Navigating the resume-writing process? Start with Fiverr’s Expert Guide on essential steps to writing a successful resume. Gear up, and this concise guide will turn your CV into a job magnet!
Essential Steps to Writing a Successful Resume: Fiverr’s Expert Guide
Step1: Have All The Information You Need At Your Fingertips
To create an effective resume, it is important to be prepared by having the necessary information readily available.
- Notable accomplishments from previous positions.
- Your skills encompass a range of core abilities, those acquired through training or education, and technical capabilities.
- The requested information includes details about past employers, such as employment dates, work location, job title, and responsibilities.
- Examples of qualifications include university degrees, certifications, and licenses.
It is recommended to have these details readily available for the resume writing process to save time and minimize interruptions.
Step2: Define Your Resume Format
To start your resume, open a new document in a word processor like Microsoft Word, Google Docs, or Apple Pages. Next, adhere to these recommended resume formatting guidelines.
- To adjust your page, select US Letter size and portrait orientation.
- It is important to have consistent margins of ½”–1” on your page’s left and right sides.
- When choosing a font for a resume, selecting one that is professional and easy to read is recommended. Arial, Helvetica, Ubuntu, Roboto, and Overpass are all suitable options.
- To optimize legibility, it is recommended to utilize appropriate font sizes. Typically, the standard text should range from 11 to 12 pt, whereas section headings should fall within the 14 to 16 pt range.
- Choose a comma strategy and apply it consistently in a list, as both methods are correct.
- Maintaining uniform text spacing is important as it can affect the hiring manager’s attention. It is recommended to use one space after each period and ensure consistent spacing between bullet points and paragraphs.
- Consistency in capitalising words is recommended, including department titles such as IT, Finance, Legal, etc. This can help the reader easily identify and distinguish these words.
- Maintaining consistent tab, bullet, and line alignment throughout the document is recommended. Aligning bullet points to the left instead of indenting them can increase the information on the page and improve readability when reading online.
- Please remember to use a period at the end of each sentence. Depending on your preference, you can include or omit periods at the end of bullet points.
- Limiting your resume to one page is recommended for those with less than 7-10 years of relevant job experience. If you have significant experience within the field, you may extend your resume to a maximum of two pages.
- For a two-page resume, it is recommended to include page numbers such as “1/2” or “2/2” to indicate the correct order and ensure no pages are missing during the review.
Step3: Pick The Right Resume Format
When creating a resume, one can select from three primary formats: reverse chronological, functional or skills-based, or a combination.
The appropriate format to choose depends on the job you’re pursuing and your level of expertise.
i. Reverse Chronological
The reverse chronological resume format is widely used and effective for individuals with significant relevant experience. It presents work experience and qualifications in descending order, listing the most current achievements or roles.
The skills-based format may be a suitable option for individuals who lack relevant job experience as a student or recent graduate or for those transitioning to a new career.
In contrast to the chronological format, the skills-based format prioritizes listing relevant skills.
A combination resume can benefit individuals with diverse skill sets, especially when applying for roles that require experience in multiple areas and wish to showcase this on their resume.
Step4: Add A Resume Header
A recommended addition to a resume is a main header at the top of the page to highlight essential details for potential employers.
The resume header should include your essential information above all else.
- First and last names
- Email address
- Phone number
In addition, it may be beneficial to consider including the following:
- Please provide the URLs to your online portfolio or website.
- Your LinkedIn profile URL
- Your mailing address
The header may also contain a resume headline and a summary of your experience, like “Experienced Business Copywriter” or “Law Student with High Ratings as an Intern.”
Step5: Add Your Contact Information
Including your contact information in your resume’s header is essential. It provides hiring managers with crucial details to arrange the next steps with you if your work experience and skills meet their expectations.
It is important to verify your contact information several times to ensure accuracy.
It is recommended to use a professional email address, such as one associated with your university or containing your full name.
Regarding job applications, it is unnecessary to provide your birth date unless stated in the job description. Similarly, including a photograph is only mandatory in certain industries or if the job posting explicitly asks for it.
