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Resume Guide

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Resume Layout

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What a Resume Should Look Like - Resume Layout is important for your career life

A great deal of care and much more formatting is necessary to achieve an attractive layout for your paper resume for your career life. And, while there is no single appropriate layout that applies to every resume to get a good  job, there are a few basic rules to follow in putting your resume on paper.

Leave a comfortable margin on the sides, top, and bottom of the page (usually one to one and a half inches).
Use appropriate spacing between the sections (two to three line spaces are usually adequate).
Be consistent in the type of headings you use for different sections of your resume. For example, if you capitalize the heading EMPLOYMENT HISTORY, don't use initial capitals and underlining for a section of equal importance, such as Education.
Do not use more than one font in your resume. Stay consistent by choosing a font that is fairly standard and easy to read, and don't change it for different sections. Beware of the tendency to try to make your resume original by choosing fancy type styles; your resume may end up looking unprofessional instead of creative. Unless you are in a very creative and artistic field, you should almost always stick with tried-and-true type styles like Times New Roman and Palatino which are often used in business writing. In the area of resume styles, conservative is usually the best way to go.
Always try to fit your resume on one page. If you are having trouble with this, you may be trying to say too much. Edit out any repetitive or unnecessary information, and shorten descriptions of earlier jobs when possible. Ask a friend you trust for feedback on what seems unnecessary or unimportant. For example, you may have included too many optional sections. Today, with the prevalence of the personal computer as a tool, there is no excuse for a poorly laid out resume. Experiment with variations until you are pleased with the result.

Professional Looking Resume

How your resume looks is sometimes almost as important as what your resume says. Be sure to make your resume look as professional as possible by making it both appealing to the eye and easy to follow. Use the following pointers to help you get the professional look that you want. A heading presents your name, address, and telephone number. Express your creativity in designing a heading. You may also wish to use this heading for cover letters, thank-you notes, and other correspondence. Be sure your name stands out.

Resume Objective

If you include a job objective, it is always the first item on your resume following your heading. The job objective statement may be labeled Objective, Job Objective, Job Target, Career Objective, Employment Objective, or Professional Objective.

It may be helpful to state a job or career objective describing the focus of your job search. This resume objective is a summary, or lead statement, for the rest of your resume focuses on what you can do, states how you can be of help to the employer, identifies employer where and how you might fit in the organization, and tells the employer that you have definite goals.

The statement may be one word, a job title, a phrase, a sentence fragment, or a sentence including the job title or career area. The simplest resume objective statement may be just the name of the position or job area. If you use a sentence it should contain action verbs and tell the employer what you intend to do, such as sell, supervise, clean, fix, build or operate.

Resume must be visually appealing to gain a good first impression. It should attract the attention of anybody to have a look and read it thoroughly. Careful addition of graphical elements including font and style, plus your input, would definitely make your resume enticing and effective.

There are many design elements to help you come up with a terrific final layout. The standard or the traditional style is the One-column resume layout in which every line is justified to the left, having your objective, employment history, and education background placed in blocks of the pages. There are also Two-Column Resume and Centered resume styles for those applicants who want to break the traditional design of resume. These are quiet appealing but sometimes not as readable as the One-column resume layout. And recently, there are applicants who use bulleted style in their resume because there are some employers who prefer this style as these allow them to quickly scan the resume.

Applicants must also focus on the detailed layout of their resume, neat and well-presented resume strengthen the applicant’s proposition. Good resume layout observes consistency in the use of italics, capital letters, abbreviations, bullets, boldface, and underlining.

In resume writing, use of short sentences or phrases is recommended. Separate each section using paragraphs. Limit the wording around six sentences per paragraph or section. Start phrases with verb but avoid using verb or adjective twice or thrice within the same paragraph to avoid redundancy. Keep sentences concise and direct as much as possible. Remove all irrelevant information and avoid duplication. Maintaining accuracy in writing your resume is needed especially to the time, dates, places, or seminars.

Observe proper verb tenses. Use past tense for those deeds or accomplishments that happened in the past. Eliminate pronouns like “I, he or she”. The applicant’s name must be written in bold caps on the first page. Also put section headings of skills, titles or companies, degrees, and school name in boldface. As a general rule, spell out numbers under and including ten; and use the numerical form for numbers over and including 11, unless they are the first words in a sentence. Spell out abbreviations whenever possible. Avoid acronyms or pretentious vocabulary because it will make the reader difficult to understand any vague words.

The length of resume varies, depending on the achievements and attainment of the candidates or applicants. But one or two pages of resume which bear the essential details of the applicant is already sufficient. Never staple your resume.

Print your resume using a laser printer or an ink jet printer that produces high- quality results. A laser is best because the ink won't run if it gets wet. It should look typeset. Use a standard conservative typeface (font) in 11 or 12 point. Do not use just any paper; it is your resume it represents for who you are. Avoid a strategic scheme to promote your resume such as artistic designs, colored paper and ink, or anything that can alter the attention of the reader. Use off-white, ivory or bright white 8 1/2 x 11-inch paper, in the highest quality you can afford.

In short, resumes must be perfect all through from top to bottom without even a single error and data inaccuracy. Any mistakes can lead to misinformation and it may cause your personality and credibility. Check all the key elements of the resume, have somebody other than you proof read your resume to ensure that all is well said and perfectly done because first impressions really last.

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