Writing an effective Résumé

Hello World! Hope it’s going well for you guys. As the blog title reads, this write-up is about some simple ways to make an effective resume. Personally, I have been on both the sides- the applicant as well as the interviewer. So, I can say that I have a fair idea of what would make a good resume :). The aim of this blog is to share what I think may be helpful to you guys. So, without further ado let’s start decoding easy ways to make a better resume.


I. Use a good editing tool

Let’s start with the basics ! This is the first thing that made my resume look and feel 100 times better.  Earlier I would use Microsoft word for my editing. And, psst, I sucked at it! I do not know the shortcuts to getting the right boundaries, page offsets and also getting alignments I want. (Sure, judge me all you want! :D). Then I started using online editors (such as overleaf) that allow me to build resume using Latex.

What better way than to “code” your resume ;). This trick has been so useful. Sure, it needs a little more effort than word. But, the outcome is worth the effort. It is easy to use them, they allow for anytime-anywhere access, since they store your profile online.

There are many templates available. I would say – do check them out~ .I have added my template picks in case you guys decide to give it a try (at the end of this blog). Let’s now focus on what should be the content, in the following two tricks.


II. Focus on your strengths and interests

This tricks needs your answer to two important questions. Firstly, what you are confident about and secondly how is it relevant to what you want out of this job.

One way to finding answer for these is, to write down what is it that you enjoy and are confident about along with how this can be aligned with the job requirements (the job that you are applying for).

For example – it can be programming in Python or Java or may be you have a good understanding of machine learning algorithms or you love to design new algorithms. Whatever it is, just write down on a paper first.

Then, begin to build your resume around this topic of interest. What is your relevant experience or how have you prepared for a career in it (do you have hobby projects, coursework etc), try and list them. Keep the focus around this through your resume.

Why? Because, the content on your resume to some extent dictates what you may be questioned about. So, when you focus on your strengths while adding content, it automatically translates to confidence in handling the questions thrown at you, during the course of your interview.


III. Avoid this !

I understand the urge to stand out, with your resume. I also understand the pressure of a job search. But, I cannot stress here enough that you should put things in your resume that is truly your work. It’s not too difficult for a person in the industry to identify when you blatantly lie or go overboard on exaggerating. Do not write about things that you have not done or do not understand completely. And, when you do put up impressive numbers or things you have done, you should be able to explain as to how you achieved that. Else, this simply adds unnecessary pressure when you are at the interview, in case you are asked about it.

For example, if you want to write about how you improved the reliability of a software by 15%, then you should be ready to justify how you achieved that number. Just throwing some metrics in the resume is not going to take you a long way. So, focus on what you have done and be prepared to answer how you achieved those numbers as well.


Few more good points I can think of :

  • Put your educational qualification (if experienced, add the highest level degree)
  • Keep your sentences short and effective (long sentences make the reader lose interest)
  • Put other work experience or projects that are not directly relevant to the job you are seeking in a separate section (For example – “Additional Experience“)
  • If you are sharing your resume online, you could add clickable links to your website or project pages, conference journals etc, throughout your resume
  • You could also mention about interpersonal skills (good team player etc). But, also be prepared to prove it or provide examples if needed

And finally proof read, also get it reviewed before using it !

Good luck !


Templates

Have selected two templates that you could start with, as listed below :

Template 1  Recent College graduate resume

  • contains all the information needed – fits into one page and is also not cluttered
  • The sections seem sufficient and the content is crisp

Template 2 Experienced candidate resume

  • clearly lists all the prior experience in a concise format

When you open the template with an overleaf account, it opens up the display to edit the contents. Left view has the Latex code that can be edited and the right side shows the output resume document, as in the snapshot below.

overleaf_snapshot

And, that’s all I had for this tidbit. Hope these simple tricks helped you guys make a better resume. As always let me know what you feel. You can reach me at decodergirlblog@gmail.com.

Note : This is not sponsored. Overleaf was useful to me and hence I am sharing info about it.

 

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