Whether you’re in marketing or manufacturing, finding employment begins with writing a résumé. For those early in their careers, prioritizing what experience is most relevant to include can be a challenge. Here are some tips from our Project Opportunity tool box to get you started:
- Brainstorm: We call it the ‘Information Dump’. Make a list of all your experiences. Are you an early-career or entry-level candidate? Think back to relevant coursework, academic awards and achievements, volunteer work, fraternity/sorority affiliations, clubs, student government, community activism, and athletic team participation. After you have compiled a large list, work to cut down and edit.
- Research: Learn the company well enough so that you can reflect in your résumé those same aspects of culture, formality, and values. Pro tip: most companies have an “Our Culture” or “Our Story” link right on their website. Some websites will even share details about the team you will join. Start there.
- Decide: Adjust your résumé to reflect the qualifications and skills of the job to which you are applying. Pro tip: look for keywords from the job responsibilities and qualifications section of the job description and include them in your résumé. List experience in reverse chronological order—newest to oldest. If you don’t have a ton of work history, that’s okay! You can still list your relevant experiences you brainstormed above.
- Format: Résumé reviewing can be somewhat subjective based on the recruiter, company, and business needs. Generally speaking:
- Keep relevant experience at the top of your résumé.
- Use bullet points and keep it short.
- Be quantitative and specific with your achievements. Fill in the blanks on your above brainstorm; how many? How often? For how long? I.e., I volunteered for the Humane Society vs. I organized more than 300 volunteers across 12 events per year.
- Don’t go crazy with unique colors or formatting unless the position you are applying for has a creative focus
- Summarize: Most recruiters agree that you can ditch the “objective statement” if you are going into a career that closely aligns with your educational or work experience; however, if you’re applying for a position outside of your major, consider the following when drafting your summary:
- What makes you passionate about the new field/industry?
- What skills and experiences will make you successful in this role?
We want to help make your job search process as smooth as possible. View more tips on our website, or show us your newly polished résumé online by visiting the Search Jobs section of our website and apply for a position that best fits your area of interest and experience.