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The Perfect Resume (+ a FREE resume template!)

Your resume is your first impression to a potential employer. You want them to be able to get any information they need off of it quickly and easily. This means it needs to be well organized and easy to read. I am no expert in resume’s but I have gotten almost all of the jobs I have applied and interviewed for and I’ve worked hard to make sure my resume catches their eye. Here are my steps (in order) to perfect your simple and straight forward resume:

1) contact information

On your resume your name, phone number, email address, and city, state (optional) need to be very visible at the very top of the page. They should be 2-4pts larger in font and I almost always do them in bold also. This ensures that the person reviewing your resume does not have to search for any of your basic information. Although it’s optional, I think it’s important to include your location, but not necessarily your address. (Side note: this should be obvious but please use a professional email address like yourname@gmail.com or something. Nobody is going to hire a hotkitty@hotmail.com. Trust me.)

2) Education

The next thing that should be on your resume is your education. As you get older it’s not as important, but I still like to include my high school that I graduated from. I think it just helps tell your story about where you’re from and how you got here. I usually put the year I graduated also, but that’s optional. Above your high school information, put the degree or certifications you have, where you received them from and what year you completed them. (Optional: if you’re pretty fresh out of college, and you had a good GPA, I would add it here)

3) Work Experience

Start with your most recent job first and work your way backwards. As time passes, you can drop those first jobs, like at Starbucks or McDonalds in High School unless it’s relevant. But make sure there are no gaps in time that are unaccounted for. Make sure to list your position, name of the company, dates worked (month and year are fine), and location in this section. If you have room, you can list your responsibilities for each in this section.

4) Skills

In this section, list the skills you think are most relevant to the position you are applying for. “Making a bomb PB&J sandwich” is probably not relevant in most situations, but you do you. Some good examples of skills are: Photoshop, Social Media, WordPress, HTML, Customer Service, etc. Anything you want the employer to know that will help them see what a great employee you would be.

5) References

You should have at least 3 references. I think 3 is the perfect number because nobody wants to call more than 3 people. You should list their name, their relationship to you (I always like to put supervisors; it shows that you were a good employee to them.), what company they work for, and their phone number. They should only be people you know will give you a good reference. Otherwise, what’s the point?

These are all things you should for sure have on your resume, but the possibilities are endless. I tend to lean towards a very simple and streamlined resume because I like to really bring it home during the interview. I like to make sure that the person reviewing the resumes knows I’m qualified, but still leave enough to chat about. Plus, the simpler and easier the resume is to read, the more information they will be able to take from it. They won’t get lost in the details. I know this is hotly contested, but I like to keep my resumes at one page. I think at some point in my life I will go to two pages, but for now, I think one page is more effective.

And now, what you actually came here for.

Here is your access to the free fillable resume template:

free resume template

All of the above steps can be put, in order, into the resume template.

Good luck on all your job hunting!

What do you make sure to always have on your resume?

|| the chaotic creative

  • Elaina O’ Brien

    great tips! always wanting to improve on my cv.. will be using this in the future! thanks for sharing 🙂

    • thanks so much! glad they could help!

  • Raquel Harbin

    This is so helpful, great template too!