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RESUME WRITING TIPS

We all do great things, but still we falter at the basics. I have seen many people who send a resume having the wrong mail ID and/or wrong contact phone number, so, never receive any call letter from the companies and wonder what might have gone wrong in their job search. I have seen people who lost great career opportunities just because they have neglected the most important part of their Job Search i.e, Resume. Thatís what made me to write this small article that may help you avoid simple mistakes that can cost you much beyond your expectation. Following are the basic things you must follow while preparing resumes, if you want to make a successful job search. Understand that your Resume gives the recruiter the first impression on you and it represents you even during your absence. I think itís worth to spend some time on your resume that fetches you a job for your life.  --> Best Wishes for your Job Search & Life -- ChetanaS

IMPORTANT: IF YOU WANT TO TAKE PRINTOUT OR SEND TO YOUR FRIENDS, CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THESE RESUME WRITING TIPS AS A PDF FILE.

IMPORTANT: IF YOU ARE COMPLETELY NOT SURE OF HOW TO MAKE YOUR RESUME, CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD A SAMPLE RESUME & COVERING LETTER FOR FRESHERS.

OUTSIDE RESUME ::

Resume Format
  • Always have a .doc (Microsoft Word) format and .txt format of your resume with you. When you are filling your resume in websites, you need the text format and when you are sending resume through mail, itís better to send the .doc format.
  • Few companies may ask specifically for .rtf format. In such case, you donít have an option anyway.

Resume Size

  • Try to see to it that the .doc resume file size is less than 100 KB.

Resume File Name

  • Donít give some junk names as file name for the resume. If you keep use junk names, there is every possibility that your mail will travel to bulk/trash folder of recruiter. Your resumeís file name should ideally denote your name, experience, technology, years of experience and company name. Keep some valid name for your resume.
    Example: Resume_Chetana_J2EE_3 Years_INFOSYS.doc
    Example: Resume_Chetana_FRESHER_B Tech_Computers.doc

Exclusive Mail IDs

  • Use only one (or maximum of 2) mail Ids exclusively for the purpose of recruitments. Do NOT use those mail Ids for any other purpose (Especially you should not use it for subscribing to any GROUP mails or FORWARD mails).

Standard Mail Service Providers

  • You must be careful about the service providers in which you open a mail account. Donít use the mail Ids/accounts from non-standard service providers. If they disconnect services suddenly, your mail ID fails and you need to resend resumes with new mail Id to all the companies you have already applied. So, always try to create mail Ids with standard service providers like Yahoo, Rediff, Google etc.
  • Choose both mail Ids from different mail service providers. In case, if one service provider experiences technical problems, you can use the other service provider.

Mail Space

  • Always see to it that at least 50 % of your mailbox size is free. Delete unnecessary mails periodically.

Send from same mail ID

  • While sending the resume, preferably send it from the mail ID you have mentioned in your resume.

Always keep a copy

  • While sending the resume, always keep a CC/BCC to your mail ID (or at least keep your sent items ON) so that you will know whether the resume is attached properly and/or whether itís traveling to bulk mail folder.

Subject Line

  • If the company mentions that a specific ĎJob Codeí has to be written in Subject Line, write that. If nothing specific, then give a proper subject line for your mail.
    Example: Resume - J2EE - 3 Years Experience Ė INFOSYS Ė Bangalore

Covering Letter

  • Always try to include a "short" covering letter just containing your experience, current location, contact details (address & phone number) current company name, technology you are working in. Donít write too long covering letters. No HR will spend time on reading your long letters.

Short is Sweet

  • Donít make the resume too long. Keep it short & sweet. It should be less than 3 pages (and up to a maximum of 4). The HR will hardly have 1 minute to glance at your resume. He wonít have the time to read story-like resume. So, be precise, clear and straight to the point.
  • Better use bullets for mentioning important points.

Check BULK mail folder

  • Check the BULK mail folder before blindly emptying it. I have seen people who lost call letters because of it.

INSIDE RESUME :: www.ChetanaS.com

Header & Footer !

  • Always have a header & footer in your resume.
  • Header can contain a simple heading of your resume.
  • Footer should preferably contain the page number.

First Page is the best page to convey all about you !

Typically the HR expects all the important details in the first page. He receives hundreds of resumes and hardly gets 1 minute to look at your resume and so he wonít bother to search your resume for the required details, if the details are not found in his first glance at your resume.