Step 6: Start With A Resume Summary Or Resume Objective
The top section of a resume, located beneath the name and subtitle, typically includes a summary or objective statement.
A resume summary is a summary of an individual’s professional experience, typically consisting of 2-3 sentences. It is recommended that it includes certain information.
- Please provide information on your occupation and length of work experience.
- Highlighting a couple of significant achievements or primary duties.
- Please explain your career aspirations and the specific type of organization you are interested in.
Typically, a resume summary is appropriate for most situations unless you are a recent college graduate or transitioning careers; in this case, a resume objective may be more fitting.
A resume objective is your resume’s goal. Its purpose is to convey why you want to enter a new field. Keep it short – 2-3 sentences max. Draw on your qualifications or skills and explain how to use them to help the company. This is similar to a resume summary.
Step7: List Your Work Experience And Key Achievements
Work experience is a crucial component of a resume, as it provides an opportunity to showcase past accomplishments and job duties.
Consider formatting your work experience in the following manner when presenting it.
i. Job Title
The header at the beginning of each entry is a tool for the hiring manager to quickly assess if the candidate possesses the necessary experience for the job.
ii. Company Name, Location, And Description
It is recommended to mention your current or past employer and their location and provide a brief overview of their speciality if they are not widely recognized.
iii. When You Were Employed
Including each company’s employment duration is recommended, using the format mm/yyyy, as recruiters and employers often request. This can be beneficial for those utilizing digital resume analysis software.
iv. Accomplishments Or Duties
The work experience section contains important information that can be focused on either accomplishments or duties, depending on relevance to the position. Typically, individuals in the same role share the same responsibilities.
Consider the role of a Sales Manager, whose routine responsibilities comprise of:
- Cold-calling to generate leads
- Managing current company clients
Listing individual accomplishments can help one stand out.
A Sales Manager may consider prioritizing the following accomplishments:
- Sales team KPIs were consistently exceeded by 25% or more for four consecutive months.
- Sales totaled over $27,000 within a one-month time frame.
Suppose you have worked in a field with limited opportunities for standing out, such as a warehouse. In that case, outlining your job duties rather than individual achievements may be more beneficial.
Step8: Highlight Your Top Skills
The skills section of your resume should showcase your main abilities, giving employers a quick snapshot of your hard and soft skills to determine if you are the ideal candidate for the job.
Hard skills are gained through specific training, workshops, job experience, or education, encompassing the necessary abilities to operate job-specific equipment.
A list of specific hard skills includes:
- HTML / CSS
- Content Management Systems (CMS)
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- UX / UI Design
Soft skills are a type of competency linked to one’s personality and can be enhanced through routine interactions with colleagues or job responsibilities. Time management is an organizational skill that corporations typically look for.
Additional soft skills that are frequently found include:
- Critical observation
Incorporate technical and interpersonal skills on your resume to showcase your abilities.
You should showcase your skills beyond the skills section of your resume by providing relevant examples in your work experience entries. Soft skills can be challenging to evaluate without context and may not fully demonstrate your competency to potential employers.
One way to indicate your skill level for each skill is by using labels such as “beginner”, “intermediate”, “proficient”, or “advanced”. Another option is to use a visual approach, such as a skill bar or graph.
Step9: List Your Education
Including your education information on your resume is important, and it should be listed in order of highest qualification, such as a university degree or relevant certification.
List your educational qualifications in reverse-chronological order, omitting high school if you have a university degree and indicating completed credits if you are currently in college.
Including relevant courses, honor’s, or awards, such as being on the Dean’s List, is important.
Including relevant extracurricular activities can enhance your resume.
When crafting your resume, consider placing your education information first if you lack work experience. Otherwise, showcasing your employment history before your educational background is recommended.
Step10: Add Other Important Resume Sections
In addition to the necessary sections, including supplementary information on your resume may be advantageous to increase your competitive edge.
Listing the ability to speak multiple languages on a resume can be beneficial, as it may be useful to the hiring manager in the future, even if the current position doesn’t require them.
