Frequently asked questions about resumes

The resume has been around for several years. I started by being simple enough; containing your background information in a page or two usually types using a typewriter.

However, resumes have evolved significantly over time. The expectations of the employer have also evolved and more details are expected in your resume. The length, contents, how to send and what must be included have all evolved to match the needs and expectations of the current industry employers. This can be confusing when you do not know what to write, to add or leave out and how to structure your resume. This article looks at some of the common questions asked about resume writing including;

Should I position myself as a generalist or a specialist?

The employers have specific requirements for the specific position that they are advertising. You should therefore tailor your resume to suit the specific skills of the position that you are applying for. However, some jobs do not require that you position yourself as a specialist in that area. One such job is that of a handy man.

What is the importance of the list if work achievements in my resume?

In the past, an employer only needed you to include your duties and responsibilities in the organizations that you worked for. However, today, an employer requires that you also list the achievements that you have had in your previous employer. This is helps to assess the actual value that you have added to the organization that you worked for. This allows the employer to determine your suitability for the position in their organization.

Should I use the chronological or the functional format in my resume?

These may confuse some people especially the new entrants in the industry. There are specific things that can guide your selection of a type of format to use when writing your resume. If you have been out of the industry for a while, have little or no experience, have a work gap or have been switching jobs frequently, then a functional resume is best for you. This is because it will highlight your skills and divert the attention from your limited experience in that particular type of job. However, if you have vast experience, then you can use the chronological resume style. You can list down the positions you have worked in and the dates that you did so. This will demonstrate you work ethic and the loyalty thus increase your chances of landing an interview.

What sort of common mistakes do people make in resumes?

Resumes are fairly simple to write. However, they need a keen attention to details and intelligent writing skills. This is because it is a way that you can package yourself to employers. However, many people do not pay attention to the grammar when writing a resume. This leads to spelling mistakes and poor sentence skills. You should avoid these by seeking a second and even a third opinion on your resume.

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