Students straight out of their educational institute seldom have the work experience to show to the recruiters which is why they must learn to write a resume that doesn’t necessarily need work experience.
Choose Calibri, Times New Roman, or Ariel. These are the fonts most appreciated by recruiters and they look professional and are heavily used in professional situations. Keep the font size from 10-12. The layout should be clean, and for format use reverse chronological order, so the recruiters can easily navigate your resume. If the design is put in, it should be sleek and not distracting, the colors can be used according to the career or job’s needs but more serious jobs like finance or law require their resume to have one color only, black or gray preferably.
Check grammatical mistakes and punctuation repeatedly as small typos are an instant eye-catcher and give the recruiter an impression of the applicant being unprofessional and lacking attention to detail. When you write a resume, use bullet points, always starting with the action words to keep the reader engaged, and properly go over the job description every time to properly interweave the keywords into your resume so it passes ATS.
Write your official name, the one in your ID, phone number, home address in a singular line, (consisting of town, city, and postal code) professional email address, and your LinkedIn profile but make sure its content matches with what you’ve written in your CV and it doesn’t have anything that may lead to your disqualification or being blacklisted like the content of racial discrimination, or any other information that may not go with the company’s values and ethics.
This is the part if executed perfectly can grab the attention of the recruiter and ensure they read your resume. This section is basically what a professional cv writing company will charge you for. Write a resume summary, with no more than 3-4 lines, describing how you are the perfect fit for their company and this applied position. What you can bring to the company and also write the achievement that you are most proud of, even if they are achieved in an internship or a volunteer project it’s better if it includes quantitative information and only if it is directly related to the field you are applying for. Sometimes you can get rejected from this section too so before writing this consider what you want your first impression to be because the recruiter will read this to know the applicant before going over to read the whole resume.
This is the section that will be most focused on as compared to more common resumes where work experience is almost always highlighted. Write from your most to least recent qualifications, including the GPA if it’s more than 3.5. Go through the job description of the position you will be applying for and then write only those courses that are most related to it.
Internships are commonly done but in case you haven’t done one you can still do it right now to improve your resume. Some applicants downplay internships and don’t think of them as experience. An internship is a great stepping stone to start your career and counts just as much as work experience in your resume. If you have been an intern in the relevant field, you can go ahead and write it down. Mention if you have contributed to a project, achieved a result for the company, and/or worked in collaboration to fulfill the given target.
Volunteer work or working in clubs or societies can also be written down as work experience. Write down the name of the organization or society which you volunteered for, the date when you did it, and your responsibility or achievement in it. For example, if you have led the fundraising and gathered $30,000 for the children’s hospital you can count it as a work experience as it involved leadership, management, and budgeting.
Soft and hard skills you learn while being a part of a project in university, volunteer work, or an internship are very valuable. For example, you are the president of the student council at university and have to lead the team to plan an event including planning for its funding and execution, this project will provide you with many hard skills like management, and marketing which can be mentioned when applying for a specific position like management-related, budgeting or finance position. When putting these down also write the soft skills you have developed by being on this and other volunteer projects and being an intern, skills like effective communication, problem-solving, and collaboration/teamwork. Most of these skills are usually transferable skills as they can go with almost every other job description.
Certificates and Awards
If you have a certificate that applies to the said job then go ahead and put that in as this will show the recruiter you are ready to go above and beyond for the job and you are very interested in this line of work. Certificates also mean the employee needs to be trained less which is another factor that will increase your chances of getting a callback. Always mention the name of the organization that certified you and the date you were certified.
You can include the awards you may have received in university or for any other reason like a gold medal, distinction, leadership awards, etc. They shouldn’t be very outdated as the decade-old award won’t account for anything.
Being multilingual can never go wrong. You’ll always have a plus point by having that second language under your belt. For example, if a person is applying for a barista position in a high society café being multilingual will be a very attractive factor for the applicant as cafes most particularly high society ones always bring in foreigners and it will be good for the reputation of the business to have an employee proficient in multiple languages.
Interests that don’t align with the job description should be avoided because recruiters are not interested in the activities you undertake outside of the workplace. But some interests perfectly align with a specific kind of job and should be mentioned for example illustration as a hobby for someone who is applying for the position of social media marketing will enhance their resume.