How To Make A Professional Resume
The best resume is a one catered to the specific position you are applying for. Too many job applicants make silly mistakes on their copies. Things like typos, misspellings and job objectives that don’t apply to the position you are interested in can lead to your resume automatically going to the no pile.
To make a professional resume be sure to avoid silly mistakes and errors. A clean neat well organized document on quality stock paper is all it takes to have that professional appearance that you want.
The perfect resume is catered to the job at hand. You may have a forklift certification, but that probably won’t help you land that programming position you have been interested in. A well thought out and well organized resume makes you look thoughtful and organized. These are skills your potential employer is probably interested in.
You want your resume to be easy to read. A few decades ago, creating a quality resume was a major chore that frequently ended up being a one size fits all document that was marked with typos, eraser marks, or even white out. Thanks to computers there is no excuse not to have a resume that shows your best qualifications and is also catered to the specific position that you are applying for.
The most basic example would include your current contact information at the top. Then a brief synopsis of your work experience. Then education experience. Then list any extra skills or info that you think is pertinent to the job. Try to keep it to one page and make it scannable. Hiring mangers have a lot on their plates and the easier to glance over your qualifications the better.
Example of Resume
How To Make Free Resumes
Free resumes are the best kind. With a computer and a little effort you can make your own. You can find many online templates or just use your favorite word processing software. Most will have premade templates and wizards or you can just format it yourself using lines, spaces, bullet points and bold text where applicable.
There are 3 main types to choose from. These are Chronological, Functional and Combination. Try to put yourself in the position of the hiring manager. What are they looking for to fill this particular position? Then choose the format that will best highlight the skills and qualifications that you have that will apply to the position.
It is always a good idea to make a custom resume for each position that you are applying for. There was a time when this was a daunting task, but now it’s as easy as referring to your master copy and making a new copy that will highlight specific skills for the open position. If you are trying to decide which format to use, here are some pointers.
- Chronological – A time based resume with your experience listed in reverse chronological order. Begin with your most recent job and work backwards. You still want to highlight your experience which pertains to the job at hand. A great way to show how you have advanced and received promotions and increased responsibility. Not the best choice if you want to downplay your age or minimize gaps in employment.
- Functional – This is skills based and focuses on your qualifications. This is a great way to show what you have learned and are capable of. If you are a programmer and you are skilled in many programming languages, as well as project management and network administration, you have a valuable skill set that your potential employer needs to know about. Be careful though, some managers still want to know your employment history and career progression. So make it clear and useful, not just a vague list of amazing skills.
- Combination – This is the choice where you can really tailor things to fit your skill set and the potential job. Take the best of each of the above two and make the perfect resume that not only your best experience and skills, but makes a document no hiring manager would want to pass up.
Keep in mind the entire purpose of this document is to highlight your skills and abilities, so that the human resources person can match the right person to the job. Think of this as a way to make a one page advertisement of your most valuable commodity, you.
Resume Templates Can Make Creation Easier
Resume templates are a great way to organize your qualifications. You can easily fill in the blanks with your pertinent information and not have to worry about formatting or wondering what goes next. Fortunately, it is easy to find a free resume template.
Microsoft Word Resume Template
Your results may vary a bit depending on which version of Word you are using, but here are the basics.
- Open Word
- Type resume template in the search box
- The drop down box will give you many options to choose from. You can choose from chronological, functional or job specific like a registered nurse or a chef.
For our example we are going to choose Secretary Resume.
- A popup box will open with the download link.
- Download the template
Once you have the template you can edit it in word. Just click on a field and add your own personal information. Be careful because editing Word can be a bit challenging at times. Click on or highlight the data to be edited and overwrite it. Be careful not to click on the main structure of bullet points.
If you mess up the main structure too much. Don’t be disheartened. Just download a fresh template and start over. You will get the hang of it.
Microsoft also has a resume wizard where you pick and choose what you want the resume to have. Word formats it and then you fill out the field. There are even articles on the MS site that can be accessed through the Word help panel.
Even if you don’t own Word, you can go to a library and use Word to create a great resume. Just be sure and don’t save your information on a public computer. To keep a copy of your resume bring along a thumb or USB drive and save your information on it.
