Effective Resumes

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Effective Resumes

By: Colin Ong TS

A resume is normally the first contact point between an employer and a job seeker. It serves the purpose of providing a summary of why a candidate is suitable for a job (cover-letter) and his relevant qualifications/experience.

In this article, advice about creating effective cover letters will be provided and followed by the rest of the resume.

An Effective Cover Letter:

An effective cover letter is a 1-page introduction of your resume that has the ultimate goal of helping the job seeker get the first interview from a job advertisement. This is easier said than done as HR Managers have to go through quite a number of job applications. If your cover letter is rather formulaic and your only concern is that the printing is smudge-free, then here are more useful tips:


Be careful to direct your resume to the right person. If you address the wrong person in your cover letter, you may not get a response. Along the same lines, quote the correct reference number that is highlighted in job advertisement and ensure that you have applied for the correct position that corresponds to your expertise.

Academic Qualifications:

In you cover letter, you should just state your highest relevant academic qualification. You need not get into the specifics like the grades of your final semester. An exception is if you have won an academic prize or attained a prestigious scholarship. The rest of your academic achievements can be placed after your cover letter.

Relevant Working Experience and Skills:

You can include a paragraph in your cover letter about how your relevant working experience will directly benefit the goals of the department. In this area you have to spend time researching about the company through the internet and offline materials.

Be A Team Player:

Your cover letter must not come across as an opportunity to highlight your achievements in isolation. You must communicate that you are a team player and are willing to undergo continual skills upgrading.

Overseas Travel:

With the current workplace interconnectivity, it will not be surprising if your job requires occasional overseas trip. If you are agreeable of this requirement, it will be appropriate if you state your willingness to travel overseas in the cover letter.

Do a Spell-Check:

Remember to run a spell-check to ensure that there are no grammatical mistakes in your cover letter. A good exercise is to print out a draft copy and scrutinize for mistakes.

Get that First Interview:

This point sounds rather superfluous but your cover letter has to help you get an interview. It will not help if you provide a wrong contact number or appear to be too busy to come for an interview.

Do not be critical:

Do not be critical about your previous employer or your previous work environment. It is more forward-looking and professional to explain about how your previous job has provided you with relevant working experience.

2) The Rest of Your Resume

State your Academic Qualifications in Chronological Order:

It is important to state your academic qualification in chronological order for ease of viewing. It is also optional to send photocopy of exam results. Your interviewer will request them during the interview.

State Relevant Training Courses:

It will be advantageous for you to state the relevant training courses that you have attended. This will signal to your prospective employer that you are proactive in upgrading your skills and directly improve the productivity of your organization.


Your choice of referees is crucial in providing extra information about your abilities. Remember to inform your referees that they may be called to furnish information. It is advisable to provide their email addresses if they are frequently outstation.

Broadcast your website:

You can provide the link to your personal website to add more information about yourself. An added benefit is that you can provide links from your site that you feel will help your boost your chances. A good example is to include your feature in the newspapers/magazines. However, your site should not be a replica of your resume.

About The Author

Colin Ong TS is the Managing Director of MR=MC Consulting (http://www.mrmc.com.sg) and the Founder of the 12n Online Professional Networking Community (http://www.mrmc.com.sg/12n)



rb5sigirl 24.09.2007. 18:07

I need advice on how to write an effective resume? I work in the nursing field. I've worked in Long Term Care for years. I want to change into a different area of nursing. How can I write an effective resume. Does anyone know of any good writers or companies. I need advice.


Admin 24.09.2007. 18:07

Go to microsoft.com, they have free templates you can download for resumes. All you have to do is fill in the blanks. (Microsoft word format)


rb5sigirl 24.09.2007. 18:08

I need advice on how to write an effective resume? I work in the nursing field. I've worked in Long Term Care for years. I want to change into a different area of nursing. How can I write an effective resume. Does anyone know of any good writers or companies. I need advice.


Admin 24.09.2007. 18:08

Go to microsoft.com, they have free templates you can download for resumes. All you have to do is fill in the blanks. (Microsoft word format)


omiej_88 31.05.2007. 07:25

How to write an effective resume and what are the entries that I should put into it? How can I write an effective resume to secure my desired part-time job in call center agency? Also, what are the entries that I should put in my resume (example name, address, educational attainment, etc.)?

If you don't mind, can somebody send me a sample resume? My e-mail is omiej88@hotmail.com. Your help will trully be appreciated. Thank you very much!


