Many opinions abound on how to write a resume. Ask any 20 people and you'll likely end up with 21 answers (even if you didn't have one of your own).
While this Instructable may appear rather wordy, there is a wealth of information within plus a concept you really do need to understand for success. Can you get a job without this? Of course you can, others prove it every day. Will you increase your employment success with my method, unquestionably, and as a side benefit you will learn tips for interviews. Personally my success rate from resume to interview approached 45%. Not to say that my interviews always went that well but the resume did get me consideration. As well as it turned out I didn't have enough attempts at applying for jobs to make a valid statistical analysis. Somehow it never took long to get a job and I've never been unemployed for more than two weeks.
Why all the diversity in answers? Just like in weight-loss programs, everyone has an opinion and they will try to convince you they know what works. Mine is just an opinion too. After you finish my "ible" and you begin having dramatically improved results, hopefully even ending with a new job, you too will realize just how right I was. A resume should be as unique as the person writing it and you'll understand that very soon. What works for one person will not necessarily work for everyone but may work for some others. The concept should work for most.
With so many ways of writing a resume, which resume style will work best for me? That's right, you may need a few different ones depending on the jobs you seek. So how do you know what to do?
What is a Resume?
Since almost everyone needs an income it follows they also require a job of some kind or work for themselves. To remain within the context of the "ible" we will not consider self-employment here. To apply for jobs you either use an application or a resume (call it what you want but a CV and a resume are the same thing in my world, however the nose is stuck just a bit further in the air when saying CV or in the latin form, curriculum vitae).
According to Dictionary.com
resume - Pronunciation [rez-oo-mey] - a noun
1. a summing up; summary.
2. a brief written account of personal, educational, and professional qualifications and experience, as that prepared by an applicant for a job.
According to Wikipedia
A resume is a document that contains a summary or listing of relevant job experience and education. The resume or CV is typically the first item that a potential employer encounters regarding the job seeker and is typically used to screen applicants, often followed by an interview, when seeking employment.
Let's set something straight early in this "ible". A resume is not the same tool as a job application. Job applications tend to be fill-in-the-blank forms prospective employers use to make it easier to gather information on applicants in an easy, uniform format. The advantage of application forms is to cookie cutter fit prospective employees, to then sort these quickly and hire who closest meets your immediate need. These jobs tend to be general labor, minimum wage, high turnover, and basic skill level jobs. Don't get me wrong here; there is nothing wrong with these jobs or the application form hiring practice. Resumes are generally used for advanced skill, specific career, higher benefit, and lower turnover type jobs. You wouldn't bring caviar to a tailgate party would you? It is important to use the correct tool for the correct job. Using a resume to apply to a fast-food burger joint can be just as harmful to a successful hiring as an application form is when applying for position as a computer consultant. One is overkill while the other is under kill; either way you are broadcasting you do not understand the difference. Not in a good way, anyway.
What will a good resume Do For You?
Even today, many people still think a good resume gets you a good job. Wrong!
Just like a good education does not give you a good job, a good resume will only get you "some consideration". "Some consideration" by a potential employer, that's it, plain and simple.
How much of "some" will depend on how you are perceived by the prospective employer to which you apply? The good news is that you can have a direct input into this influence. The perception can be directed by your resume as well in person.
I ask you; how can you maximize the desired perception when applying for a job if you do not know the prospective company nor what they consider important from applicants?
It's that perception is what gets you a more consideration.
You likely have your own opinions and views of how the hiring process goes, at least from an applicants' viewpoint. But have you considered the viewpoint of an employer?
WARNING: What you are about to read is likely going to offend some readers. Not because of violence or language, rather because of it's truths.