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Resume Advice

A resume is should be a simple description of the skills, experience, education, and achievements.  Your Resume is a marketing document. It is NOT intended to be a book or life history.  Keep it simple, don’t make it your job obituary.

  • Use 1" margins for top, both sides and bottom. Use Arial or similar style type with no smaller font size than 10. Keep the type styles and sizes uniform and avoid overusing bold, italics, and capitalization.
  • Check and double-check spelling and dates. Use Spell Check and have a friend check for misused words, typos, and grammatical errors that Spell Check often misses. Always make sure your address, phone and e-mail are correct.
  • Choose you verbiage carefully.  Speak about your most recent position in current tense and use the past tense to describe earlier employment.  Try to eliminate the word or references to “I” in your resume.  Too many “I’s” can make employers think you are not a team player.
  • Do not use highly technical terminology, as you want your message to be understood by all who may view it.  Do use “buzzwords” connected with your background and industry knowledge.  ie:  OSHA, or HAACP, PLC’s, MRP or Lean Manufacturing, etc.
  • If your background includes experience using certain machinery or equipment, use the name or other terminology.  “High Speed Packaging Equipment or Injection molding of PET & high speed” or processing for HDPE, PET systems.  Make sure anyone reading your resume can pick out keywords to put your resume in the “do interview” stack.
  • Make certain that under each company title for who you have worked you include a description of the company.  Everyone does not know what ABC Manufacturing does.
  • Most resumes are stored in a database.   A resume of two pages or less that can easily be electronically stored is best.  Keep the resume short, use type that can be read easily, avoid fancy formats, macros, internal tables, pictures, etc. 
  • When mailing a resume, use white paper of a good grade.  White paper copy's best.

Other helpful tips when sending your resume electronically are:

  • Many companies will not take the time to unzip a file.  Many companies and some recruiters will not open a document as an attachment, so you may want to cut and paste into body of the e-mail, but make sure of the formatting before you hit send. 
  • Make it attractive, make it represent you to the best of your ability.
  • Choose a professional e-mail address.  Do not use "cutsie" or offensive addresses such as "hottie@aol.com
  • You can also search for dozens of example resumes by visiting this link:  http://search.officeupdate.microsoft.com/templategallery/ct116.asp.
Do not use a compression program such as Winzip (or attach multiple documents) so it automatically zips and compresses. 

General Guidelines When writing a Resume

The most effective resumes are short  -  very seldom more than two pages. (Do not buy into the one page resume theory.  While a good idea, anyone with two or more positions will require more than one page.)  Remember, the hiring authority has to learn enough from your resume to want to talk with you, just don't overdo it.   A great resume should get the readers attention within the first two minutes.  There are hundreds of resume formats, some good, some not so good.  Some tips are listed below.

Tips for creating a resume.

Choose a Format or Style of Resume

The Chronological resume outlines your education, work history beginning with your current position and working backward.  As you address each position you have held, describe your duties and responsibilities followed by your accomplishments  (Use verifiable numbers that mean something to the hiring authority; such as, 15% increase in yields, 19% reduction in employee lost time injuries, reduced budget by $500,000 the first 6 months, etc.   This type of resume is preferred by the majority of employers and recruiters because it provides information about the number and types of employers, how long you worked for companies, what you did at those firms, and how well you performed your duties. This format makes it easy to understand and evaluate a candidates’ career history.

The Functional or Achievement resume lists achievements and then lists employers, dates, and titles. We never recommend the Functional or Achievement resume style, nor as a recruiting firm will we send them our employers!!!  These resumes are difficult to read and cost a lot of time for employers and recruiters.  Help us help you!

The following is a sample resume designed to provide information in a simple, direct, and easy to understand format. Microsoft Word is normally the best format. 

YOUR NAME (in caps and bold)
12728 Address
City, ST Zip Code
(xxx) 555-5555 H
(xxx) 555-5554 W
(Note: Don’t use your email address at work-get your own from Hotmail, Yahoo, etc)

OBJECTIVE: Title of the Position you seek.  (A position as a Production Manager in the food industry) (Keep this a simple, 1 sentence statement)

MBA, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO, 1998  GPA 3.6 (List highest degree first)   
B.S. Accounting, Drury College,  Springfield, MO 1996.GPA 3.5 (If over 2.8 )

(List training relevant to your expected/desired career or the job for which you are applying)
CPA,  Missouri, 2000
Six Sigma

Company One Inc. 2001 to Present
Company Description  -  Describe your job and identify the industry in a simple sentence. Such as (Fortune 500 manufacturer of plastic bags for the food industry)

Your Title           Production SupervisorAccomplishments include:

  • Wrote financial justification reports, cost estimates, and project schedules for capital and cost saving projects.
  • Trained approximately 150 employees and 10 managers in the use of Synergy 2000 (Quality Control Software)
  • Wrote financial justification reports, cost estimates, and project schedules for capital and cost saving projects.
  • Developed and implemented cost saving initiatives on existing equipment and process.  (Note:  List two to four accomplishments, keep descriptions simple, show dollar value of the accomplishment.  Give the potential employer a reason to interview you by creating interest in you and your proven abiltiy.)

Company Two Inc. 1998 to 2001
Your Last Title (2000 to 2001)
Use same format as company 1.  List Accomplishments using same format as Company One.
Designed ………. Saved $500,000. Etc
Managed a project that……….. Produced more than $XXX, XXX in profits.

Your Previous Title (Same Company) (1998 to 2000)
Describe this job and duties in two or three sentences

Company Three Inc. 1996 to 1998
Title  Internship (worked full time while attending school)

Follow the same outline as Company One and Two, etc. For jobs more than 10 years in the past, provide progressively less detail.

Note: After listing your employers, titles, job descriptions and accomplishments, note any other relevant experience you may have gained while a student (Internship, Co-op, etc) or while serving in the Military.

US Navy 1985 to 1992
Rank at Discharge
Describe military experience only if it is relevant to your career.

Depending on the industry and the type of work you perform, it may be necessary to list skills that are particularly relevant to the kind of job you seek. A Quality Manager might list training in Lean Manufacturing, Six Sigma, or Specialized Management Systems.  An accountant would want to note the fact they have passed the CPA or CMA exam. 

REFERENCES: Available on request
(Do not list references on resume)

PS: I use LinkedIn to keep up with my professional contacts and help them with introductions. You are welcome to join my network. http://www.linkedin.com/in/alicepollockcpc

  • Supervised shifts of 50-70 employees; established goals and competencies, instituted incentive programs, and conducted performance evaluations.
  • Partnered with scheduling and forecasting departments to assure schedule adherence.
  • Fostered and facilitated self-directed work teams.
  • Directed staff meetings and strategic planning sessions.
  • Experience with extrusion, packaging, warehousing, rotary and scheldahl machines.

(Sentences should explain what you do & your responsiblities)

http://www.linkedin.com/in/alicepollockcpc  ||  Springfield, MO  ||  Phone: 417/742-4420