As one semester ends and a new one awaits just around the river bend, there is one thing many students forget about in the haze of finals and holiday euphoria: Job Hunting. Whether we choose to acknowledge it or not, the next semester is coming and some of us need jobs to help keep afloat or just have extra cash to splash around.
That being said, it is useful to know how to put together an amazing resume that will blow the minds of your employer (not literally). Or, if you have already created a resume these tips will be helpful to spice and polish it to perfection. Either way, we all need great resumes and here is how to get one.
1. Visit the career advisor in school
Odds are, your university offers excellent career counseling and advising in order to make the job hunting process much easier to follow. Take advantage of that service (that you actually pay for) and book an appointment with one of the advisors.
They can assist you in formulating that dream resume and show you neat tricks to make the entire process less overwhelming. Not only that, if you feel like you have nothing to put on your resume, they will help and guide you to realize you have more than you think you have. Do not let the opportunity waste away.
2. Consider everything you have ever done
Regardless of how pointless it may seem, it is extremely helpful to think back and ruminate on anything you have accomplished in the past. This includes babysitting, teaching a couple of friends and any other achievement that seems little.
With the right tune up and the perfect job, that little thing may be the key to acceptance into that job. You have to consider everything, so you can have something to offer.
3. Tailor your resume to fit the job requirements
Notice I said tailor, not create. Do not formulate experience that you do not have. That is sad and bad, especially if you cannot deliver. However, you can tailor your resume so that it only consists of experience that is relevant to the job requirements.
Your prospective employers have lots of résumés to read… let the relevant experience be the first thing they notice when their eyes flick over that important one page. Do not waste space including unnecessary experience or accomplishments. Instead, elaborate more on that relevant experience.
4. Have a general base resume
This is the resume to end all resumes. This one should contain everything, and I mean everything you have ever done. It can be more than one page, it can look any way you want it to. You are not going to submit it to any employer.
However, you will use it as a base to create your actual resume from. Imagine you had lots of jobs to apply for, each with their own requirements. The base will be your go-to list where you can pick and choose what to insert in the real deal. Imagine it as a nice large piece of cloth and your tailored resume is the shirt you made from that cloth.
5. Use action words
Words have power, as we all know. Verbs pack a serious punch in the world of resume building. They create emphasis and add importance to whatever experience you are sharing. For instance, if you babysat little kids in your neighborhood you could put that as “Coordinated the activities of children 3+ to ensure their safety” or something along those lines.
Does it not sound much cooler than saying “babysat”? Find the right verbs to encompass your experiences, mention what you actually did and indicate the result or reason behind the action.
6. Never underestimate the power of bold and italics
If you want to draw the eye to a particular word and add emphasis to it, then use your powerful allies, bold and italics. They are there to help you get the attention of whoever is reading your resume.
If there are headings, important dates, etc. use either of them to accomplish the job of grabbing attention. Of course, it must be in moderation. Your entire document should not consist of bolded and italicized words. That would be annoying to read.
So, if you truly want your resume to shine in the night sky, do well to heed my little tidbits. Especially the first one because we can all do with a little wisdom from professionals. Happy job hunting!
PS: How many of you caught the Pocahontas reference in the first paragraph?