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Guide to Resumes

Guide to Resume Writing

Components of a Resume

When it comes time to apply for that perfect job you will need a resume to showcase your experience and skills. Problem is, maybe you have never written a resume before and you need to know what exactly goes into one. What are the main components of a resume?

Contact Information

At the very top of your resume, at the header section, you will need to place your contact information. This will include your name, address, phone number and email address.


Although this part is optional, you might want to use it to look more professional to potential employers. In the objective section you will write about what you want in a job, your preferences for the job you are applying to. It also serves as the main point that potential employers will be reviewing to analyze what you are all about.


In this section you will talk about your education such as high school and college. You will have to write down where and when you graduated and it also helps if you add your major and minor as well as any honors you may have. You will also write down what type of degree you have received.

Employment History or Experience

This section will show what types of jobs you have had in the past. This will show your experience and prove you are capable for the job you are applying to. Even if you have a long employment history and experience, try to describe it as short as possible.


If you have any additional skills you will talk about them in this section. This is the place where you place anything important that does not fit anywhere else.


Have you received any rewards or honors? If so, you need to talk about them briefly in this section. This means both high school and college awards and honors.


Some potential employers will ask for at least three references but you do not have to put this in your resume. Instead state, “References Available Upon Request.” Just be ready and have three people you can use as references in case they want them during the interview process. Do not use friends or family. Instead use co-workers or past employers who give you permission to use them. If you do place any references here, make sure you do not use their contact information on your resume. Instead, send their information on a separate sheet or provide them during the interview process.

Tips on Creating an Objective

When you are applying for the perfect job, you might want to include an Objective in your resume. Although it is only optional to use an Objective in a resume, it might determine whether your resume gets you hired or you get passed over. Employers and recruiters are very busy people and don’t have the extra time to go through your whole resume without knowing what your career goals are. This is where an Objective comes in and if you don’t include one, yours might get tossed in the garbage.

Benefiting the Employer

Write down how your skills and experience would benefit the employer, not the other way around. Make sure to note what you can do for them, not what they can do for you. Do not add what you want from this job because that can look bad.

Be Specific

Be specific about your career objectives. Do not be vague here. The employer wants to see what your career goals are and what you can do.

Stay on Target

Make sure to stay on target and do not stray away from what your goals are. Employers and recruiters are busy and go through thousands of applications to hire one person. Make it easier for them to understand what you will give them and what your goals are.

Do You Need an Objective?

Although it is important to provide your career goals, you do not have to have an objective section just for this. You can also put this part of your resume in your qualifications summary.

When Do You Need an Objective?

Not everyone will need an objective section. The ones who do need this section are the people changing careers and those just starting out with an entry level position. However, if you are going for a specific job, you should add one to make it stand out to potential employers. Adding an objective will show the potential employer that you took the time to add this extra section.

Remember, the objective will be at the top of your resume and the first thing potential employers or job recruiters will look at. Try to add one even if you do not think you need one just to show you are serious about the job. You never know, if you take the time to actually add this section, you might get hired on the spot for that perfect job you have always wanted. It could be your ticket to your dream job.

Tips on Listing Skills in a Resume

Listing your skills on your resume can mean the difference between getting an interview or your resume getting tossed to the side or even thrown away. If you want to ensure your resume does not get tossed to the side or thrown away you need to know how to list skills in a resume. If you are using a generic resume template, you might decide not to add certain sections. However, listing your skills is just as important as listing your education and employment history sections.

Listing Skills with an Objective

Although many people do not add an objective, it is an important part of any resume. Listing your skills with your objective can show what your career goals are and what you plan to achieve. If you are listing skills on an entry level resume, this can show what you plan to achieve in five years or more.

Listing Skills with Employment History

When listing your skills with your employment history, you will be listing them in business terms. Doing so will immediately show what your value will be to the employer. If you can be specific in what you did with each career you had, for example, your exact responsibilities then this shows you have what it takes to get the job done right.

Listing Skills with Employment Gaps

If you had some employment gaps, you will need to list your skills by providing information as to what you did during those gaps. For example, did you complete a course or attend school? If so, it is important to add this information. It is important because it shows you were trying to improve or were working to get a new job. It also shows determination and drive that you were trying to further your career and add to your resume.

Keeping these tips in mind when filling out your skills section of your resume will show you are capable of doing the job because of your skills. It will increase your chances of getting an interview or getting hired right away. It also teaches you that you will need an individual resume for each job you apply to. Having a separate resume for each job you apply to will show you tailored that resume just for that job. Sending out the same resume for different jobs will not be as effective. When spending a few extra minutes of your time creating a new resume for different jobs will mean a better income for you and your family.

