A well written resume can be the key to landing the job of your dreams. At the Computer Merchant we deal in resumes daily. A hiring manager on average will look at a resume for 20-40 seconds. This means you need to have something that is well polished, organized and is to the point. So, we decided to look at what formatting makes a good resume.
First thing we need to do is to decide what format of resume do we need to write. There are three main formats to resumes: Chronological, Functional or a Combination of both. The answer to the question depends a lot on where we are in our work career, are we just starting out? Are we changing fields? Have we been in the same field for many years and just changing companies? Are we at the top of our field applying for a top position? Let us look at the three types to figure out what we need.
If you have been in that same field for a while and are planning to stay in that field this is the format for you. This is also the format that most people think of when writing a resume. Your most recent experience will be listed first. This will give a hiring manager an easy way to view the progression of your career. You will start out with a Summary Statement. This statement is your one chance to catch the hiring manager’s eye. It should be short and to the point. It should also be geared to position you are applying for, why should they hire you to do X. Read the job description, pick up on terms they are looking for and use those terms. You need to catch their eye. Most job postings for top positions have hundreds or applicants with only 1 out of every 200 applicants being brought in for an interview. So do not miss your chance because you wrote a bad statement. After your statement you will enter your work experience in chronological order starting with the most recent. Finally, your education. That’s it. Ideally this will take up the front of one sheet of paper.
A functional resume is great for people who have gaps in their work experience or may have changed fields a few times, making some of their experience irrelevant to the position they are applying for. You want to focus more on achievements and accomplishments as well as qualifications that are relevant to the position you are applying for. This resume is highly customized to a specific job. Typical formatting for this resume is as follows: Summary Statement, Achievement/Accomplishments, Qualifications and then Education.
A combination resume is exactly what it sounds like, a combination of both. This resume format is reserved for those that are highly skilled and applying for a highly skilled position. These would be something along the lines of a Directors or Vice Presidents role. You would want to show the diversity of your background in a position like this. Formatting for this would be as follows. Summary Statement, Achievements/Accomplishments, Experience/Qualification and Education. You would certainly also include a Cover Letter along with this and this resume is acceptable to be more than one page.
A resume is an important tool in ones working career and everyone should be able to write one and keep it updated.
The Computer Merchant LTD. is a veteran-owned, national provider of IT staffing services, engineering, and workforce solutions. We have built a reputation as a quality staffing agency, ready and able to fill any IT job for any employer.