How to Write an Effective Resume

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1 Purpose of a Resume How to Write an Effective Resume The purpose of a resume is to market yourself to an employer. A resume is a concise document that highlights your relevant education, experience, accomplishments, and skills. Formatting Your Resume There is no right or wrong resume format. However, there are some tips you want to remember to make your resume memorable (in a good way!) to employers. Keep your resume to one to two page employers typically look at your resume for seconds the first time. Make it consistent and easy to skim. Use bold, italics, bullets, and spacing consistently throughout your resume. Avoid templates. Templates are easy to spot and difficult to use. Create a resume that you will be able to adapt easily as you make changes and updates. The top third of your resume is your sales section. You should market your most relevant experiences here. Your resume should have the most important information toward the top. Order your categories accordingly. Within each category, keep your experience in reverse chronological order (most recent first). This format is easiest for employers to read. Every field is different, so it is important to do some research and have your resume reviewed by professionals within your field to make sure you are following the standard acceptable format. Content of a Resume HEADING Your resume begins with your contact information. Your contact information includes: your name (largest font on resume), address, phone number, and . Look at various samples to see how you can display this information. TARGET STATEMENT OR OBJECTIVE Entry level positions A customized target statement or objective can be an effective way to grab the reader s attention. A statement should: Be one line, two at max Tell the recipient what type of position and/or industry you are seeking Share what skills or experience you offer an employer, not what you are looking to gain PROFESSIONAL SUMMARY Experienced professionals A concise, well-written statement or series of bullet points that may include: Top 3-5 professional accomplishments Top 3-5 skills with brief description of how the skills are developed Specialized skills, knowledge or abilities (such as language proficiency, training/certifications, technical skills) Your education should highlight your post-high school education. Your education section should include: Name of educational institution and city and state where the school is located Date of graduation Degree received and major field of study GPA (optional) Related coursework (optional) Education honors (optional)

2 EXPERIENCE Your experience section and how you format it is highly customized to you. Experience includes work, volunteer, internship, and other related experiences. Headings can include Experience, Related Experience, Additional Experience, Volunteer Experience, Professional Experience, etc. You want to select the headings that will move your most relevant experiences toward the top of your resume. Each experience should include: Name of organization and city and state where the organization was located Span of dates you participated Your title Description of your skills and accomplishments (written in bulleted format) Describing Your Experience Your experience description should paint a picture of what it would be like to have you as an employee. Descriptions that simply state what you did at a previous job are weak. To write effective descriptions: 1. Look at the job description of the job you want. Highlight all key words and skills. 2. Think about each of your past positions. How did you develop the skills desired? 3. Create statements describing your skills and accomplishments. Always start with an action word. 4. Qualify your experience by describing it using enough detail that an outsider understands what you did. 5. Whenever possible, quantify (use numbers) your experience. Additional Resume Categories Some resumes include additional sections, such as: Skills, Honors and Awards, Professional Development, Volunteer Work, Certifications and Presentations. If these apply to you, you may include them. Just be sure to keep your format consistent from category to category. Resume Do s and Don ts Do: DON T: Use a clean format that is easy to read/scan Include irrelevant personal information Make it relevant to the employer Misspell or have grammatical errors Put the most important information first Be Inconsistent (with font style or size) Stress results, skills, and accomplishments Use personal pronouns (I, me, my) Use correct tense Use abbreviations, slang or jargon Begin sentences with action verbs List References Available Upon Request

