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Tips for Writing an Effective Resume

Woman Writing a resume

When putting together a resume, you will likely have many questions. How much information should you include? What skills or experiences should you highlight? How can you make yourself stand out to employers? Before applying for your dream job, follow these resume tips to make sure that yours is clean, informative, and effective.

Begin With a Strong Opener

In addition to listing basic information such as your name, phone number, email address, and links to your online profiles, the very top of your resume is the perfect place to make a strong first impression. Take some time to craft a quick, enticing profile about yourself—two or three concise sentences should do—that summarizes your relevant skills and experiences that will help you in the position. Think of your opening profile as a quick pitch explaining why you are the perfect person for the role.

Showcase Your Education, Skills, and Knowledge

The bulk of your resume should be made up of details about the skills and knowledge you've gained from previous jobs, as well as from degree and certification programs. Remember to show rather than tell; for example, instead of simply writing that you're an "effective communicator," include a few concrete examples of academic or professional situations in which strong communication skills helped you to succeed. Be sure also to include specialized skills if you have them, such as foreign language fluency or volunteer experience that's relevant to the job.

Clean It Up!

No list of resume tips would be complete without mentioning the obvious: proofread your resume again and again. You can even ask a friend or two to look over your resume draft to make sure that everything is grammatically correct and coherent. Since many companies pre-scan resumes for certain relevant keywords, it's also a good idea to make sure that you've included a few terms and phrases from the job description throughout.

The Tulane School of Professional Advancement offers students the opportunity to advance their careers through online and on-campus degree and certificate programs built for working professionals. Learn more about career development at SoPA and explore our listing of local career planning resources.

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