Resume! If there is anything constant in your ever-changing work life, it is this document. You may be at the top-most ladder of your organisation and may not need your experience certificates of the past. Even references would cease being important but resumes – now that is one thing you would never want to mess up. And the first resume is like your first kiss, wherein your visual and theoretical experiences or learning suffer a stroke. Writing a first resume is like writing your first alphabet. Remember that cluelessness and apprehension when you wrote your first “A”. What if you wrote it wrong? Wouldn’t that mean the teacher would dislike you? Well, the teacher may not dislike you for a wrong alphabet but your interviewers are highly likely to give you a pass if your resume is not well written. Agreed, that you don’t have any work experience but that doesn’t mean your resume has to be blank. You cannot make a multi-coloured resume but that doesn’t call for a bland one either. Your first resume must be professional and crisp yet attractive. And it can be, if you follow the tips as under.
Writing Your First Resume
Being a fresher doesn’t mean that your resume is just a paper that just lists the academic qualification that you have earned throughout your life. It still is a snapshot of you and your personality. Here are a few tips that would surely help you in writing your very first snapshot called resume.
Keep It Simple
Your resume should be distinguished with its simplicity and grace. You cannot make your resume like a Hawaii brochure to attract attention. It will only earn you a negative impression.
No, this is not Hollywood and you are not Reese Witherspoon. You can’t even think of a glossy, colored and scented paper for a resume unless you are applying for a media job. Stick to heavy and good-quality white A4 sheets.
A fresher resume must never be more than a page long. Remember, recruiters do not have time to spare on reading long resumes. They are on a look out of small and crisp resumes.
An effective resume is all about organisation and chronology. Since you are a fresher, you have to start with an objective/introduction followed by internship details and academic qualification. For experienced personnel, the objective may be skipped and the resume should directly start with jobs done in reverse chronological order.
No matter how small an experience, it always counts. Make sure you mention each of your internships, no matter how small, in your resume. Mention your part-time jobs as well.
Your achievements or accomplishments must follow the academic qualifications and should be grouped as “Achievements” and “Extra Curricular Activities”. Mention your academic and job-related accomplishments as achievements and other sports or non-voluntary work like youth committee etc under ECAs.
Never forget that a resume is the only way to impress the recruiter. Give them the numbers. If you were a good student then your grades and if you worked then your achievements quantified are a must on your resume.
Try not to get carried away with the stylish curves of “Monotype” or the funny grooves of “Comic Sans” fonts for regular jobs. Stick to basics like Arial and Verdana with a font size of 9-12 so that even the faxes look good.
Your recruiters are not looking for duties. They have duties and they are looking for active and goal-oriented people to perform these duties. So use words like “accomplished”, “attained” etc which show that you have actually done something.
Under no circumstance should you forge any details. Your crosschecking may reveal that and you may find yourself exposed and embarrassed.
Use references of people who know you personally like your teachers and HODs. Using a principal’s name may sound important but your lack of intimacy with her/him can backfire.