When including languages in your resume, it is important to specify your level of proficiency, ranging from native to basic.
ii. Hobbies And Interests
Consider adding a hobbies and interests section to your resume if available. This section can showcase your individuality and may include activities such as playing sports or engaging in artistic pursuits. It could also provide common ground for discussion during an interview.
iii. Volunteering Experience
Individuals who volunteer during their free time without expecting compensation may seek more fulfilment in their work beyond financial compensation.
Research indicates that including volunteer work on a resume can increase the likelihood of being hired, especially for individuals lacking professional experience, such as students.
iv. Certifications And Awards
May I inquire if you possess any accolades or industry certifications?
When creating your resume, it is acceptable to include any relevant accolades that pertain to the job you are applying for.
Individuals in creative or academic professions may have their work published online, which can be included as links on their resumes to provide additional information about their accomplishments to hiring managers.
Engaging in extracurricular projects, whether academic or professional, can demonstrate a strong dedication and passion for one’s field.
Including information about noteworthy projects you have worked on or are currently working on in your free time can be beneficial to impress hiring managers.
Step11: Complete Your Resume With A Cover Letter
Submitting a resume and a cover letter is typically required when applying for a job.
A cover letter serves as a statement to the hiring manager, providing a brief overview of why the applicant is a good match for the position.
One Possible Format To Use For A Cover Letter Is As Follows.
1. Introduce Yourself And Make A Good First Impression
Please provide an overview of your work experience and explain your interest in the organization you are applying for. Additionally, highlighting 1-2 notable professional accomplishments can help create a positive first impression.
2. Describe How You Would Thrive In This Role
Identify the three main qualifications listed in the job posting, and then provide a separate paragraph for each qualification detailing how you fulfil the requirements.
3. Conclude Your Cover Letter And Say Thanks
Thank you for considering my cover letter. If you require further information or want to schedule a meeting, please contact me via phone or email.
After completing your resume, it is advisable to proofread it to ensure accuracy. Detecting errors in your writing can be challenging, as small mistakes can easily go unnoticed.
It is important to thoroughly review your work for any spelling or grammatical errors by reading it multiple times.
It is recommended that someone proofread your work and utilize software like Grammarly, Hemmingway, or Microsoft Word’s spell checker to detect errors.
Find Proofreading Services By Professional Editors
When reviewing your resume, make sure to proofread it carefully.
- Ensure that your contact information is accurate.
- Doesn’t contain sensitive information
- The document has a length of 1-2 pages.
- The text is designed with legibility, featuring font sizes larger than 10pt and ample spacing.
- Your resume design should be professional and appropriate for the job you seek.
- Includes all relevant sections
- Include quantifiable achievements in the job experience section.
FAQs About ‘Essential Steps To Writing A Successful Resume’:
1. What Does ‘Essential Steps to Writing a Successful Resume’ Mean?
This phrase refers to the critical actions or elements that should be incorporated into a resume to increase effectiveness and appeal to potential employers.
2. Who Needs to Know These Essential Steps?
Whether you’re a recent graduate or an experienced professional, understanding these steps can significantly improve your chances of making a good impression with your resume.
3. How Can These Steps Improve My Resume?
The essential steps guide you to strategically present your skills, experiences, and achievements to capture a recruiter’s attention and portray you as a suitable candidate.
4. Are These Steps Relevant to All Industries and Roles?
Absolutely. While specifics may vary, these steps are fundamental and can be adapted to suit any industry or role.
5. Can I Use These Steps to Revamp an Existing Resume?
Yes, you can. These steps can help you identify areas for improvement in your existing resume and guide you in making necessary updates.
6. What Makes a Resume ‘Successful’?
A ‘successful’ resume effectively showcases your skills and experiences, is tailored to the job description, and passes through Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) to secure job interviews.
7. Are These Steps Useful For Writing Cover Letters as Well?
While some principles can be applied to cover letters, it’s important to note that resumes and cover letters serve different purposes. Specific tips for writing cover letters may differ.
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