Resume writing

Selling yourself the right way

The first step in writing a great resume is to be aware of what it is intended for.

A resume is a sales tool, designed to promote you and win that important first interview. TEAM Executive Consultants will assist you in developing the most effective resume based on your skills, experience, qualifications and future aspirations.

Below are some basic guidelines on what information should be included in your resume. Contact us to make an appointment with one of our consultants.

There is no right or wrong way to present a resume or curriculum vitae (CV) but there are a few rules to follow. As each person is different so are their CVs but broadly they should contain the following:

Start with your name, address and all contactable numbers (you would be surprised how many CVs we receive without these basic details).

An attention grabbing summary of what you can offer in about 3 or 4 lines of text or bullet points.

List your work experience in reverse chronological order (i.e. current or latest job first). This should include the start and finish dates by month and year, the name of the organisation, a brief outline of what they do/are and the position that you held. List your duties, responsibilities and finally, the achievements whilst in that position. Again, bullet points are highly regarded.

Having listed all your positions then include your education and professional qualifications. Ideally only include courses that are relevant to your career.

List your current IT and technical skills, including typing/data entry speeds, software (applications), hardware (PC/Mac) and operating systems (Windows/OS).

Leisure interests are not really that important but may disclose leadership potential, team working ability and something of your personality so should be included.

References do not need to be attached to a CV and will be taken up later. If you do list Referees, confirm you have their permission to do so and make certain the address and telephone numbers are correct.

How long should a CV be? Again no right or wrong answer. A competent professional recruiter usually takes about 20-25 seconds to 'read' a CV. One international firm of recruiters stated they took 17 seconds to 'read' your life's work!! However, the generally accepted belief is that the one page wonder, so much in vogue in the USA in the 90's, is too short and a two to four page CV is ideal. The monster eight-plus page CV will just not be read!

When emailing your CV Microsoft Word format is generally regarded as the best. Consultants and prospective employers do not want to have to click on your personal web site (no matter how brilliant it may be) to obtain basic details about you!

If you list skills and experience on your social media accounts such as LinkedIn, be sure this is also reflected in your resume. Prospective employers are checking social media to support your resume, so be sure to make them all aligned and consistent.

Check the spelling and look for any grammatical errors. We have all written 'gobbledy gook' at some time in our career. Spell checks are just not good enough - 'Sign and Sing', 'Stationery and Stationary' are prime examples - so when you think it is perfect (after many attempts) give it to a friend to read thoroughly to point out any mistakes.

Finally, be truthful. False information, i.e. lies, on your CV is highly dangerous and you will be caught out eventually, which may well cost you your job. Be honest in your CV as this will save a lot of time for everyone.

"John from Team Executive Consultants was very helpful in helping me find a job with an accounting firm. Within a day of contacting John, he called me in for an interview and provided me with helpful hints and tips on interviewing techniques and presentation. John was very professional and I can't thank him enough for all his guidance and support."


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