3 New Grad Home East Employed Street Indianapolis, IN Assistant Merchandiser Seeking a position as an Assistant Merchandiser at Target where experience in product strategy development and consumer research is valued Education Indiana University, Bloomington, IN May 2013 Bachelor of Arts, Fashion Design GPA 3.8/4.0 Capstone Project: Created a marketing plan for a new line of handbags and accessories for JC Penney Identified target audience and specific methods for reaching the audience Presented marketing plan in mock board meeting, successfully fielding questions regarding the plan Received an A for exceptional work Leadership Experience Retail Studies Organization, Indiana University August 2009-May 2013 Vice President of Membership August 2012-May 2013 Marketed benefits of participation in the Retail Studies Organization to new majors at orientation, in classes, and during campus organization events Created a dynamic marketing piece that outlined the benefits of involvement in the organization Increased membership by 5% from previous year by marketing the club to minors as well as majors Hollister, Bloomington, IN August 2011-May 2013 Sales Associate Managed a 15 hour/week part-time job while maintaining a full-time course load Ensured store was visually appealing and strategically marketed products throughout the store Provided exceptional customer service, hitting weekly sales goals of $1000 on a consistent basis Collaborated with team members to create a store attitude consistent with the Hollister brand Kohls, Milwaukee, WI Summer 2012 Merchandising Intern Researched competitors prices on items with lower sales success over the last sales quarter Analyzed customer survey and made recommendations on products to be marketed as Kohls exclusives Presented findings of Kohls exclusives research to 15 full-time merchandising staff members Communicated with three major vendors on quote sheets and sample requests

4 Experienced Grad 23 West William Street Chicago, IL (857) SUMMARY Ten years of management experience within the retail sector Demonstrate leadership ability, receiving two promotions within two years Create effective teams through strong communication and measurable performance metrics Recipient of Excellence in Leadership award, given to the top manager from each region as nominated by peers EXPERIENCE My Style, Inc., Chicago, IL May 2008-Present Regional Manager August 2010-Present Oversee 15 retail stores in territory. Travel to each location once a month to assess quality, discuss goals, and provide feedback. Managed rollout of new employee incentive program, designed to award employees for high-quality customer service and loyalty to the company. Increase efficiency of customer experience in receiving assistance by 10% across region. Lead 15 store managers in receiving Gold Star ratings on all performance metrics for the two years in a row. Store Manager May 2009-August 2010 Offered comprehensive oversight of store, including management of 50 staff and sales of $500,000 annually. Promoted to store manager after only six months in an assistant manager position. Implemented pilot program of company s new look, which included promotion, press, and community events. Led eight assistant managers through professional development series aimed at increasing professional image of staff and creating career ladder opportunities for employees. Assistant Manager January 2008-May 2009 Led team of 10 sales associates in shoe & accessory department. Provided extensive individual feedback to maximize the performance of each individual and the team. Increased department revenue from previous year by 3%. Designed and implemented incentive program to motivate team toward weekly and seasonal goals. Presented incentive program to store managers across region at annual awards event, which was then implemented by seven additional stores. Macy s, Chicago, IL May 2007-May 2008 Retail Sales Representative Provided exceptional customer service in busy shoe department. Assisted up to 20 customers per hour. Trained new sales representatives on Macy s customer service expectations. Indiana University, Bloomington, IN May 2007 Bachelor of Science, Telecommunications 3.7/4.0, Hutton Honors College

5 Ima Functional Resume Highlighter Avenue Indianapolis, IN (317) or MEDICAL EQUIPMENT SALES PROFESSIONAL PROFILE Sales and Customer Service Raised $10,000 for non-profit after-school programs by leading fundraising team of 10 volunteers Increased donations by 15% from previous year by use of marketing materials, cold-calling and developing corporate sponsorships Demonstrated effective persuasive skills in retail sales and met monthly quotas by 110% Provided excellent customer service by phone and in person in high volume, fast-paced environments Dealt with customer complaints effectively and efficiently, improving satisfaction survey results by 22% Management Trained 15 new employees in effective customer sales techniques Managed store, included five full-time employees, ensuring each shift ran smoothly and was staffed appropriately during peak hours Supervised various youth recreational activities for non-profit organization, including management of 100 volunteers Organizational Documented customer service calls using Microsoft Access Created a volunteer database using Microsoft Excel to track volunteer information, availability, and volunteering history Recognized by supervisors for efficiency and nominated for Employee of the Year (2008) Designed and developed a coding system in Microsoft Excel for a course research project Created monthly calendar, secured volunteers, and implemented activities for after-school program that served over 100 area youth PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE Fruehauf Leasing Corporation Indianapolis, Indiana Customer Service Representative, December 2011-Present YMCA Fishers, Indiana Youth Activity Coordinator, August 2010-December 2011 Things Remembered Indianapolis, Indiana Retail Associate and Trainer, May 2008-May 2010 Indiana University, Kokomo, Indiana Bachelor of Science, Business, May 2010

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