Although not a recommended course of action, many candidates choose to prepare their resumes by slavishly copying and/or paraphrasing materials from widely-available resume templates. By providing an outline, the resume template affords its viewer some idea as to the nature and order of information on the common resume document.
In most cases, the first element to make its appearance on resume templates is the “Statement of Objective.” Self-explanatory in nature, the “Objective” is a statement of the job seeker’s goal in terms of position desired. Two schools of thought exist with respect to the “Objective.” One states its importance in providing an immediate focus for the resume. The other argues its irrelevance in a job market that applicants wish to exploit to the fullest, via the broadest range of opportunities.
Enter, then, the “Professional Profile” or “Summary of Qualifications” on most professional resume templates. An abbreviated recapture of the candidate’s skill sets and accomplishments, this section is used by some job seekers to list and/or aggregate keywords and/or succinct phrases providing the reader with a sense of the candidate’s nature of background and scope of experience.
What most often follows next is the meat of the resume: one’s “Experience.” Whether the applicant chooses to prepare a chronological resume, a functional (“skills-based”) resume, or some hybrid style document, the aspiring employee must discuss his duties and accomplishments in the “Experience” section. The job hopeful must capitalize upon the use of keywords, which are not confined merely to verbs (also called “action words”). He must also infuse the resume with acronyms and phrases that have meaning to specific industries and/or have relationship to particular job functions. To enhance his marketability, the candidate should incorporate detailed statements indicating achievement into this section of the resume. Of course, the name of each employer, the respective timeframe employed, and one’s job title or titles must be included in this section.
On virtually all professional resume templates, a section for formal “Education” should follow “Experience.” While some candidates use this section solely to list their degree(s), others include “Related Training,” also termed “Professional Development.” Space permitting, some aspirants create a separate section encompassing the pertinent seminars, non-matriculating courses, and workshops demonstrating their professional evolution and willingness to cultivate applicable, ongoing knowledge.
Unless one desires to list “Community Service” activities or “Hobbies/Interests,” most professional resume templates close with “References.” These listings are comprised of people, such as former employers and professors, who can attest to the applicant’s work/academic history and achievements. Some candidates feel compelled to include detailed information directly on their resumes (i.e., the individual’s name, title, company, and contact information). Others, however, invite the employer to delve further into the applicant’s background via a single phrase, such as “References will be furnished upon request.” Still others, choose to make no mention whatsoever of “References.”
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