What You Should Include On Your Resume

Virtual Resume & LetterYou’ve probably heard the word “resume” as early as middle school. It’s an important document that every job seeker will create at least once in their lives. Your resume will show employers who you are, what your experience is, and what your accomplishments have been. A resume can be a very intimidating document, but once you know what you should include, you’ll be ready for any interview or open position. So what are recruiters and employers looking for in a resume?

  • Contact information: You won’t always be e-mailing your resume to an employer. You might see someone in person and hand it to them face to face. If they’re interested in getting in touch with you, they should have your contact information. This includes not only your name, but your address, telephone number and e-mail address. Make sure these are all valid ways of reaching you. There’s nothing more frustrating than a disconnected line or a bounced e-mail.
  • Your objective: So many people forget to include their objective on their resume. This is also known as a mission statement, explaining what type of employment you’re looking for and what type of worker you are. Avoid the cliches and general statements like “hard working”, “punctual”, and “fast learner”. Find other ways of describing these traits.
  • Your skills: It’s not enough to have graduated and working at a well respected company. What kind of skills do you have? Can you operate a PC and a Mac? Do you know Adobe Design Suite as well as web programming language? Are you a fast typer? Include these skills on your resume. Obviously, don’t include things that have nothing to do with the job you’re going for. If you are applying to be a retail manager, your culinary skills won’t matter much. Be specific.
  • Your experience: The most obvious part of the resume, your potential employer will want to know where you worked previously. It doesn’t have to be only paid positions; include your internships and volunteer opportunities. If you have any experience in the job opportunity, be sure to include it. Don’t forget to list the company or business, the dates of employment, and your responsibilities. The interviewer will want you to elaborate further.
  • Your education: If you’re just going to college, you should include your high school information, including the date you graduated, grade point average, and extra curricular activities. If you’ve been in college for a while or recently graduated, remove your high school info and just include your college stats. Don’t forget your major and minor (if applicable).
  • Achievements: Whether you accomplished something at school or at your job, be sure to include that information on your resume as well. It may be a question asked anyways, and they’ll see you’re goal oriented and willing to get things done.
Some people also include their references and have a resume that’s 3 pages long. Try your best to keep your resume one page, relevant to the specific job opportunity, and up to date. If you need assistance with formatting your resume, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of free templates you can find online. Keep a Word version and a PDF version, as well as a hard copy with you at all times.

Edwin C

Edwin is a marketer, social media influencer and head writer here at Money In The 20's. He manages a large network of high quality finance blogs and social media accounts. You can connect with him via email here.

6 thoughts on “What You Should Include On Your Resume

  • September 26, 2011 at 2:24 pm
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    Everything and I mean everything I’ve read lately says to nix the objective altogether. My career counselor on campus even says to nix objectives simply because they can pigeon hole a candidate far too much and employers don’t care for reading them.

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    • September 28, 2011 at 9:29 am
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      Yea, that used to be a staple for the resume but I see fewer and fewer of them.

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  • September 26, 2011 at 7:08 pm
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    Resumes should fit the particular job you are applying for. Objectives are appropriate for young or inexperienced applicants. Once you have 5 years experience, objectives are not as important. Resumes should contain accomplishments. Employers want to know you have skills and can wither save your employer money or perform the job.

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  • September 27, 2011 at 5:27 pm
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    You’re right KC; accomplishments are the name of the game. Employers want to know if you’re goal oriented and what you can do for them.

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  • September 27, 2011 at 7:28 pm
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    I have found that the biggest mistake college age people make is to include too much information about their high school information. If you don’t have any other work experience, then I say include it. But, if you have been involved in enough activities, you should get rid of the high school stuff as if it never existed.

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  • September 29, 2011 at 9:19 am
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    I have used so many online templates and finally found the best mix of white space and experience for my current version. A resume is the first impression but nowadays the keywords in them are just as important because typically the first scan is done by a computer.

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