Checklist for Effective Resume Writing

A resume is also known as CV or curriculum vitae. Resume is an influential and credible summary of an individual’s employment qualifications. There is no standard format for a resume. It gives an idea to the reader that how you can be an asset to their organization. A resume should be:

- Neat
- Have factual and relevant information
- Self describing
- Clearly indicate why you are best suited for this job
- Up to date

Resumes should be written not for yourself but for the reader. A good resume must be properly planned, drafted and finally revised. Regard your resume as work in progress and give it a polish every couple of months. You never know when you will be asked for it. Your resume needs to recap and capture the spirit of our competency/what’s best about you.

Resumes are of two types:

  1. Chronological Resume- These resume gives a quick brief up of what the candidate has done in a timeline-beginning with the latest events and moving back in reverse chronology. It stresses upon the degrees, job headings and the dates. Such a resume demonstrates steady development/movement to the current time.
  2. Skills Resume- These resume stresses upon the skills and competencies possessed and used by the candidate, rather than the job and the date in which those skills have been used. It is generally prepared when the candidate frequently changes his job or when his education and experience do not harmonize/match with the position for which the candidate is applying.

Do’s and Dont’s in your Resume

  1. Shouldn’t be too long. It should not exceed two pages generally.
  2. CV should be true and factual.
  3. The first page should contain enough personal details for a recruitment consultant or potential employer to contact you easily.
  4. Choose a format that highlights key skills, key competencies, key achievements or key attributes.
  5. Your employment background should begin with your current job and work backwards.
  6. List all relevant qualifications.
  7. Do not include negative or irrelevant information.
  8. Include details of training or skills development events attended.
  9. Include personal details.
  10. Use a very good quality paper.
  11. Do not use a type size less than 11pt.
  12. Typefaces such as Times New Roman or Arial should be used.
  13. CV should be carefully typed. No spelling errors should be there.
  14. Use bulleted paragraphs. This will save space and make the CV more effective.
  15. Emphasize achievements that are recent, and are most relevant for the position for which the candidate is applying.
  16. Items in resume must be concise and parallel.
  17. While submitting a resume, it must be accompanied with a cover letter to make the readers aware of what is being send, and how can it be beneficial to the readers.
  18. Include references if possible in a resume. If giving references, use three to five. Include atleast one lecturer, and at least one employer.
  19. To stress upon the key points in a resume, put them in appropriate headings, list them vertically, and provide details.

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