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Résumés Job Applications

What is a Résumé? A résumé or curriculum vitae (CV) is a summary of your education, employment, skills and experiences. It is also a marketing document to promote your suitability to a prospective employer or recruitment agent. While there is no set format for résumés the following general list of headings demonstrates the basic type of information that is useful to employers. Getting started Before you start you might find it useful to look at the handouts “What Employers Are Looking For” and “Identifying Your Employability Skills”. You could also list facts about your education, employment, interests and achievements that are relevant to the job and the organisation that you are applying for. What information will be relevant to the organisation and the job? Read the job advertisement carefully, research the type of responsibilities required for the role and for the organisation (if you know the name of the organisation) and for the industry. If you are applying for several jobs, save appropriately named versions of your résumé rather than deleting information from one version. What sort of language should be used? Your language should reinforce your capabilities and be relevant to the industry or occupation that you are applying for. Use professional vocabulary e.g. ‘coordinated’ rather than ‘put together’ or ‘negotiated’ rather than ‘worked out’. A list of action verbs which may be useful can be found in the handout “Action Words”.  

TIPS Use meaningful headings for your information Relevant information for the position you are applying for goes first

The Careers Service | +61 2 4921 5588 | © 2011 The University of Newcastle, Australia | CRICOS provider number 00109J

Résumé Sections The following is only a guide. There is no correct way to write a résumé- choose headings, layout, content and ordering that presents your best case in respect to the particular job. Personal Details Separate headings are not required for each element. I.e. do not write name, address, phone numbers, fax, email, simply supply the information. Career Objective This is optional but can be very effective if it is clear, concise and targeted to the organisation. A career objective is usually 3-4 lines consisting of brief, factual sentences. It can:  give the employer an idea of your aspirations and motivate them to read the rest of your résumé  highlight 1 or 2 competencies that you can bring to the position  make you look focused and enthusiastic Another place for this information is in the cover letter. Education/Qualifications Include:  Date/s and qualification (full title, include majors) on first line, university/institution (full title) on second line  Overall academic results e.g. distinction or credit average (optional)  Academic awards or achievements Other optional inclusions are:  major projects  thesis topics Do not list subjects; rather, attach a copy of your academic transcript. Professional Experience If your experience/employment is course related you can target the heading e.g. Public Relations Experience or Teaching Experience Professional Experience may include:  employment Please consider the environment before printing this information sheet

 clinical/industrial placements  voluntary experience  relevant university projects. Do not just list these experiences - employers are more interested in what you did, how you did it (Including team context, equipment, methodologies) and the end result. Professional Skills Professional skills refer to your ability to do a particular job – e.g. IT skills, scientific skills, ability to use specialist equipment.  Put together a list of skills you have developed through your study that are relevant to your field of expertise.  Review your assignments, projects and research to start your list.  If your program of study involved practical work experience, clinical placements, field work or internships you will have a range of practical experience to draw on. Professional skills can be listed separately or included as part of your skills section (see below) Professional Development  List any relevant short courses or conferences you have attended.  Give the year, the institution and the location. Professional Membership/s  List relevant Professional Association/s and your membership status e.g. student, associate. Other Professional headings might include:  Publications, Conferences, Exhibitions, Projects,  Personal or Professional Highlights/Achievements,  Areas of Knowledge

Employment/ Experience (if not related to professional experience) There are different ways you can head these experiences, for example, if all of the employment is customer service oriented, you could make the heading "Customer Service Employment". When describing your experiences some general points to consider are;  job title/position (full title) on first line (in bold).  company name on second line.  give a brief description of the company (size, location, type of business).  indicate on what basis you were employed (e.g. FT, PT, casual, voluntary, placement).  give the dates you were with the organisation (Month Year – Month Year).  list your key specific responsibilities, starting each with an active verb e.g. conceptualise, initiate, manage, produce, develop, test, provide, present.  avoid copying the Duty Statement in full – it is too general and does not clarify your individual responsibilities. List your achievements – outline your personal accomplishments and contributions to the position or organisation e.g. what you improved, provide the outcomes achieved, skills you developed, positive feedback or awards received. Try to be original but truthful.  do not invent responsibilities you didn't have, but don't leave out important facts.  tailor each résumé so your relevant experience is given suitable emphasis according to the vacancy or organisation you are applying to.

Employment History Examples Compare the following descriptions of a position in a Pizza franchise (same person, same position). Which candidate would you be more likely to contact for an interview?

TIP Example 1 2002 - 2006

Pizza to Go Duties  Telephone customer service  Complaints handling  Stock control  Supervisory duties

The Careers Service | +61 2 4921 5588 | © 2011 The University of Newcastle, Australia | CRICOS provider number 00109J

Consider your audience: If you are applying for a professional position, write all information in a professional manner

Please consider the environment before printing this information sheet

Example 2 December 2002 - March 2006

Shift Supervisor Pizza to Go, Hamilton Small franchise with 15 regular staff, operating in a competitive location

Responsibilities  Supervised up to 25 staff, including permanent and casual staff  Coordinated allocation of up to 500 deliveries per shift to drivers  Trained and supervised staff in telephone and personal customer service  Supervised quality control of food products, including storage and transport  Monitored sales targets and motivated staff to exceed targets  Monitored customer feedback and recommended appropriate action as appropriate  Managed staff performance and reward system Achievements  Promoted from Telephone Customer Service Assistant on delivery hot line within 6 Months of commencement  Designed and implemented a staff and customer feedback system which was adopted by the parent company for implementation in over 30 franchises in NSW  Regularly exceed shift sales targets, as evidenced by promotion and staff training responsibilities  Won a staff competition to devise and name a new pizza Skills, Competencies, Transferable Skills Summary A skills section or summary provides the employer with a quick snapshot of your key skills relevant to the position or organisation. Identify and list in priority order your key 4-6 skills, concentrating on professional skills to match the vacancy. Each skill should have a brief heading followed by your evidence of the claim. For example: Written Communication skills – developed at university through writing complex technical reports during my nutrition and dietetics degree. Each skill you list must be:  Credible -there is a match with the work or study you have done  Specific - communication skills’ is too broad, try a specific aspect of communication such as  ‘Negotiation ’  Demonstrable - you must be able to show an example in your portfolio or talk about your claim concisely and confidently at interview The skills section may include:  Generic skills, e.g. leadership, research skills  Relevant IT skills e.g. competence in Microsoft Office packages.  Fluency in written and spoken English, Vietnamese, Japanese, Greek Awards, voluntary/community work or leadership positions held. These may be in any area: the arts, sport, educational or community activities, both on or off campus. The Careers Service | +61 2 4921 5588 | © 2011 The University of Newcastle, Australia | CRICOS provider number 00109J

Interests List 2-3 interests or social activities that demonstrate a balanced and active life. Referees Follow advertised application requirements. Referees;  can be professional, academic or personal.  should be current, and be able to comment on your workplace or university performance. Ensure referee contact details and relationship to you is made clear in the résumé. Final Tips  Make your résumé easy to read. Keep your résumé simple, structured, succinct and relevant to the employer.  Positioning of information is importantput the most relevant information first!  Formatting. Avoid the use of overcrowding, too much bolding, or different fonts. Use lots of white space and maintain a consistent style with bullet points, font, spacing and indents.  The recommended fonts are Times New Roman or Arial 12 font  Check for errors  Have your résumé checked by someone else! The Careers Service offers a résumé checking service. See our website for details Please consider the environment before printing this information sheet

Resume Info Sheet  


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