Admin 31.05.2007. 07:25

Go to the following search engines and type in the search words 'How to write a resume'




Peace and blessings!


someone 27.09.2012. 17:40

How to write a Effective Resume? Hi,
I've had an interview for some position in a company, please let me know how to write an effective resume for my interview?



Admin 27.09.2012. 17:40

Start by researching the companies that interest you. Next, read publications or websites directly related to your target industry. Are there particular requirements that are frequently mentioned? If so, use these requirements as keywords throughout your resume.
Detail your previous experience. Think about your background and past experiences. Take what you learned in business school and apply it to the job you seek. Emphasize relevant skills and related accomplishments.
If you have degrees, certifications, or specialized training, note it. Try to include any related unpaid work that you have done, such as internships.
Whatever you do, don't list your hobbies unless they directly apply. Concentrate only on what demonstrates your value; leave everything else out.
As you are writing, try not to use the same words over and over. Avoiding repetition will make your resume more exciting. Drop in some of the following action words to jazz things up a bit:

Next, make sure everything is neatly typed and spelled correctly. Your resume should be eye-catching without being flashy. Above all, it should be easy to read.

If you need ideas for layout and structure, find resume samples online or go to the library and study a book. Both outlets will offer many examples of professionally written resumes. (A great online place is: jobsearch.about.com)

When your resume is finished, read it over carefully and make sure that it properly demonstrates your value as an employee. If so, you have written an effective invitation to employers. All you need to do now is sit back and wait for the phone to ring.


ng g 08.01.2009. 09:14

How to prepare a Superb interesting Resume to promote myself ? i am a working adult with 10years experiences in logistic line , recent company no doing well in business , very scare of retrencement , who can helpme to prepare effective resume for myself..?

ng g

Admin 08.01.2009. 09:14

The best person to prepare an effective resume is...you! There are some wonderful tools and resources on the web that help you construct a professional and creative resume.

The best site I found was http://www.theresumesource.com. This site explains what should be in each section of your resume, provides a sample resume, and has a great list of descriptive words that help communicate your experiences.

Do not use a template. They are boring and everyone can tell that they are templates. I hope this helps you land a killer job!


?Charlayy? 18.05.2011. 01:14

How to write a resume for an internship? I'm working on a resume that I have to send out for internships. These internships are a part of my final year at college. I'm a journalism student and am applying to broadcast/tv internships.

I have experience and skills gained from my classes, and projects but don't have any formal job titles except for a reporter on the school paper. How would I go about making an effective resume with basically no previous employment in this area?


Admin 18.05.2011. 01:14

Here are some tips to help you boost your resume:

1. Maximize your experience. Add two or three bullet points for each position on your resume, detailing a few of your primary (and most impressive) responsibilities in the order that they apply to the position you?re seeking. You can also include volunteer work on your resume if it shows necessary skills. You?ll expand your credentials while also tailoring your experience to fit the job.

2. ?Past experiences? on your resume can include more than just previous jobs.

Detailing your proficiency in other areas, like specific computer programs or foreign languages, can add a lot of value to your resume. Even highlighting unrelated but important extracurricular activities on your resume can reflect your commitment to a goal ? plus, you never know when an employer might bond with you over a shared love of water-skiing!

3. Incorporating words or phrases from a job listing into your resume is a great way to catch prospective employers? eyes. If they?re looking for a ?hard-working team player,? you might mention in your resume that you thrive in ?team? environments and throw yourself into ?hard work.? You?ll leave your employers musing that they couldn?t have said it better themselves.

4. For job-seekers with little work experience, references can be a huge asset to your resume. References can attest to your dedication and drive, even if you haven?t had many chances to prove your abilities in a work environment.

Even if references aren?t required in your application, why leave them out? Consider including two or three references on your resume. It?s an added convenience, and proves you have people ready to vouch for your skills.

5. List activities, awards, or skills. Even if you haven?t used them in a professional setting, some activities and interests you take for granted might help you get an internship.

If you?ve taught yourself HTML or if you grew up speaking Spanish, remember that these skills can be very important for the right internship. If you?ve won a writing contest or an academic scholarship, use this section of your internship resume to show it off ? these extracurricular activities for your resume are proof that you are capable of handling the stress of competition!

5. Sell yourself! When writing a resume, you might not have the experience that other positions require, but you don?t have to apologize or sell yourself short. Even if you can list only a couple of past accomplishments on your resume, you can describe the skills you?ll bring to future positions.


remone 29.09.2011. 18:41

what are three characteristics of an effective cover letter? Name at least three characteristics of an effective cover letter.
Why is an effective cover letter important?
If you were to write a cover letter today, which of your skills would you highlight?
Name at least three characteristics of an effective resume.
If you have used a resume before, what will you do differently now as a result of this lesson?
Discuss what new concept or strategy that you learn during this lesson.


