Resume 101: The 4 Things You Must Include

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There are many different opinions on what information you should and shouldn’t include on your resume. But there are certain basics that must be there. 

Here’s the good news: you already have all the answers to this test. These are the big 4.

1. Contact Information

Include your name, as well as the proper pronunciation if you find that others have trouble with it. Below it, include the phone number you use most, which is likely your mobile. Also include an email address. If you’re still in college or graduate school, use your .edu address to show that you do actually go to that school, but if you are already in the workforce use your personal email. (Not your work email address!) 

Be sure that your personal email address is something professional and appropriate, and is with an email provider like Gmail or Outlook. An email address ending in something like @hotmail.com or @earthlink.net could make you seem out of touch to some recruiters, many of whom increasingly value tech-savvy candidates. For your physical address, you only need to include your city, state, and zip code. If you are planning to relocate or are open to it, let employers know that on your resume as well. 

2. Work Experience

The main event! This is the meat and potatoes of your resume, so you’ll want to put thought into picking out the most impactful accomplishments that are relevant to the role you’re looking for. For each job you’ve held, add your title, company name, and city and state of the office you worked in–listed from most recent to least. Below each role, list 2-4 of your biggest and most relevant duties, with numbers to back them up. Include links to work examples, portfolios, or anything else that will make you stand out, even if it’s not directly related to the role.

3. Education

Unless you’re a recent graduate, this info goes below your work experience. Only list your high school education if you did not pursue higher education and you have graduated within the last few years. For college and graduate school, include the name, the institution’s city and state, your degree, and any honors received.

4. Skills

When it comes to listing your skills, be as specific as possible, prioritizing the ones that can be applied to the role you are seeking. For each of the skills, include the number of years you’ve performed it. Also, if you have any licenses (with your license number), certifications, or training courses you have completed/are taking, list those out as well.

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