While we prefer to make appointments for you, resumes are almost always necessary. Since the first impression that a resume makes on a potential employer is a critically important one, dmDickason strongly recommends that the resume follow a prescribed format.
Using the directions (below) and guidelines of “Resumes for Results”, begin the rough draft on your resume. When you are finished, please don’t hesitate to show it to / discuss it with your Executive Recruiter. Once both of you are completely satisfied that it is correctly done, you will have it properly typed and printed on good quality paper in off-white, oyster white or pale buff. One of these conservative colors will help it stand out from those printed on standard white paper.
Make sure that your resume is error free. No misspelled words. Always do a “spell check” before you print. It might also be a good idea for your educator, parent or recruiter to double check for good grammar and complete thoughts and sentences. Margin justify the text (it looks cleaner).
Use the following outline to set up your resume (also see enclosed samples):
List your full name, with complete first name and middle initial. Do not use a nickname. If you are writing a resume that you intend to submit to your Executive Recruiter for his/her use, please eliminate your name, address and phone numbers altogether.
dmDickason does not recommend the use of an objective unless you are absolutely confident that your objective closely resembles the company’s, and only if your objective also satisfies the essential requirements of the open position (employer). If you must use a “Job Objective”, list the positions that you are qualified. What would you really like to be doing? Where would you like to be five (5) years from now? Remember to be realistic and don’t make it “me oriented”; rather, describe your objective in a manner so that an employer can see the benefits in hiring you over someone with the same experience. Keep in mind, potential employers really do not care what your career objective is, unless it can/will also completely satisfy the reasons why they are filling this position.
Summary (“Career Summary” or “Summary of Qualifications”)
A brief general summary emphasizes the strong points of your background. This paragraph also gives you an excellent opportunity to summarize the education, experience and skills that you have, that closely resembles the job requirements (information that you may have gleaned from research, or quite possibly, a copy of the job description that you received from the employer (or your Recruiter) earlier).
A quick glance gives the employer an immediate answer as to whether or not you are qualified for a position (or not). It gives an employer a quick thumbnail sketch of your background, education, skills and/or experience and, invites them to read further for more detail. If this section contains key words, phrases or descriptions that closely resemble the requirements and expectations of the open position, your resume will undoubtedly be read in more detail. If this summary does not have key words, phrases or descriptions similar to those required of this position, the employer will most likely not read your resume any further than this section.
Although this comes at the beginning of your resume, it will be the last thing that you write. Information in this Summary section is normally drawn from the body of the resume, a good deal of it from the lead lines, and from lifting key words and phrases from the text. These thoughts truly emphasize the most important aspects of your experience and how they directly apply to this opening.
Put your highest education first, including degree obtained, school and location. List down to, and including high school. If you are a college graduate, or have been employed for ten years or longer, high school information is not necessary. Be sure to list any relevant and completed special courses, degrees, honors, awards or certificates you have taken and/or received. Explain them. If you are proud of your GPA (grade point average), and it is over 3.0, you may want to list both your cumulative GPA and your GPA in your “major” area of study. Also be sure to indicate if you graduated Magna or Suma Cum Laude, plus your class ranking if in the top 10%. If you have been out of school for several years, however, your GPA is probably not important anymore, so eliminate it.
Note: Your education should always be listed before work experience if your education is more significant than your work experience. However, if your educational achievements are secondary in relevance and/or importance to your accomplishments in your current or past employment, list your work experience before your education. If your educational background is secondary to your work accomplishments, the space provided for this section can be shortened in order to give more space to your employment history. If your education in no way enhances your “total picture”, leave this section out all together. Of course, if your educational background in stronger than your employment history, this space can also be expanded.
List the last ten years of positions you have held, starting with the most recent and working your way backwards. List all previous positions until at least a ten-year span is covered. If ten years are covered, simply summarize your prior experience in the next section entitled “Remarks”.
For each position, give exact name of the company, their address (city and state) and give the exact dates (month and year) of employment. Do not forget to show the months, as well as the years. By not indicating the beginning and ending months of employment, it gives the impression that you may be attempting to gloss over (potentially) long periods of unemployment, or, that you are attempting to stretch the actual period of employment. For most employers, eliminating the months of employment indicates a possible red flag (problem).
Explain what major duties you performed there, outstanding achievements and specific (major) responsibilities. Remember that future employers are looking for people that will (and want to) make a difference to their company. Employers are looking for people that have a proven or demonstrated history of achievement and accomplishments, rather than a history of just showing up for work and taking up space. Be sure to list and explain how you saved your last employer time or money, list special accomplishments in which you were recognized. What special skills, training, recognitions can you bring to the table? How will the employers business benefit and grow by hiring you? Why would this employer want to hire you over someone else with the same experience? Your resume must literally motivate the reader to pick up the phone and call you in for a personal interview because they can see the direct benefit (to them) of hiring you over others with the same kind of experience.
Do not list part time jobs unless you are a recent graduate and the history of these part time jobs are pertinent to the position you are applying.
If currently employed, that position should be listed first, with the month and year that you started work to “present”. If you are presently employed, it is possible to avoid listing the name and address of your current employer by indicating “Confidential – currently employed”. For additional tips on handling this situation, please consult with your Executive Recruiter.
Also could be called “OTHER” or “ADDITIONAL INFORMATION”. “Remarks” or “Other” could include any other pertinent information regarding business affiliations, specific abilities, specific computer languages, software or hardware, special skills or experience, please mention all foreign languages that you speak and the proficiency that you read, write and speak them.
Do Not Include in Your Resume
You must not include ANY information having to do with your:
- National origin (nation where you were born)
- Do not attach a pictures of yourself
- Mention of any physical or mental handicap or disability
- Health related comments (good or bad)
- Veteran status
- Comments about your gender (male, female)
- Comments about your sex or sexual orientation
- Remarks about your marital status, children
- Information of a religious, political or ethnic nature
dmDickason Recruiters (as are all employers) are required to strike any and all illegal information regarding the above topics from your resume. Most resumes containing any of the above illegal information will either be returned or not accepted.
Do not list references. If your resume includes references, or a references section with the words “references available upon request”, take it off. This section is not necessary. Employers will naturally request your references when / if they need them. Besides, this section only takes up more valuable space that can be used to sell your accomplishments, education and special talents.
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