5 essential components of a resume.

  • resumes
  • November 02, 2016

Having a resume that showcases your skills and accomplishments will increase your chances of landing the job you want. Your resume doesn’t need to be long, but should include enough basic information to let your potential employer know why you’d be a good fit for the company.

To do that, you’ll need to make sure your resume is organized correctly so hiring managers can get all the information they need to make a decision. Here are the essential parts of a resume to include to ensure you don’t leave anything out.

1. resume contact information

Start at the top of the page and type your name — make it bold and centered, and use a larger font than you use on the rest of the resume. After that, skip a line and proceed to include:

  • your address
  • your city, state and zip code
  • home phone or cell phone number
  • full email address

tips for writing this resume section:

  • Keep your contact information on one line. You can separate your information with a vertical line or bullet.
  • Choose a simple font, such as Arial or Times New Roman. A font that’s too flashy might draw negative attention to your resume.
contact information

2. summary

After you complete your basic information, skip a line and type "Summary," bolded and left-aligned on the page. In this section, you will be writing a very brief paragraph (it can be two or three phrases) describing your general work ethic and experience.

tips for writing this resume section:

Include basic keywords about your industry. These are the words or phrases that a hiring manager will look for when scanning your resume. For instance, some general keywords for a manufacturing worker would include:

  • assembly
  • logistics
  • production line

here's an example of a good summary for a manufacturing worker:

Dedicated assembly employee with logistics and production line experience. Proven ability to quickly learn new responsibilities and equipment. Hard worker who helps exceed company goals.

3. job skills and certifications

Underneath your summary paragraph, type “Job Skills,” bolded and left-aligned on the page. Here you’ll list your industry-relevant talents or certifications. This section allows you to showcase your skills even if you don’t have a lot of prior experience. The best way to format this part of your resume is to use bullet points to list important skills (pick five or six) that you can offer to the organization.

tips for writing this resume section:

Just like in your profile section, use keywords to make your resume stand out. If you’re applying from a job posting, look at the position’s required skills and list the things you do well.

Here are three job skills examples:

  • assembly line operations
  • quality control
  • basic equipment repair

4. resume experience section

This is one of the most important parts of a resume, so be sure to take the time to develop it properly.

Below your job skills, type “Experience,” bolded and left-aligned on the page. This is where you’ll list the companies, titles and years of employment of your previous positions. Then, underneath each job, list three or four of your accomplishments in that role. This is another area you can format with bullet points.

tips for writing this resume section:

  • If you’re currently employed, write the year you started, followed by a hyphen and the word “Present.”
  • Use past tense for previous accomplishments and present tense for current roles and responsibilities.
  • When listing accomplishments, focus on specific figures and goals you have met or exceeded. One example could be: “Increased packing volume by more than 50 boxes per hour.”
  • Don’t forget to include any apprenticeships you’ve held!
professional experience

5. education

Just like you’ve formatted your previous sections, type “Education,” bolded and left-aligned on your page. In this area, you’ll list your current or completed educational experience. If you’re currently enrolled in school or training, list the name of the school or program along with the dates you enrolled and are expected to graduate. Otherwise, list your most recent education, completion date and degree or diploma received.

tips for writing this resume section:

  • It’s alright to list your high school diploma or GED if you don’t have any higher education.
  • Don’t forget to add any technical or vocational training and any other coursework that may be relevant to your industry.

you’re almost done

Don’t forget to double-check for spelling and grammatical errors. Use the spell-check feature on your computer and, if possible, ask a friend to read your resume as well. If you’re confident your resume is ready to go, then start applying for jobs. Good luck!

If you or your friends are looking for a new job opportunity, Randstad is here to help! Visit our website and search for open positions in your area.