the skills, experience and personal traits you’ve listed on your resume. They can be a mix of personal or professional contacts you have like an old boss or a teacher.
To protect their privacy, you don’t have to list them on your resume, just write “available upon request”. Just make sure you actually have the names, positions and contact details of your references ready if an employer requests them.
Keep it simple
Remember to use size 11 or 12 font, stick to standard fonts like Calibri, Cambria, Helvetica and Arial. Fancy formats aren’t necessary and can be really hard and confusing to read, let your awesomeness speak for itself! We’d recommend submitting your resume either as a word document or a PDF only.
Don’t go writing that you have great attention to detail and then misspell the sentence (it’s really embarrassing- trust me). Mistakes on your resume might seem harmless but they can cost you a shot at the job. They communicate to an employer that you don’t care enough about the job you’re applying for or that you’re sloppy. No one wants to be sloppy.
The key here is to triple check your resume. If you’re not super confident with proof reading, have someone you trust and who will be honest with their feedback, read over it and make sure it’s error free and easy to understand. They’ll often pick up on things you might have missed.
So, now you know the basic elements of the resume and you’re feeling confident, it’s time to get started!
If you’re still scratching your head and don’t know where to start, that’s ok we can help!
Contact our friendly team today to get started with Campbell Page.
We can support you through every stage of your job search from writing a resume to landing an interview and more.
Images: Makeameme.org, imgflip