Write a great resume

Photo of youth trying to write their resumesThe key to getting an interview offer is having a well written and organized resume. Keep in mind that a potential employer could be looking at a ton of resumes at one time, so it's important to make yours stand out from all of the rest.

Here are some tips and ideas to help you write your first resume.

Content

  • Make sure that what you write on your resume will help you sell yourself: describe your skills and abilities well enough to get a manager's attention, but don't lie.
  • Consider using these headings: Education, Work Experience, Volunteer Experience.
  • Include the volunteer work you've done for the mandatory hours for high school graduation under the 'Volunteer Work' section.
  • Try to use 'power words' or verbs to help describe what you have done in past work experiences (examples - organized a school dance; developed a schedule for a charity drive).
  • Think outside the box if you don't have much work experience. Some things you might include in your resume are: babysitting, yard work or chores for neighbours.

Design

  • Write your resume in a clear font (for example, Arial, New Times Roman) in a large size such as 12 point. This is the most professional way to present your information clearly. If you don't have a computer head to the library or your local employment counselling office and borrow one.
  • Try to keep your resume between 1-2 pages. Most people who read resumes will want a very brief description of your experiences describing everything in great detail could lead to a manager losing interest in your resume.
  • Use clear and accurate headings to describe your experiences.
  • Include the total number of years experience under each description. (for example Babysitter: 2006-2008).
  • Make sure there are page numbers on each page as well as the total number of pages in the resume so that the person reading your resume knows that all pages are there. (Page 1 of 2).
  • Include your name and contact information at the top of the first page of your resume, including mailing address and your e-mail.
  • Pay attention to detail - make sure there are no spelling errors or little mistakes.
  • List your jobs from the most recent to the oldest.

Things you should NOT do with your Resume

  • Don't include your Social Insurance Number on your resume.
  • Never exaggerate your experiences. Honesty is the best policy.
  • Don't use your photograph.
  • Never exaggerate your experiences. Honesty is the best policy.
  • Resumes should be simple in design. Don't include any pictures on your resume.
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