Admin 29.09.2011. 18:41

haha everest university


Erin 21.04.2009. 14:26

How to write a simple, yet professional resume? I'm in college and I've never written a resume before, and I'm applying for a job at a clothing store. Previous experience is cashier at a grocery store back in high school. Can you give me any tips on how to write an effective resume that looks professional?
And what should I put under the skills column?


Admin 21.04.2009. 14:26

Besides setting all margins to 1", the most important criteria for setting up a professional resume besides relevant text, is "scanability." Here are some helpful tips:

1. Place just below your identification header [your hame, address, phone, email address] any Conditional Warning Statement such as "Confidential Resume,"Do Not Contact Current Employer," etc.
2. Always fill-in an Objectives category [just below the Conditional Warning Statement] and make sure that he Objective will contribute to the profitability of your future employer;
3. Select a mono-type font such as Helvetica, Arial, Courier or Times Roman; do not select any cursive handwriting styles which cannot scanned;
4. Keep font sizes within a range of 10 to 12 pts.;
5. Avoid styling text with a justified alignment, keep it flushed left;
6. Instead of using tabs to set up blocked text entries, generate a table and use the column and row settings accordingly;
7. Do not place an i.d. picture anywhere on the resume, this is a major taboo due to discrimination issues;
8. Do not place any graphic text [saved as .gifs] onto the resume since it may be overlooked during the scanning phase;
9. List at the very end of the resume your interests which should include travel experiences, language skills, social interactions such as golf, team sports, tennis, etc.

In conclusion, the above helpful hints were designed to allow ease of scanning of your resume into PDF which can then be text captured for seach purposes by your potential employer. If the original resume was created in Word, WordPerfect or Mac Appleworks, it can be Saved As a PDF file which then can be saved as an email attachment. Otherwise, you can simply use a scanner and scan a hard copy of the resume and then save as a PDF file.

Failure to conform the resume to appropriate fonts and styles as outlined above will result in rejection of the resume simply due to the inability of the scanning device to properly index relevant resume entries.

Good luck!


YankeeFanatic 26.04.2010. 19:24

Do you need a cover letter for am online application? I applied for a job online, and they left a little box to copy-and paste your resume. They did not mention a cover letter. If I write an effective resume, and paste it in the box, do I need a cover letter as well? I listed my previous job experience and qualifications in the resume box. Do I need anything else on there?


Admin 26.04.2010. 19:24

Always try to apply for a job with a cover letter. Because most applicants don't bother, if you do, you'll be immediately considered for the job over those who didn't use a cover letter.

If there was only one spot to copy-and-paste, and it was meant for your resume, you can always paste your cover letter before the resume in the same box, as if it's one whole document.

Make sure that you decipher when the cover letter ends and where the resume begins, for instance this is what I do:

This is where my cover letter is:



Name (first line of my resume)
and so on

A cover letter isn't a recycled resume; it's a letter of interest. You say the title of the job you're applying for, your employment history - but only include job titles, company names, and lengths. Then your education. Then any specific skills the job requests. And last, a closing paragraph thanking them for their time, contact information, and perhaps if and how you're going to follow up.


-__- 24.04.2009. 08:01

What are some tips for a good resumé? I want to apply for my first job (im 16) but im not sure about how to type an effective resumé. any help is appreciated!


Admin 24.04.2009. 08:01

For your first job, you'll want to focus on a resume that emphasizes your skills rather than your experience, or, in this case, the lack of.

Make sure there are no spelling errors as this is the most common reason for applicants being overlooked. Nobody wants to hire an "edtor".

Make sure you have a clear objective or summary of what you're looking for in a position. If you don't you make your potential employer read all the way through to figure out what type of job would suit you. Cut to the chase and tell them up front what you want. Also, in this section focus on the employers needs or desires. Keep it short, though. Two to three lines at most should let an employer know what you're qualified to do.

Try to focus on what you did in your past experiences, including your classes, in terms of what you were responsible for instead of the results. If you received any awards or distinctions, feel free to add them later on in the resume.

Keep it simple and don't overdo words that sound complicated. Chances are that, if you're looking for a job out of high school, your potential employer isn't looking for someone with a degree in English Literature. Just keep it short and simple.

I've left a link below to give you a good high school template to use. Any sections you don't need, like employment, just delete out. Best of luck to you finding a job.


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