The Anatomy of a Resume(Part 2)

Ideas image from Pixabay

A quick recap from last week, remember to have confidence while preparing your resume. Up to this point, you should have chosen that one job you want. Now we get into the nitty gritty!

Skip to some EXTRA special tips to beef up that resume!

What you need to include in your resume remains the same:

  • Contact information
  • Objective/summary
  • Experience
  • Education
  • References

Contact Information

This is where your name, email, phone number and website will go. How you style this is up to you, we will go over style and amazing apps to create your resumes in another post. For now common sense and the experts agree: do not use unprofessional emails(like sugarqueen(at), or lickItNicely100), refrain from those please. Just create a free account using your name. Mine would be ericajean(at)something(dot)com. Get it?

Career Objective/Summary

This is the really important part. In fact Philip C. Kolin, author of Professional Writing at Work states:

Create an objective that precisely dovetails with the prospective employer’s requirements.”(p.143)

What does that even mean?

This means in step one of preparing your resume, the job ad listed some things required.

Your objective should match that(this is why you will make more than one resume pertaining to what industry you are looking to get hired. One resume can not be used for several different industries).

Kolin says you should ask your self four questions to help you build your objective: 1) What kind of job do I want? 2) What kind of job am I qualified for? 3) What capabilities do I possess(look at your confident skills list)? 4) What kind of skills do I want to learn?

Here is an example from one of my resumes:

Experienced educator using my proven skills in instruction and communication to help increase literacy in students of any age.”

What’s new for this section, is that now it is pretty cool to come up with a brand descriptor of yourself. Something like: Self Starter with a Decade of Customer Service Skills.

This would typically appear right before your career objective. Again, we’ll talk about designing and styling your resume later.

Education or Experience?

Which should go first?

Generally if you have more experience, please list that first on the resume.

If you are a recent graduate, list your education first and for experience make sure to list any pertinent volunteering you’ve done or internships and sometimes I have even listed courses I have taken that matches the job I am going for.

Example: Completed 25 hours in major courses in finance, accounting, economics….


Should this even be included?

It is up to you.

Simply stating “Available upon request”-without the quotation marks, should be fine. I keep a separate file of current references available as a PDF just in case the job requests it.

Extra Tips

Now, I can’t leave you hanging. There is more you should understand about the anatomy of a resume.

Words and style DO matter.

First, when you are writing your resume, make sure you use action verbs throughout it.

Words such as “calculated, accomplished, taught, weighed, won, worked” and more are examples.

These words are “action terms”- things you have done. Hiring managers love to see what you have done. My favorite is “spearheaded” the word reminds me of a shark in a suit…okay, you can laugh(138)

Second, which style resume would work for you? Functional or chronological?

This is important to think of before we start plugging information into a resume app.

Chronological is what it implies. It chronicles your job and education experience, “especially if you show a continuity toward progress in your career”(147). Here is an example of a chronological resume.

Now, if you are like me and have changed jobs frequently and have been a nontraditional student, a functional resume would suffice. A functional resume focuses on abilities gathered from education, coursework, extracurricular activities and so on. Here is an example of a functional resume.

Whew! Glad we are done with this part.

Your Turn!

Now get out a sheet of paper and jot down information for each of those sections. Think of word choice and the terms the job ad uses. This is important. I will tell you how important in the last post. For now, get to working, look at the examples provided.

Learn from the examples if anything else.

I’ll see you in the next post 😉