We tend to get a bit off track when preparing resumes. A Resume or CV (Curriculum Vitae) is a brief write up about you, the person applying for a job. After you have done a thorough 'Job Search' and found some openings that you like or some web based portals for posting your resume, let's get down to preparing a nice, simple and professional resume.
The main components of a standard resume can be divided into four to five segments i.e.:
1. Your name and address;
2. Your Experience;
3. Your Qualifications;
4. Your Extra-curricular interests; and
5. Your References
You can make an outline of the above segments and just fill in the details that you have about each segment. If you are fresh out of College or University then there would be nothing in experience or maybe just internships that you have done while studying.
You can also download some very useful templates from the Microsoft Online website for preparing resumes.
There are some do's and don'ts of resume writing that we can sum up as follows:
1. Write clearly and check your spellings;
2. Give a brief - 2 to 3 lines description of your skills where required;
3. Give a brief about your family profile e.g. married or single;
4. Your contact details include a valid email address;
5. Companies you have worked for or done internship at;
6. Add a cover letter once you have prepared the resume and attach it to it.
1. Do not be over descriptive about any aspect;
2. Do not use flowery or novel like language, keep it simple and elegant yet professional and objective;
3. Do not give addresses of your previous employers just the company names are sufficient;
4. Do not get overly technical in your description as your degree usually covers the technicalities that you have learnt;
5. Don't be over smart or cute - you should communicate professionalism.
Although there are no set formats for preparing resumes and it can be as flexible as you want it to be, just to give an idea, once you have filled in the segments, it should look something like this:
Name: Maria Khan
Address: 52/II, Kh-e-Hafiz, Phase V, DHA, Karachi, Pakistan
Phone No: +9221 1850890
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
1. XYZ Corporation - Manager - Business Development
April 2007-To Date
Responsible for marketing and promotion of products manufactured by the company. The job involves relationship building and marketing strategy development for the company. Also responsible for co-ordination with event management companies for promotional activities of the company.
2. ABC Company - Assistant Manager - Marketing
March 2005 - March 2007
Responsible for conducting market surveys and customer feedback for the products manufactured by the company and then propose the customer's requirements for inclusion in product updates.
3. Arme Company - Management Trainee
May 2005 - February 2005
As a fresh MBA joined the company for a one year Managment Trainee contract in the Market Research and Sales department.
4. Artech Company - Internship Trainee
June 2004 - August 2004
Five weeks internship training program with the marketing department of the company.
MBA Marketing with a GPA of 3.9 ABC University Karachi
BBA Marketing with a GPA of 3.6 ABC University Karachi
'A' Levels with Economics and Business Studies.
6-week Course in MS Excel from XYZ Institute
4-week Certification Program in Graphic Designing on PhotoShop.
Extra Curricular Activities:
Painting and sketching
Reading books and browsing the net
Available upon request
There are several very good resources on the internet where you can find very good templates and points that you can include in your resume. However, to keep it practical for our country and the practices followed here, it is better to prepare your resume in a way that is acceptable here.
Similarly, if you are planning to apply for some international position, modify your resume to include the requirements of that particular country.
You can always consult a senior or a relative for pointers in this regard.
And ... Don't forget the Cover Letter!!
A lot of people simply send a resume - that really doesn't go too well as it seems crude and unprofessional. A cover letter also conveys your writing capabilities, so make it professional and interesting.
Preparing resume does not need to be a tedious or stressful exercise as its just putting on paper what you have done with a bit of verve to make your services sell better.
Once you have sent your resume and received an interview call, it's time to prepare yourself well for the interview.
Here we have put together some pointers to help you for the big day ...