This way you will always have your copy that you can edit and improve upon. It’s also good to have an electronic copy to adjust it a bit for each new job you apply for. Many HR departments operate online these days, anyway. So you will need an electronic copy to submit with online applications.
It’s also a good idea to print a physical copy. That way you will have your information for longevity’s sake, and you can hand them out at interviews.
Customer Service Resume
One of the most popular jobs out there today are customer service positions. No matter whether you are working for a technology company, a product company or a service company having qualified customer service reps is a must.
There are over 2 1/2 million customer service reps in the US and the job outlook is 3% higher than the average, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. A quality customer service rep will be a great communicator. They need to enjoy speaking with people and have the ability to think fast and understand problems while still being able to empathize with the customer’s issue.
Having great organizational skills and the ability to juggle many things at once, while still getting interruptions is a must. Putting multitasking on your resume may or may not be a good idea. It is one of those buzzwords that people use, but we now know that multitasking isn’t really possible. It’s just quickly switching from one task to another and then back. It isn’t actually possible to do two tasks at one. That is why quick thinker, fast on your feet, or able to switch between tasks efficiently, may be a better quality than multitasking.
Let’s go back to our Office templates and look at their example. It looks like they have created a combination resume, that lists skills and achievements along with a chronological employment history. This can be a great model, but the best way to land the job is to tailor the information for the specific job you are applying for.
Use the web and research the company. Find out a little bit about what they do or what their products are. If you can find a particular problem they are having or know of a way to highlight how you possess the skills they are looking for then do so.
Keep in mind that key customer service skills are organization and communication. So a well organized and clearly stated resume is a must. Also, if you have any technical skills be sure to list them. Being familiar with computers, software and having the ability to touch type, only makes your job and the job of the trainer easier.
Pay close attention to your customer service resume objective and focus on things like the following.
- Communication and Interpersonal Skills
- Problem Solving
- Customer Service
- Organizational Skills
- Ability To Work Under Pressure
- Ability To Adapt
The following sample customer service resume will give you an idea of how to move forward, but be sure to customize the information to fit your skills and the individual job.
Administrative Assistant Resume
When creating an administrative assistant resume you can use any of the formats. What you decide to highlight will depend on your skill set, but the popular combination format is a good way to let the employer know where you shine.
You can list your administrative assistant resume objective on the top and then highlight your professional experience and work history. Then move on to education and additional skills that you may have.
An administrative assistant resume sample would start with your skills and then move on to experience. It just depends on what you need to highlight about yourself for that particular job. An administrative assistant can where many hats, some are like secretaries, some receptionists, and others are more like personal assistants.
Important skill sets for administrative assistants include. Having technology skills. If you can find your way around a computer and better yet, have introductory web skills, and know how to search and communicate effectively online. You will be in demand.
Another tech skill that is almost required for administrative people is MS Office. Especially, knowing your way around excel. If you can make a spreadsheet and add formulas to actually save time and quantify your business. You will be indispensable. Knowing your way around a spreadsheet is a quick way to impress a boss, and save time and stay organized. The following skills are super helpful.
- Computer Skills – Knowing how to use hardware and software is an almost indispensable administrative skill.
- Communication Skills – Both verbal and written. Being able to communicate clearly, as well as listen and understand. Be able to trouble shoot and ask the right questions.
- Be Organized – It’s your job to keep things organized and help your department stay focused. Organization is a crucial skill.
- Be a Problem Solver – Problem solving is a huge part of keeping things running smoothly. Being proactive instead of chasing fires is an extra plus of qualifications.
- Have Excellent Planning Skills – Nothing gets accomplished without a plan. If you are capable of planning effectively, not only will your job be easier, but the whole department will run better.
- Time Management – Staying on track and knowing how to set and meet deadlines is a crucial skill. Stay on top of things and learn how to change course when time is running scarce.
If you have any of these crucial skills. Let your employer know. Also, if you have used these skills in your past work experience put it down. It helps to run through it in your mind too. That way when you get to the interview, which you will with your awesome resume, you can dazzle the interviewer with your practical applications of your amazing qualifications and experience.