Points of a Writers Resume

As a freelance writer, you will need a resume tailored for a writer. Since you are a writer, it should not be too hard to write your own resume. If you are good at it or get good at it, you can include this type of service to your clients to expand your writing business and make more money. First, you need to know how to write a writer’s resume. Here are 5 points of a writer’s resume.

Writing Experience

You have to have experience to get anywhere as a writer. Of course, you have to start out low on the freelance writing ladder and climb your way to the top and it does take work but you will get there with time. The main point of any writer’s resume is the experience you have. When writing your writer’s resume, make sure to list all of the experience you have. It will look good to potential clients.

Educational Writing Projects

Did you do any writing in high school or college? Maybe you used to write for your school newspaper. If this is the case with you then make sure to include this in your resume. It will look great on your writer’s resume to potential clients and employers.

Copy Writer and Editor Projects

Copy writing and editing is a part of freelance writing but they are also different. If you have had experience or are currently working as one or both of these, you can add them to your resume to make it stand out from other applicants.

On-Line Clips

Have you been published online? If so, you should add links to your clips or profiles to showcase what you can do and where you have been published. This will look really good to potential clients and employers as well because it says you are good enough to be published online.


You will also want to write down your education. This includes high school and college. Write down when and where you graduated and add any skills and experience you might have received from this education. When the potential client or employer sees you are educated, they will want to hire you even more because they will see the potential you can bring them with additional projects they might have in the works.

As long as you have these 5 points of a writer’s resume on your freelance writing resume, you will stand out from the crowd of applicants.

Points of an Academic Resume

An academic resume is basically for college scholarships and university jobs. They are made for a specific goal. Just like with a professional resume, an academic resume should convey personality and your focus behind it to provide accurate details of your professional and educations experiences. There are 5 points of an Academic resume.


Whether you are writing your academic resume for a college scholarship or for employment in a university, your academic resume should provide as much detail as possible about your education. This should include the names of schools you attended as well as when you graduated. You should also list here any test scores, academic standing and your GPA.


In this section you will want to talk about your employment history. This will also showcase your experience you have had. You will need to list where you have worked as well as what types of experiences you have gotten from this employment. Although many students believe that this part of the resume is not important, it really is. This is because it will show that students are capable and well rounded individuals.


You should also list previous and current activities on your resume. This means listing any organizations, religious groups, extracurricular activities and where you have volunteered. List them in chronological order. Also make sure to include information like when you have done these activities and awards earned while participating in them.

Awards and Honors

Have you received any awards or honors while in school or at your current or past careers? If so, make sure to place them in your academic resume as well. This will make you stand out from the many other applicants and make the resume reviewer want to read your resume. They will be highly impressed if you add this part to it.

You should also list references if you can. These include personal references such as teachers, professors, past and current employers and even club advisors. Adding these references will provide people vouching for you and making you look even better for the scholarship or university career you are seeking. Make sure you have the permission from the references you use before you use them because they might be contacted.

Make sure to keep the academic resume short and to the point, yet specific enough. Do not add too much information and do not get too wordy. Label each section so it is easy to read through. Make it stand out from the rest of the applicants.

Points to Avoid in a Resume

When you are writing any type of resume, you want it to be professional. You will want to make sure you add everything there is to add including the objective, experience, employment history, contact information and maybe even references. Make it stand out from everyone else applying for that perfect job you are applying for. Make it so it won’t be thrown away right away. There are 4 points to make sure you avoid in a resume.

Do Not Ramble

Don’t ramble on and on. Be specific and stick to the point. If it is too long they will not want to read it and it will get thrown away as soon as they see how long it is. Two pages is too long. Make it one page, full length. Include everything you need to include but make it to the point. Don’t add anything that is not relevant to the job you are applying for.

Avoid Irrelevance

Again, make it to the point and stay on topic. Make sure to add anything relevant to the job and avoid adding anything that doesn’t have anything to do with the job you are applying for. Don’t provide details of your favorite jobs. Just write down your responsibilities with them and you will do fine.

Do Not Leave out the Objective

Although some people do leave this out, you should add it to make yours stand out from the rather large crowd of applicants. Write down a good objective as to what you can bring to the job but don’t add what the job can do for you.

Do Not be Vague

Make sure to list your experiences and skills. Don’t be vague about them. List what you have learned from past careers. Just do not over-do it or it will be tossed to the side. Remember to be specific and to the point.

Avoiding these 4 mistakes in resume writing will get you far. Adding what you should and leave out what you should will go a long way with getting that perfect job you have always wanted. If you do not think you will do a good enough job writing a perfect resume highlighting your experiences, hire someone to do it for you. This could mean the difference between getting the job and getting ignored. Do not forget to add the basics and make sure you have your contact information. After all, the potential employer cannot contact you without your information.


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