How to build a resume that stands out?
Updated: Jun 19, 2020
Internships, leadership positions, college apps.... Why does every single one of these opportunities ask for my resume? What should I include on my resume and how could a resume be effective? Well, today we will talk about how to build a concise but unique resume that will help you stand out!
1. Use a Resume Builder
As useless and cliche as this sounds, resume builder could actually help you a lot in terms of formatting, spacing, and aesthetic. Simply sign up for an account and pick the style that you like. The resume you get will look much better and more professional that if you use a google doc. Here are a few websites that you could check out:
2. Decide the different sections on your resume
Typical components include:
Awards and Honors
Skill sets and qualities
Feel free to add or leave out any sections, however, make sure your entire resume is cohesive and have a common theme that fits the needs of your employers. Don't forget to include your name, contact information, and ways that the employer could contact you.
Again, a resume builder could help you organize these different sections in the way you would like. Remember, when you are listing your experiences/education background, they should be listed with reverse chronological order.
3. Activities/Awards--what should I include?
After deciding the different sections, it is time to add certain accomplishments onto the resume. You might be wondering now: what kind of work experience should I include? What if I don't have anything impressive to say?
Well, the pro advice is to include every single one of these experience, whether trivial or influential, on the resume. Why? Because you will be giving your resume to a lot of different employers and they will have various needs. So you should always include each and every skills that you have and edit the resume in order to cater your employer's needs. This can be done by saving your resume as a document and update it regularly.
4. Elaboration--long or short?
Now that you have all the layouts set, what about the specific elaborations for each of these experience? Well, you should definitely mention the quantitative achievements.
For example, "I am the president of XX club with 300+ members. I hosted events with 100+ attendees and fundraised over 1000 dollars" is better than "I am the president of XX and manage the board, we have various events such as..."
The rule of thumb here is to showcase your leadership experience and qualities that differentiate you from others. So make sure to highlight that through numbers. In addition, be concise and clear about your accomplishments, do not exaggerate or be super vague.
Aim for 1-3 sentences/bullet points for each elaboration. You could also attach relevant hyperlinks.
5.Supplement--are they necessary?
The supplement here refers to your personal portfolio. These portfolio could be your github account demonstrating your coding ability; or it could be a website with all of your graphic designs. It is highly recommended that you attach a supplement if the position that you apply to has a very specific skill requirement. Even if the job description doesn't ask you to attach one, it is always a good idea to submit a supplement/portfolio because this is what makes you stand out.
You should always keep track of your work so that it will be easier if a portfolio is needed someday in the future.
And that's it for how to build your resume! Good luck to whatever you are applying to and stay tuned for our next blog!