JOB SEARCH TOOLKIT
BUILD AN EFFECTIVE RESUME
Learn about the role of a resume – it's different than you may think!
Highlights from our Resume Guide show you how to make your resume shine.
Common Resume Styles
This style focuses on where you have worked and how long you worked there. It lists your work experience in reverse chronological order, with your most recent position listed first. This style works best for individuals who have consistent work histories with no gaps. It also works well for those who have had increasing responsibility and who are seeking to advance in the same field.
This style focuses on the types of work you have performed rather than where and how long you performed them. It groups your work experience into 3-8 major functional areas, describing responsibilities and achievements within each area. Functional areas can be competencies (for example, leadership, change management, customer service, administrative support), functions or fields (for example, human resources, accounting, social services, budgets, contracts), industries (for example, local government, banking, non-profit, retail), or other groupings that make sense based on your experience.
This style includes elements of both the chronological and functional resume styles. It outlines your responsibilities and achievements within major functional areas first, and then describes your work history in chronological order. This style works best for individuals who have consistent work histories (i.e., no employment gaps) and varied and/or extensive experience (i.e., at least 10 years).
ITEMS TO CONSIDER FOR YOUR RESUME
- Work Experience
- Military Service
- Community and Volunteer Activities
- Certifications & Licenses
- Qualifications Summary
- Educational Details
- Completed Training
- Relevant Skills
- Technical Summary
- Name and Contact Information
- Career Objective
- Presentations and Publications
- Professional Affiliations
- Awards and Honors
. . . and what to leave off
Hobbies & Interests
Pulling It All Together
Feature Important Info
Make sure your most relevant qualifications are prominently displayed and easy to find.
Leave Some White Space
Resist the urge to fill every empty space with information. White space can help your resume look professional and uncluttered.
Call Out Section Headings
Section headings should be visually distinguished from the other parts of your resume. Try bold type or horizontal lines.
Use Proper Line Spacing
Bulleted statements and paragraphs should be single-spaced. Include extra space between sections.