How to write a decent resume

Today I read a resume that annoyed me immensely.

Look, I’m overjoyed by Obama’s win and then I read this resume that is so made of stupid, I don’t know where to start.

So to help you aspiring jobseekers, or those looking for work in this tough climate, here’s some free advice.

1. Use a simple format, easy to read and scan.


Name, address, email, tel on top

Don’t list it like a form.

Name: Sodding Idiot

Address: Parents’ place

No, no, no, no, no

Unless your potential employers ARE idiots, just put your name, add, email,etc at the top. Left-aligned or centred, up to you.

2. Don’t mention your race, religion, height, weight. Let them find out at the interview.

3. No need attach picturelah. Dei. Not even if you look like Jessica Biel/Brad Pitt.

4. Use BRITISH SPELLING. Especially if you’re applying for any sort of job that involves writing. So spelling “organised” as “organized” is a no-no. It shows that you are LAZY and rely too much on Microsoft’s spellchecker which is fallible. Very.

5. Keep it short, 1-2 pages. Sell yourself but don’t be too verbose. A resume is a summary of why you are uniquely qualified for the position. And no, unless you’re applying to teach at ABRSM, employers aren’t going to be interested in your Grade 8 piano. I know two people who are Grade 8 holders and only are because they were forced to go that far. Your piano skills are likely irrelevant to your application.

6. References? Just add “References provided upon request.” Because most of the time, they won’t need them and really, it’s not a wise idea to willy-nilly give out people’s contact information unless absolutely necessary.

And some general writing advice:

1. Keep your sentences short and sweet.

2. Don’t use words you don’t know.

3. Clarity, clarity, clarity. Make it easy for your readers to understand what you’re writing.

4. Do you know the difference between it’s and its? There’s and theirs? If you don’t know how to use the apostrophe, then please, don’t apply for a writing job.

It’s = It is.

Its = possessive of ‘it’/to show something belongs or is a trait of ‘it’

Because I want to save the world from bad resumes, feel free to email me with questions about your CVs or leave your comments. I promise I will answer you.

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