01 07

Resume writing faq

It can include much of the same information as the cover letter, but the formatted cover letter PDF should still be included as an attachment.

A good guide to writing a cover letter can be found here.

What should I write in my objective?

Objectives are generally a waste of real estate. Instead of an Objective, why not include a summary or Branding Statement? This is a concise, memorable statement that lets the reader know what you offer the company and shouldn't be more than a few lines long. These statements are not always necessary, but can be incredibly useful if you have chosen not to include a cover letter.

resume writing faq FAQ About Resume Writing - WorkAlpha

However, it is generally recommended that you produce a few variants to cover your bases in the following categories:
  • Industry - You may be a programmer with a background in many languages, but if you are going into web applications, you don't need to outline your past C++ projects.

  • Company Size - Smaller companies may be more interested in you as a person rather than as an employee. Also, smaller companies will often skip the hiring manager and put your resume right into the hands of your prospective boss, meaning your resume can have more technical lingo.

  • Country - If you are applying internationally, it can be useful to state your work permit eligibility.

How many resumes should I send out, and how much time should I spend on each one?

In today's economy, it is not uncommon to send out 20 resumes before receiving a call back. Each resume should be targeted toward the industry and position to which you are applying. That will mean that you have several variants of your resume. Every cover letter should also be targeted toward the specific position AND the company.

You've probably heard the adage of "Until you find a job, finding a job is your full-time job". It is up to you and your situation how much time you can and should put in to your job search.

Of course, you don’t want to take it to an extreme, as it is easy to cross the line onto keyword spam. Try to match as many of the points in job posting as possible. If they require MS Office, put it in your resume. If they require experience with education planning, try to [elegantly] fit that phrase somewhere into your resume. More information on ATS.

Do I include soft skills?

So your job posting says that they require good interpersonal skills. Contrary to the previous point on keywords, do not put in your resume that you have great interpersonal skills, especially if you have no clue what that means, like most of us.

With that, this is a contentious topic and will need to be addressed to your specific resume.

Should I list partial or incomplete degrees?

If you have incomplete education, you are probably stuck in the decision of removing it or having gap years in your resume. If you intend to finish the education and you have an expected graduation date, include the education and put in what the expected date is. If you have incomplete education that you do not intend to complete, the most important question is if its still relevant. Two years of engineering and are applying to be a instrumentation technologist?

You can include future education (eg. starting university course in this September), but do not include positions offered but not accepted.

Should I include my GPA?

Many resources like to boil this down to a hard rule. Never if under 3.0 and always if over 3.5. This is a good starting point, but needs more refining. If you list work experience before education, your GPA is probably not important enough to be included on your resume at all. Your GPA for your graduate degree is even less interesting, and you should focus more on your specific accomplishments rather than a number. Here are some more general guidelines.


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