Nursing is one of the most popular career choices in the US. Anyone who has actually been a nurse knows that it is a lot of hard work. You have to be hard working and caring and empathetic to be a nurse. You can’t be squeamish, you need amazing people skills and you generally have to have a desire to help people.
Nursing isn’t all paychecks and health benefits. It’s long hours, a lot of responsibility and a lot of stress. Even though, there are never enough quality nurses to go around, having a resume that highlights your unique qualifications is still necessary to land that ideal nursing position.
If you are applying for an entry level nursing job, you may not have a lot of experience to share. So you may want to begin with your contact info, then a quality objective, then work experience, affiliations, and education. You can find a nursing resume template by searching resumes in Microsoft Office.
If you are going for an LPN or LVN position you may want to pad out your experience, qualifications, and education more. If you have been working and are licensed chances are you have quite a few skill sets to include.
If you went for it in school and you are applying for an entry level RN position, you may have the education, but not the work experience to back it up. For this you will want to start with an objective, then work experience, then education, affiliations, and skills. It’s always a good idea to highlight your strengths and downplay any possibly perceived weaknesses.
If you are an RN career changer, you may want to use the same format, but really highlight the contributions you have made with previous work experience shine. You have the education, the skills, and the experience. Let the prospective employer know about it.
Don’t be afraid to toot your own horn. You know you have what it takes, but they won’t know unless you tell them. This isn’t a time to be shy or humble. You not only have the notches on your belt, you have the drive and determination to move on in your nursing career. Hopefully, these nursing resume examples were helpful.
Sales Associate Resume
The sales associate resume sample is an interesting example. This resume can be entry level or it can be a very high level associate. There is money in sales and many very well off folks have made it into a lifetime career.
There are books, seminars, movies and entire communities based on the science and art of selling. One thing that all sales folks have in common is that if you can’t sell yourself, you probably can’t sell anything else. So, yes, a sales associate resume is that important.
Skills that make a good sales associate are interpersonal skills, organizational skills, and of course communication. You not only need to make the prospective customer trust and like you. You also need to be part psychologist and help steer them to the decision that the product you are selling is the product they want to have.
With the right questions you can guide them to this conclusion. People spend lifetimes perfecting the art of the sale. Obviously, how you organize your sales resume will depend on your experience and the type of sales job you are going for.
If you don’t have a lot of experience, you may want to highlight your skills first. If you have experience you may want to create a clear chronological resume so that your prospective employer can see all of your experience in plain black and white.
If you are going for the uber high end sales job. You will probably want to use a combination of skills and chronological. Highlight those skills, but also highlight that experience, then go above and beyond and highlight your accomplishments while getting that experience.
You know how to make sales because you have done it over and over again in all of these different circumstances. We know you will sell yourself during the interview, but let that resume give you a head start.
If you are a realtor or another professional sales person you will probably have business cards and web pages with your photo plastered all over them. Never the less, leave the picture off for the sales resume.
You could appear vain or it could cause liability or possible discrimination issues for the interviewer. Flash that smile at the interview, but let your accomplishments speak for themselves. Put your best foot forward on your resume for sales associate.
Medical Assistant Resume
The duties of a medical assistant are many. You often the front line at most doctor offices and clinics. So obviously good people skills are a must. Having compassion and pleasant bed side manner go a long way too.
Some job requirements include:
- Greeting Patients
- Updating Records
- Filing Records
- Working With Insurance Forms
- Medical Coding
- Making Appointments
- Contacting Hospitals
- Contacting Labs
- Taking Medical Histories
- Explaining Treatments
- Performing Lab Tests
- Collecting Samples
- Taking and Recording Vitals
- Administering Medications
You are pretty much the person who does everything. You want to make sure that your medical assistant resume not only highlights your education and work experience, but your skills and knowledge of common medical assistant tasks. Everyone in the clinical setting is busy and they want people on board who can do what needs to be done and do it correctly.
Some medical assistant resume examples would include a chronological resume where you start with contact info, then a solid objective aimed at the job in mind. Then highlight your clinical skills and then your experience. You have the skills to get things done and the experience to back it up. This is another popular job that has a medical assistant resume template on Word.
