Resume Writing 101


Did you know that the average amount of time a recruiter spends reviewing your resume is just 5 to 7 seconds? Therefore, it’s important to put a significant amount of time and thought into creating your resume so it convinces recruiters to keep reading and ultimately to bring you in for an interview. The importance of making your resume content clear, concise, consistent, and relevant to the position you’re applying for cannot be understated.

Resume Format

The most common resume format is the Chronological Resume which lists work experience in reverse chronological order. In other words, your most recent work experience is listed first. While there are other resume formats, recruiters and hiring managers prefer this one because it’s easy to review your entire work history at a glance.

General Tips

  • Resumes for college students and recent graduates must be 1 page, unless they have 10+ years of work experience.
  • Keep the font size between 10 and 12 point. You can adjust margins as needed to make your content fit on the page, but keep them between half an inch and 1 inch.
  • Bold formatting should be used minimally and consistently to draw attention to the most important information.
  • Students in conservative fields such as finance, accounting, and CIS should stick with a traditional style for their resume while students in fields like graphic design, arts, and music can get more creative with their resume design.
  • Each bullet should have 3 parts: an action verb, a specific task that is quantified, and a specific outcome or result.
    • Example: Fielded over 50 client requests each week, resulting in a 15% improvement in client satisfaction.
  • Tailor your resume for each job or internship you apply for. Look at the job description to determine the most important and relevant experience to include. Provide examples of pertinent transferable skills in your bullet points.
  • Always be truthful about your accomplishments and background.
  • Use heavy bond paper in white, ivory, or beige if you are mailing your resume or attending a job/internship fair. (Free paper is located on the 6th Floor Computer Lab in the Library Building).
  • Get your resume reviewed by attending a resume workshop at the Starr Career Development Center or make a one-on-one appointment with a counselor through Starr Search.

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