Resume Styles And Rules For Different Careers
Resumes are tricky because you want to give the best first impression you possibly can to a prospective employer, but you have no way of knowing what that person may expect of you. Knowing what types of rules and styles may be best for your career might help you tailor your resume so that you can impress your prospective employer even if you don’t know what he or she prefers from a resume.
Being able to present yourself and your abilities well through a well-written and concise resume is important, and it may be your one and only shot to land an interview. Do you know where to start?
There are truly only five resume styles and the vast majority of people only need to use one style. However, there are many things that people do to detract from the qualities that they do have to put on a resume, and those things should be avoided. So, we’ll start with the things that you should always consider NOT doing when writing your resume:
Avoid using too much color. Many people believe that a brightly colored resume will get their resume noticed. This may be true, bright paper will get the attention of a prospective employer but it usually won’t be a good type of attention. Bright colors strain the eyes, so avoid brightly colored paper and font so that your resume will get more than a dirty look and will result in more than strained eyes.
Avoid using font that is either too large or two small. Many people want to really fill out their resume page and they make their font really large. Employers know this trick, and will notice that you are trying to make it appear as though you have more experience than you really do.
A little bit of experience can be just fine, especially if you are confident that it’s enough. Large font is a way of telling an employer that you know you are not qualified for lack of experience. Avoid small fonts, as you don’t want to have your resume tossed out because it causes eyestrain.
Avoid a very crowded looking resume. Use spaces between jobs, experience, and education so there are natural breaks. Spaces are a good thing where there should be a natural break. A space lets the reader know that you are moving onto a new subject. A well spaced and uncluttered looked resume is a lot more enjoyable to read, and it’ll make a better impression.
Avoid using overly flowery scripts. Playing with scripts and using different scripts and experimenting with bold and italicized fonts is fine, but when you choose lettering that is difficult to read you’ll have a hard time getting anyone to read your resume in its entirety. Choose fonts that are easy to read and give a very clean look to your resume.
Avoid too much design. Many people like to have their resume stand out by adding small designs at the top and bottom of every page. This can be fine, although you should avoid using too much design. When you add anything other than the necessary ingredients (information about qualifications, skills, and education) you risk the reader being distracted by that and not giving the actual information contained in the resume the attention and consideration it deserves.
Most people will find that they should use the historical/chronological resume style. This is a resume style that puts all of your employment and education in chronological order. This type of resume is easy to read, gives relevant dates to experience and education, and allows the reader to get a very in depth feel for your qualifications in a straight forward manner.
A chronological resume starts with your most recent job and goes backward in time, allowing the reader to see what you have been doing most recently and following your experience all the way back to your education. A chronological or historical resume is considered the easiest to read and effective type of resume that you can write. A chronological resume is usually considered standard for most careers and is your safest choice if you aren’t sure of formatting standards for your career field.
For individuals with a limited number of jobs or experience there is another resume style that may be more suitable. This type of resume style is called a functional resume style and emphasizes qualifications and abilities. Job titles and responsibilities are usually listed to help articulate why this experience is relevant to the position that is currently being applied for.
No dates are listed in a functional resume, and each job is usually listed by significance instead of in a chronological order. This can be a difficult resume style for employers to work with, for better results dates should be given to show stability. This is an idea resume style for executives that have only held one or two jobs for long periods or for younger individuals that just don’t have a lot of experience yet.
An analytical style resume is a third type of resume style that lists a chronological analysis of each particular skill or abilities. In an analytical resume work history and education are actually fragmented into talents and each skill is listed separately in chronological order.
An analytical resume usually omits dates and employers and instead uses a very analytical approach to show the importance of each skill or education piece obtained. This is a difficult resume style to write and read, but can be beneficial for people that are trying to change careers or are simply changing career goals.
A synoptic or amplified resume is the only type of resume that requires more than one page. On the first page there is usually a chronological list of employment. Amplification of these jobs is usually done on the second and possibly even third page where an in-depth description of each job is given.
There is a tendency to get long winded in this style of resume, so you need to be careful. An amplified resume usually is not necessary but it can be quite useful for those that have had jobs that exceed their job description.
A creative or imaginative resume is the fifth type of resume and is usually ideal for artists, those in graphics careers, and advertising fields. With a creative resume you can showcase your talents a bit more, use colors, although pale colors are better.
You should experiment with different fonts. One must be careful not to get too gimmicky or cute with a creative resume because the point is still to have all of your information listed in a format that is easy to read, will keep the attention of the reader, and will help you land an interview.
The type of resume that you need to write will depend on what job you are seeking, your past experience, and the person who will be reading it. A well-written and articulate resume is usually best, as is straightforward information including dates. Your chances at securing an interview and possibly a job are only as good as your ability to write a great resume, so get started!