Journey of a Fresh Graduate: Preparing a Good Resume
Writing a good resume is a skill that should be mastered, as resume is like the first thing ever that reach the future employers, before the interview session. A great resume will make a candidate stand out from all the others who apply for the same job, and trust me; it just takes a little effort to do so. But at the same time, a simple mistake can ruin the whole thing!
So here are “10 Tips on Writing an Outstanding Resume, Maisarah’s Version” 😀
- Clean and Neat Design
Let’s face it. No one likes to read messy stuff. Fonts too small, too big, too fancy, are among the common mistakes that candidates do. Structure your resume from the latest to the oldest, and the highest qualification to the lowest.
- State Your Objective
The objective of the resume is always written on top of all information, right after the basic info (name, address, contact details). A good objective can give the reader the basic idea of the applicant.
For example: “Obtain a position at XYZ Company where I can maximize my management skills, quality assurance, program development, and training experience.”; OR “To obtain a full time position in a multinational which offers a professional working environment and enables me as a fresh graduate to grow while meeting the corporation’s goals.”
- Match Resume To Job Ads
I only have two sets of resume, to be honest. One is for Travel industry, and another one is for general purposes. This is because I have had quite a colorful journey as an intern at a travel agency when I was doing my diploma, and I see it as my strong point.
What is the relevance of having a lot of resumes? Well we should know that different companies have different needs, although they are offering positions that are quite similar. Analyze the job ads carefully. What do they need the most? Outgoing personality? Experience in certain fields? Highlight the points that you HAVE what they NEED. You will outshine the other candidates.
- Use “Nailing” Words
Do not write “I am friendly”.
Write “I am an outgoing person who loves to socialize and meet new people”.
Do not write “I don’t mind doing group work”
Write “I am a good team player”
See the difference? 😀
- Avoid Putting Unnecessary Information
There is no need to include irrelevant experience like being the class monitor in Primary 1. No one wants to know that. A resume is not a short story or autobiography. It doesn’t need you to put your childhood stories or “an experience that I will never forget”.
Know that a resume does not need to include EVERYTHING about a candidate. Personal information like hobbies, interests and favorite food should not be included unless relevant to the field.
- Analyze Demands and Try to Fulfill Them
Take a job ads, and see the “Requirements”.
You must tailor your resumes according to whatever demands that the employer has stated. Keywords like “good team player” and “strong interpersonal skills” (from the above job ads) are the strong base of your resume, in order to make your resume stands out from the millions that the employers have received.
- Highlight Skills and Talents
What are the special skills of yours that not everyone have? What are your talents? Like I mentioned before, you have to make your resume stands out from the millions. But be very detailed when describing, and tailor it with the requirements. For example, “touch typing” should tailor “secretarial work” best!
- Cover Letters and Recommendations
Cover letters are sometimes the physical letter, and also the “cover email” when you send your resume via email. In the cover letter/email, you are to provide some short description about yourself, to give the employers the idea of what sort of candidate you are, e.g. qualifications, character, etc. It is also, in my honest opinion, very important (apart of the resume itself) because it makes the first impression when you apply for a job.
Recommendations are always a bonus. Ask your previous boss/internship supervisor to write about you to “spice up” your resume and to give the potential employers some third party opinion about yourself, as a potential candidate.
In the “Reference” field, I put the name of my lecturer and my latest internship supervisor. Your referees are important too, since most potential employers would give them a call to ask about your performance. Put the names of the people who can describe you well; someone who knows you, and have worked closely with you.
- Proofread, Check, Check, and Check Again
This is the final and most important step. Ask your friend to read your resume before sending it out for applications. Check and make sure that ALL of the details are correct, especially contact numbers. You wouldn’t want them to give you a call and someone else picks up! Very, very bad impression… And make sure that the details of the referees are correct too. I provided the wrong phone number once LOL. I really hope they didn’t call!
All the best! You can find the first article here: Journey of a Fresh Graduate: Plans After Graduation.