Before Writing Your First Résumé

Top 5 Rules for Writing an Effective Resume

June 10, 2019 · 4 mins read

Finding a job is not an easy task at all, especially if you want to find not just any kind of job but work in a serious company, with an attractive salary and good working conditions. Yes, yes! Such employers also exist, but in order to find your dream job, you will need to put in some effort :) It is about your résumé. So what is a résumé?

Résumé vs CV - What are the differences?

A résumé and CV are both documents that are used by job seekers to summarize their skills, accomplishments, and professional history when applying for a job. In many countries like Australia, South Africa, India, and most of Eastern Europe, the terms résumé and CV are used interchangeably.

At the same time, in the United States, Canada, and most of Western Europe, there are a few differences between the two types of application documents.

A résumé (from French - résumé, which means “abstract” or “summary”) is a short-form document that provides a brief overview of your previous positions, skills, and education. Typically, a good résumé is one to two pages long and should be targeted at a specific position.

A CV (Curriculum Vitae, which means “course of life” in Latin), on the other hand, is more detailed and can stretch well beyond two pages. Usually, a CV has a full chronological order listing the whole course of your career and contains details about your education, professional career, publications, awards, honors, and other achievements.

So, let’s sum up:

The differences between CV and résumé are the length, the purpose, and the layout of these documents. CV:long, static, covers your entire career, used for academic purposes. Résumé short, no particular format rule, highly customizable, used to apply for jobs.

Why is a good résumé important?

So, we have already figured out what a résumé is and the difference between résumé and CV. Now, let's talk about why it is so important to pay attention to the proper preparation of your résumé while applying for a job.

Firstly, you need to clearly understand that the purpose of the résumé is to make your candidacy stand out from the competition. Your résumé should make a favorable impression on the employer and encourage inviting you for an interview. No matter how great your experience and qualifications are, if your résumé is poorly prepared, you may have problems getting the job you deserve.

undefinedYour résumé should make your candidacy stand out to employers.

Before writing your first résumé, you should always remember that there may be many other qualified candidates who also apply for this position. So, you have to ensure you craft a powerful résumé that stands out to employers.

Consider your résumé as a personal marketing document that can show potential employers why they should invite you to an interview for a particular position.

Top 5 rules for writing a strong résumé

1. Be ready to adapt your résumé quickly. Employers may be different, and their requirements are different. You should be able to analyze a job opening and adapt your résumé to every position you apply for. Ideally, you should change the résumé from one job application to another and tailor it to the needs of the specific job post. The more your résumé meets the requirements of a particular position, the more likely you are to be seen among dozens or even hundreds of other candidates!

2. Brevity is the soul of wit. A good résumé is usually limited to one or two pages. This is quite enough to demonstrate your skills, achievements, and experience from the best sides. Do not water down your résumé with irrelevant or secondary information--only concise and accurate details!

3. Add your personal touch as the highlight to your résumé. Once again, your résumé is the first impression you make on a potential employer. It needs to be eye-catching and attract attention, but don’t overdo it. If you are not strong in design, you can use ready-to-use résumé templates for a quick effect. Always pay attention to details, such as structure, colors, and fonts, and you will not have a chance to go unnoticed!

4. Avoid spelling mistakes. Obviously, your résumé should not contain spelling and grammatical errors. Otherwise, it will make a very negative impression on employers and can eliminate any efforts to find a job. The best way to avoid typos and mistakes in your résumé is to have someone else read over it to check for these sorts of errors. You can also use spell-check online services, but keep in mind that they cannot fully guarantee the absence of errors. In general, just pay attention to details, try printing your résumé out to review, or use a spell-checking tool, and you will certainly be able to avoid mistakes in your résumé.

5. Have you already prepared the perfect résumé and are ready to click the “Submit” button? Wait a minute. Make sure you’ve provided the correct contact information. It may seem silly, but lots of job applicants forget to include their contact details on a résumé or CV. Don’t make this small yet costly mistake! Put your full name, along with your phone number and email address. As for your email address, it needs to create a professional impression, so don’t use email names that may sound childish. Try to keep it clear and simple. Your first name together with your last name is a good way to go.

Your résumé is your professional profile

Even if you are not actively looking for a new job, but only thinking about further career achievements, make sure that you always have an up-to-date résumé at hand. This will not only allow you to feel more confident at work but also let you quickly respond to new opportunities in your career.

And finally, we wish you to find a job that makes you happy. Stay tuned! Your Sweet CV team.