The first page of resume must contain the following things:

  • Personal Details : Full Name, Date of Birth, Passport Number.
  • Current Contact Details : Full Contact Address, Contact Phone Numbers, Mail ID & Alternate Mail ID.
  • Work Experience Summary : All the companies you have worked so far, Company Address, Website, Dates of Duration in each Company. Donít assume that everyone knows about your company. (You can highlight if your current company has any good quality levels like CMM/CMMI)
  • Job Responsibilities : Your job profile in your past companies. For example, you should highlight that you are working as ĎModule Leader leading a team of 6 peopleí in your current company.
  • Skill Set Summary : Highlight all the technologies you know well. Donít include any technologies you have not worked on.
  • Certifications : Include any relevant certifications you have. That gives you an edge over others.
  • Education Details Summary : Your Post Graduation, Graduation, Intermediate, 10 th details, Aggregate Percentage, Year of Pass out (Most important).

Contact Details at the top, not at bottom !

  • Contact Details should be at the top of resume, not at the bottom.
  • Never include the contact details in Header or Footer. They wonít be visible properly.

Always provide an alternate mail ID !

  • Always provide an ĎAlternate Mail Idí also (in case your original mail Id fails, it will be useful).
  • Do NOT give more than 2 mail Ids in resume. The recruiters as well as you will get confused which mail Id to send/receive call letters.

No one can save you if your Mail ID fails !

  • Check the mail Ids you provided in CV by sending a trial mail. (I have seen people giving Yahoo.com instead of Yahoo.co.in. If the mail Id fails when HR sends you call letter, no one can save you in this world. No HR will resend the call letter if your mail ID fails.)

Never use official mail ID ! (for Experienced people)

  • NEVER use OFFICIAL MAIL ID or OFFICIAL PHONE NUMBER in the resume. You must always provide the Personal mail Id & Personal Phone/Mobile Number. You can give the OFFICIAL MAIL ID for reference at the end the resume.

Spell Check !

  • Always perform a spell check and grammar check on the resume. You donít deserve a job if you canít write your resume without mistakes.
  • There is nothing wrong in getting your resume reviewed by someone else. They might catch the mistakes that your eyes can never detect.

Educational details are important !

  • People (especially experienced people) think that they donít need to give the educational details. But they are important. If not all details, at least give the highest qualification, college/university name and aggregate percentage. (Some HR people simply delete the resumes without educational details.)

Reverse Chronological order !

  • Your latest job profile is more important than your first one. So, always write the details in reverse chronological order (start with the latest) especially when you are listing previous company details or educational qualification details.

Avoid Irrelevant Details !

  • Write straight to the point and only the details relevant to the job. (You donít need to include your family tree or how many children you have or what your wife does.)
  • Do not write stereotype sentences like ĎI am sincere, intelligent, hardworkingí etc. Thatís childish. Who in this world is not hardworking by the way?

Use simple Language !

  • Use simple English. You donít need to write complex jargon in the resume.

Write the Crux of Projects !
Donít write all about your projects. That will make the resume very lengthy. Write only the crux of the information. Following details would be enough.

  • Project Name, Team Size, Client Name, Duration of Project.
  • Short description of project (Not more than 5 to 6 lines).
  • Your role in project (This is very important).
  • Technologies used in project.

You should convey where you want to work !
Always include the following clearly in resume:

  • ĎCurrent Locationí (mandatory). I have seen resumes in which there is no clue of where they are working currently. How can they expect a call letter ?
  • ĎDesired Locationí (if you have a preference). Anyway freshers typically will not have a choice for the desired location. They better not to include it.

Experience !

  • Project Training done in your final academic year does not come under professional work experience. You can mention it, but not under ĎWork Experienceí section.
  • Always highlight your onsite (customer interaction experience) in your resume. That gives you an edge over others.

Salary Details

  • Better not to include current & expected compensation details in resume. You can convey them when you are asked to provide them during interview.

You are not submitting the application for matrimonial !

  • Do not include any photos in the resume unless specifically asked by the company.

You are not writing a love letter !

  • Avoid unwanted graphics: Either in resume or the covering letter, avoid jazzy graphic images, emoticons or multiple colors.
  • Avoid jazzy fonts: Preferably use some professional font (Arial or Times or Verdana) and use the same across. Use same font size across the resume (except for headings). Donít write each line in a different font and size.
  • However, you can use some decent shades (preferably gray color), to highlight important information. That makes the resume to look good when a printout is taken.

Take a print and see !

  • Take a printout of your resume and see. If you do not like it in the first look, the same will be with recruiters. (I know HR people who called candidates based on attractive resume.) So, revise it again.

DISCLAIMER: Please note that the copyright of this information is owned by ChetanaS ( www.ChetanaS.com  ). However, you can freely distribute/display this file at your will as long as you donít alter parts or full of this information and/or copy the contents of this file. The file can be distributed AS IT IS only. The contents of this file should not be copied/reproduced in any other form without the written permission from the authors. Any modifications to the file/content will be considered copyright violation and you may be subjected to legal action. If you need any clarifications regarding the same, you can mail me at: Chetana@ChetanaS.com 

 
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