Being a receptionist always looks fun, but it can also be a lot of stress and a lot of responsibility. You need to be able to greet people and answer the phone, all the while keeping things organized and not let anything slip through the cracks.
Besides excellent people skills and phone skills being able to juggle many tasks and prioritize are important. It’ also useful to have a cool head and not get stressed when too much is going on at the same time. When you are a receptionist this happens just about always.
Having a good command of office skills is also a must if you are a receptionist. Some entry level receptionist may just answer the phone and greet new customers, but the vast majority have to juggle loads of office work as well.
Having solid computer skills, including the ability to type, 10 key and use MS Office are beyond valuable. Filing, records management, and using a database are super desirable attributes. Knowing your way around a spreadsheet is invaluable, especially if you can create a spreadsheet using functions.
Being organized and having great written and oral skills are also good skills to have if you are a receptionist. The best way to impress your potential employer with your communication and organization skills is to let them shine on your resume.
A great way to not get hired is to have a resume that is unorganized or hard to follow. The combination resume is a great choice for highlighting your best skills. Start out with your contact info, then give a clear job objective, and list your best skills. Then move on to employment history, education and any other skills that you think are important.
A common receptionist job is the dental receptionist. You can cater your dental receptionist resume to fit the job, by including information on medical and dental terminology and medical billing, along with insurance filing experience. No matter what type of receptionist position you can create or find a receptionist resume sample to fit your needs.
Certified Nursing Assistants are the backbone of hospitals and the lifeblood of assisted living facilities. There is also a huge demand for CNA’s with the aging baby boomer population. People are living longer, but might need extra assistance as the years pass.
Being a CNA not only requires a heart of gold, but you have to be a hard worker and deeply care about the welfare of others. If you work in an assisted living facility thinking of the residents as real people and the facility as their home is the attitude to have.
Becoming a CNA involves taking a test and working a certain amount of CNA hours. Once you get your state license it is time to land that all important first job. This is where your CNA resume comes in.
CNA Skills Required Include:
- Medical Terminology
- Medical Records
- Diagnostic Testing
- Patient Care
- Patient Safety
- Monitoring Vital Signs
- Administering Medications
- Understanding and adhering to HIPAA Regulations
For a CNA resume sample a combination resume is a great choice. First list your contact information, then your CNA objective, then your nursing skill set, then list professional experience, education and certifications. Like all smart resume makers try to play on your strengths and downplay perceived weaknesses.
Many nursing professionals have started out as CNAs and then moved into other nursing positions. It can be a great stepping stone because you get on the job training and can get hours towards your clinical work while getting paid.
Some super responsible assisted living facility administrators even get CNA certified so that they can understand the requirements and work of their staff. These are few and far between, but it does happen. If you are a CNA or an aspiring CNA thank-you for the dignity and grace you bestow on those in need of care.
A Resume Generator Can Speed Things Up
We have gone over some of the main types of resumes along with some tips for making your skills stand out and tailoring your qualifications for the job at hand. We also have talked about templates and the convenience of using Word for that perfect example of your skills and experience.
Another tool that can really make your life easier is a an online resume generator or resume creator. If you do a search for either of those terms you will find many choices to choose from.
Beware that some of the high ranking generators are actually spammy sites trying to confuse you and get you to click on ads. You can tell which ones these are because once you fill out the sample it will be difficult to decide where to click to print or save the copy.
Although, it will be simple to inadvertently click on an ad and be taken to another page with a paid resume tool. If you run across one of these just move on to a different one that is actually legitimate.
Cvmaker actually seems pretty legitimate it actually allows you to fill in your information. Including the following information.
- Basic Information
- Work Experience
It also gives you a choice to add a new section. Once you have filled out all of the chosen fields, you can hit the preview button and choose between. Different styles, which include the following.
Then Cvmaker puts a bow on it and allows you to save and download your new generated piece of art. It only allows you to download your work in a PDF or HTML, and you do need to register to use the site. As of this time it appears to be free.
The goal of most websites is to make money. So if you want the convenience of a tool like this you may have to pay for it. Even if you have to pay a little these can still be good options for making a resume quick and dirty.