Frequently Asked Questions About Resume Writing

How long should a resume be?

Answer: Employers use the resume to get a quick glance at the skills and experience of a potential candidate. For entry-level jobs, applicants should make the resume one page in length. Anything longer may deter a hiring manager from looking over the resume. Applicants should include the most important and relevant information in a one-page resume. A career professional with extensive job experience may make a two-page resume.

How should I structure my resume?

Answer: Popular resume styles include chronological, functional, and CV. Most job applicants use the chronological resume style. A chronological resume lists work history and accomplishments in reverse chronological order with the most recent accomplishments at the top. A functional resume organizes information to display skill sets. Applicants with education or experience dissimilar to the position applied for may use a functional resume to show how their skills match the responsibilities of the job. A job seeker may use a CV, or Curriculum Vitae, to apply for a professional position, such as professor, doctor, lawyer, and teacher.

What information should I include in a resume?

Answer: The essential components of a resume include contact information, educational background, career objective, and work experience. A resume may also include skills and interests, earned credentials, and awards and honors.

What fonts are acceptable to use on a resume?

Answer: Allowable fonts for a resume include Times New Roman, Arial, Garamond, Tahoma, Calibri, and Verdana. An applicant should use 11 or 12-point font size on a resume.

How should I describe accomplishments on a resume?

Answer: Applicants should use short, actionable statements to describe accomplishments. Statements should show measurable results, such as increased sales revenue from $50,000 to $100,000 or improved office efficiency by 10%.

Should I include accomplishments from high school?

Answer: If an applicant does not possess relevant accomplishments from college or past jobs, then high school accomplishments may suffice. Job seekers may list accomplishments on sports teams and in extracurricular activities.

Should I list references on my resume?

Answer: Applicants generally do not need to list references on a resume. Typically, an employer will ask to see a list of references during the interview stage.

Should the resume use salary information?

Answer: No, an applicant should not include a salary history or salary requirements on a resume. Any salary discussion should take place during the interview process.