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How to build a resume


All of us at some point in time have had to build a resume or cv. Despite the innumerable number of blogs and posts available regarding how to build a resume, I found that many of the resumes I received as part of application had a lot to improve. This prompted me to pen this article.

Resume building has 3 aspects to it

  • Content
  • Styling
  • Delivery

The most important part of the resume is the content. The golden rule to be followed here is – deliver content tailored to your audience. Your audience in this case is the person to whom you are going to send the resume. But its always a recruiter right ? Wrong! Every recruiter is not same and you need to tailor your content to suit your recruiter.

How do you go about doing it ?
First list down everything you have done in your life till date – start from the running race you won in your kindergarten to your last degree or job. Sounds silly ? Still do it.

The next step is to write down what your recruiter is looking for ? For a minute put yourself in his shoes and imagine what all will you look for in a candidate applying to that role. Try to provide complete and comprehensive information. Providing more information is not going to reduce your chances, but not providing enough information might.

Next pick every point you think is a demonstration of an ability or expertise that the recruiter is looking for. In case you have plenty of points still, prioritize and remove points that seem insignificant or irrelevant.

I have come across many a resumes, where the candidate forgets to mention the year of graduation or college name or the number of people involved in the project etc. This gets me suspicious, because I start to think that there is something fishy and hence he has avoided mentioning this. Giving a recruiter more information is not going to reduce your chances, but not giving sufficient information might.

Now you have got the content for your resume.

The next part is no less important than the first one!

When you put yourself in the shoes of the recruiter what did you see ? Plenty of applications to choose from! Unless you are applying for a very specialised job or you are applying to a company where no one wants to work, the recruiter will have plenty of resumes to choose from. Hence he will be looking for a spark in your resume that will catch his eye. This spark will move you resume from the reject bundle to the shortlisted bundle! Inorder to do this you need to make his job as easy as possible. Dont make him search, give it to him. Sounds easy ? Its actually not that easy!

Ever wondered who uses all the formatting option that Microsoft Word provides ?? Work on your resume and you will understand. Use styling options judiciously to deliver the content you have prepared in the best manner possible. Use tables, underline or bold the headings, use font size hierarchy ,use colors. You can build separate sections in the resume and help the recruiter quickly navigate to the section he is interested in.

The last and final step in the process of resume making is delivery.

Make your resume easily accessible to your recruiter, and also make it available in different platforms. If you are applying through a company website, then you will have to fill up a questionnaire, if you are uploading your resume or sending it via email, then have a pdf ready, create a profile on Linkedin and keep it uptodate – this helps recruiters see your resume in a format they are used to. Other interesting resumes I have come across are websites built on Wix or a similar platform or you can have a slide share presentation. Here is where your creativity comes out! If you are aspiring to develop apps – build your resume as a mobile app. If you are aspiring to be a marketer – make it a slide show on slide share or create a video resume.

The aim of a resume is to help the other person understand you! Hence put your best foot forward!


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