How to Write a Resume




About: I enjoy photography, horticulture and carpentry, and am almost always doing something relating to of those things.

Here are quick, easy instructions on how to write a resume, and an answer to one of life's burning questions.

I'd like to thank everyone who commented below with suggestions that I've added. Along with jeffreyf for pming me his suggestions.

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Step 1: What You'll Need

To write a resume, you're going to need MS Word, or any other writing software..but don't use wordpad, or notepad...they suck. You want it to have variable fonts, and things like that.

Depending on what your resume is for, you'll want some of these sections:

Computer Skills
Extra Activities
Honors and Awards
Other Qualifications
DOB (If you feel it's needed)*

Once you know which sections apply to your resume, you can continue.

*Your ability to get some jobs may depend on your age, so for a job like that, include it. If you don't think that your age is important, you can leave it out.

Step 2: Header

It's good to have a nice, but simple header. One of my favorites is like shown. Your name is on the left, with a font like Baskerville Old Face, and larger than the rest, with a horizontal rule underneath. And then having contact information to the right. I wasn't sure how to make a horizontal rule in Word 07, so I just used the line draw tool. Make sure you don't have a border on the text box that contains contact information. Also, remember not to use any wacky fonts. Use simple, easy to read fonts.

Step 3: Add Some Sections

I'll be writing mine as if I were applying for a photography job, in the future.

If you're just coming out of school, you will want to put your Education first, then Experience. Later on, you can switch the two around.

This is the one time when you're supposed to show off. Don't be cocky, but take advantage of it. List all the awards you've received. If you were employee of the month three months is a row, tell them!

ALWAYS spell check, and NEVER misspell the name of the company/school/anything else you are applying for. Bad grammar or spelling makes you look bad.

I like to use a different font for my section title, the the one I use for the text. I am using Baskerville Old Face, and Calibri. Many places will tell you that you should use only one font, some will say to you can use two. In my opinion, as long as they look similar, and compliment each other it's the same as using bold type on your resume. Keep in mind that in my resume, I am applying for a visual arts job, so a more visually appealing resume may help. While if you are applying for a job as an executive of some large corporation..they probably want it to be more down to business; you would do better with a single font.

The rule for numbers is as follows:
Zero to nine should be spelled out. 10 or above can be written in numerical form. Any mix of the two can also be written in numerical form.

See the picture for examples of how to write out education and experience.

When you are talking about experience, be specific. For example:

"The New York Times" - Summer of 2019-Summer of 2023
Photojournalist - I accompanied writers on the field, taking pictures to be published the next day. On over 100 occasions, my photographs were features on the front page of the newspaper. I worked on tight deadlines and handled a large amount of work.


This is extremely important. Don't just use a spell checker, read it for clarity. Not only might a spell check say "to" is alright when you need it to be "too," but you may have something in there that just might not make sense. You should take a break before proof reading, and also, read the last line first, then the second to last line, etc. This way, you are less likely to skim over a word that is spelled incorrectly. Review your simple spelling rules, if you aren't sure. Things such as:

Their or They're
To, Too, or Two

make a big difference.

Step 5: Print and Send It!

Once you know everything is just right, print it out. Look it over, does everything look nicely the way it is laid out? If so, make more copies, and send out your new resume!

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    40 Discussions


    2 years ago

    add your skills

    finally chick your mistakes


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Hey... thank you.
    It wil be useful. Now, have you some tips to enter in any oil companies?

    Thank you

    If you are right out of college, Education. If you have been out a while, you need to go with Experience. It also depends on the job and what they are looking for. The key is, the older you get and the more experience you get, the more you need to show it off.


    10 years ago on Step 5

    I like your clean approach to a resume, however yours is atypical from most peoples. My resume is past jobs, current references and skills/qualifications. In my experience these three parts are far more important than past education or objectives.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Resumes should be no longer than two pages. Also, resumes with an objective shows that you're still in the 1980s. I learned that the hardway. Instead you want a two line 'career summary' to be the first thing an employer sees; then skills; achievements; experience; education; referrences.


    12 years ago on Introduction

    This is too short for 16 years of a person's life! Don't resumes usually include DOB, and the dates you've been in education and work? I'd pad this out to two sheets, making up some positive guff to go under the work experience. And add some references at the bottom. L

    2 replies

    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    To me, a resume is a one page deal. Better to learn more about the job and tailor the resume than to go onto a second page. Offer to send a Curriculum Vitae if they want more, but the resume is a sales pitch, and you want to balance the resume to show that 1. You are a good match for THIS JOB (tailoring), 2. That you are a reliable and committed worker (by showing your work history) and 3. that you respect the resume reader's time (by keeping it as short, well-structured, and easy on the eyes as possible)- my $.02


    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    Since we are helping each other out here, this is my actual resume (names changed to protect innocent, etc.). As a contractor I encountered some strangeness as far as resumes go. The one I post here is the one I actually use to get work. There is no particular objective section. Just a section detailing qualifications proper for the job being applied for. The company I used to work for would use a much slimmer format. Mostly what you see in just the bold sections of my resume. No real details. These were bundled together to pitch on contract bids. Sometimes hundreds would be attached for work and some poor bloke would have to go through all of them to get a good feel for what the company had to offer. Thats why no details. Anyway, feel free to yell at me for doing something wrong on it and be sure to post ideas for improvement.


    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    You don't list any qualifications under that heading, it might be better renamed, and you could squeeze it into 2 pages. But anyway, interesting, and the sort of thing employers like. L


    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for the input. What sort of things _would_ you list under "qualifications?" Alternately, any suggestion on what to rename that section? Looking at it again it does look a little more like "hey look at me" than it does "qualifications."


    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    Qualifications would be things for which you have an exam certificate, diploma etc. But if you keep getting work, why change it? "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." L


    12 years ago on Introduction

    In Step 4, I find that if I take a break for a while before proofreading, I'm much better at catching mistakes. Otherwise, when it's still fresh in my head, I tend to "complete" sentences without actually reading them and miss errors.

    2 replies

    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    Same here. If I leave out a word or mis-order something and read it immediately, I tend to read it as I meant it, not read it as it is written.

    Will smeone PLEASE offer an alternative to this? It's like something i ripped out of a gradebook "how to write" guide and due to my lack of experience with good resume skills (only wrote 2 before because I only had 2 jobs before and both were horrible [work and resume]) I'd really find something that'd explain how to create a respectable grade resume very useful.


    12 years ago on Introduction

    ok, I wanna be nice, but honestly this looks like a 12 year old kid with absolutely no job experience is trying to educate us on something he/she knows nothing about. Anyone out in the workplace would see all the glaring problems with this resume. If you ever submit this to a corporate HR department it would be flagged, not to mention a violation of all age discrimination policies on revealing your age prior to employment. have you ever had a job? have you ever been to B&H? Unless you are Hasidic and a friend of the family, I doubt you would ever work there. .. and you'd make $8/ hour if you did. I'm sorry, but we must keep instructables in check, keep it real and have a critical process in place to maintain a better level of quality on this site.