Tips on Resume Writing

Let me get straight to the point – bang…everybody wanted to know how to get a job, right…

The first step is to prepare a good (if not great) resume.

Well, here are some tips based on my experiences with resumes.

  • Do not put the title as Resume or Curriculum Vitae on the top of your document. It is similar to writing Letter on top of a leave letter or business letter 😀

This was said to me once by a recruiter, in my second or third interview 😉

  • Do not put more personal information like Age, Sex, Marital Status, Fathers Name, Fathers Occupation, Blood Group, etc. Check if the details will be useful for the company before sending it 😉

On any case, you will be asked to fill up an Application Form before taking the interview.

  • Do mention the correct subject in the mail. If your recruiter requests for a particular subject, please do that.

This I experienced from a company. The recruiter was kind enough that he asked me to send another mail with the correct subject.

When I advertise for a Job and get resumes with different subject, I make sure that I write to the concerned person and make them realise that it is necessary to send the resume in a mail with the required subject, even in future with other companies. I usually ask the candidate to write the subject as “Technical Documentation Engineer” when I was working in Bangalore. I got mails with the subject as “Forwarding my resume”, “Reply to your ad”, “CV for the position on Technical Writer”, “Resume – Technical Documentation Engineer”, and so on. Most of them do not realize the need.

If some of you wonder why particular subject is needed, the reason is simple. Most of the recruiter use either Outlook/Lotus Notes and all your mails will cluster their Inbox. If there is a proper subject, they can sort the Inbox by subject and open only the required mails. Else you mail will be lost in their Inbox forever. I normally create RULES to transfer all mails with a particular subject to a particular folder so I do not cluster my inbox 😀

  • Do check, if all the details required by the company is there in your mail or in your resume.

For example, in my Job Ad, I had asked the candidates to provide information such as “Do you posses a valid passport?” and “Are you willing to travel abroad, if and when necessary?”. Out of all the resumes that I received only few had mentioned this information. So, I had to write to them again for these information. You have to remember that “First impression is the best impression” 😉 Your way or approach in writing the mail and presenting the resume must depict your attitude 🙂

  • Do not forward your old resumes. Spend some time in reviewing the resume.

When I used to search for a new job, I write a mail with common subject, attach my resume and write all the mail ids in To, Cc or Bcc and send the mail. I guess out of ten only one or two replied 🙂 Please never do this. Do make sure all the relevant information required by the recruiter is present in your resume.

  • Do not write lengthy hobbies or interests.

For example, I saw in one of the resumes, “Hobbies: Playing Football, Basketball, Cricket, Kho-Kho, Table Tennis, Tennis, Reading, Music, Watching TV channels like National Geographic, Animal Planet, ESPN, Star…..” geez enough…We know that you are very well occupied.

The ideal hobbies would be “Reading Novels of <author name>, Listening to soft music, Writing to e-magazines, etc”…well make sure that everything is true 🙂 But even this is very subjective.

  • Do not fabricate your resume.

Remember that your recruiter will ask questions that are only related to your resume. For example, if you mention that you know RoboHelp…they might ask all type of questions related to RoboHelp. It may even be silly.

Once a recruiter asked me, when was RoboHelp founded? Who found RoboHelp? I was prepared on the other things like context-sensitive help, chm files, and so on 🙂

  • Do spellcheck your mail and resume. (It is very important)

Spend some time in reviewing your mail and resume before sending it to the recruiter. I received lot of resumes and mails with typos. Geez…You are a “Technical Writer”, you cannot afford to make these silly mistakes. Well, one or two might be permissible for some companies, but not always. It is better from our side to be correct, as much as possible, right 😉

  • Do address your recruiter properly.

When addressing the recruiter, if you are sure that the person is a guy or girl, do address accordingly. If there is no name for the recruiter, for example hr-india@xyz.com, address as “Dear Sir/Madam”. If there is a name and if you do not know whether the person is a guy or girl, address as “Dear Sir/Madam”, no harm :D. But please do not address as Dear Sir or Dear Madam when you are not sure about the other person 🙂 You can address as Dear XYZ, I hope there is no problem in doing that, but not “Hi XYZ”, “Hey ABC”, and so on…

I received mails addressing “Dear Madam”, “Dear Sara”…geez, do I know you or do you know me…!!

  • Do not mention the references 😉

Well, when you write the references section, the ideal thing to do is “References: Available on request”. If the recruiters really require some references, they will surely ask. Mentioning your references might turn positive and negative 😉

All the best for your job search 🙂

Coming up next – Tips to Ace an Interview.

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Published in: on November 10, 2006 at 10:27 am  Comments (7)  

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7 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. If somebody is addressing you as “Dear Sara”, it may be that you had signed as Sara. If that is the case, you shall avoid it by signing as Mr. M. Saravanan. I think Dear Sir/Madam is kinda old. Though we took “Sir” from the british and misuse it for any male who is actually not titled “Sir”. Think about it.

  2. Well, I had signed as Saravanan and they took the name SARA from my id sara_techwrit thought i had mentioned by name 🙂 Well, Dear Sir/Madam is not old yet, still valid and useful when you dunno who is on the other side…it helps one to play safe 😉

  3. My tuppence worth:
    When mentioning something like “Projects” in the résumé, I’d be delighted if the person includes info like platform, software, tools used, role, and what the eprson learnt from the project. 🙂

  4. This was a Fantastic wordpress post, I will be sure to save this in my Digg account. Have a great day.

  5. Great tips! I think making a good resume is the one of the best way to get a fine job. I appreciate you for the tips you shared here. 🙂
    http://www.eyerideonline.com/

  6. Where exactly did you actually get the tips to compose ““Tips
    on Resume Writing Technical Writing is an art”?
    Thanks -Donny

  7. Just desire to say your article is as amazing. The clarity in ykur post is simply great and i
    could assume you aree an expert on thiks subject.
    Well with your permission allow me to grab your RSS feed to keep updxated
    with forthcoming post. Thaanks a million and please carry on the rewarding work.


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