Why you need a resume and what it should include.
Your resume (CV or curriculum vitae) should be a brief yet informative self-marketing document featuring your skills, experience, and qualifications. You will need a resume for almost any job application, at numerous times in your life. It is often your first touchpoint with a potential employer, the first thing alongside your cover letter. So, you want to get it right!
With so much pressure resting on a single document, it can be hard to know exactly what to put in it, right!
Luckily for you, we’ve done a bit of research to help come up with the best tips and tricks to writing an effective resume that will blow the socks off any potential employer and hopefully help you land an interview with your dream job.
Here’s where it gets tricky… your resume should only be around 2 pages long, and you should have a customised cover letter for every job application.
Your resume should list:
- Your skills
- Your experience
- Your qualifications
Some other things to remember:
- Keep it relevant
Australian graduate employers look at your transferable skills. Do not include long lists of duties for your past employment, rather, list them briefly after your demonstrated skills. The UNE Employability & Careers Office has an excellent resource in the Careers Online Moodle unit in myUNE to assist you in doing this.
- Only include the essential personal info
This is your name, and if you have a preferred name, email address, and phone number, some specific jobs will require more information than this, but it will be specified. It is not necessary to disclose your age, race, religion, or marital status. In fact, under The Anti-Discrimination Act NSW it is illegal for an employer to ask for this information.
- Keep it professional
You want to make the right impression, so that email address you made in primary school… email@example.com may not send the right message to an employer.
Extravagant fonts or formats should be avoided. Not only does this look unprofessional, but the free font you’ve downloaded also may not be compatible with the employer’s software – meaning they may miss important information you’ve included – OR it will default to another font and the design will look off anyway!
- Be aware of any requirements
It may seem trivial but overlooking simple administration requirements may reduce your chances to an employer even looking at your resume. Some applications are required to be in a certain format (i.e Word or PDF), some are required to be addressed in a specific way and some require additional documentation. Adhering to these also sends a message that you are prompt and capable.
- Include a cover letter – Your resume is designed to highlight and demonstrate your skills, experience, and qualifications but your cover letter is an opportunity to take this one step further and tell the employer why you are the best option to fill the role by reiterating your experience but also specifically addressing why your skills and experience meet the job requirements. There is assistance on how to write a cover letter in the Careers Online Moodle unit in myUNE.
- Always double check your spelling and grammar – It may seem really simple but to your employer, this means a range of things from lack of education to lack of care, and if they don’t think you care, you’re not going to get the job!
Now you’ve got your elements sorted it’s time to get cracking and started on your resume. Good luck with the job hunt!
If you still need a little guidance or you’re not sure where to start or if you need some subjective advice you can reach out to the team at UNE Employability and Careers who can help you with how to make this process a little simpler and less daunting.