A good resume is an important step towards finding a job. Writing a resume is your way of telling others about your accomplishments, skills and work experiences. So take your time when creating one and if you get stuck, remember, there are many different resources that are open to you. Whether it’s at your school, your local library or your neighbourhood community organization, you can get resume help from a variety of places.
So let’s get started!
There are different ways to put together a Canadian resume; here are some useful tips to keep in mind. Keep it short
Keep your resume short
Most people have a resume that is 2 pages long. Keep it to one page if you have left school recently or do not have a lot of work experience.
Include volunteer work
You should include your volunteer experience in the section on work experience. It is important to talk about what you have done. It does not matter if it was paid or volunteer work.
Keywords describe skills and qualifications and sometimes you will see them in the job posting that you are answering. You should use keywords in your resume. Employers do not read every word on each resume. Help your resume stand out by using as many keywords as you can but do not make up experiences just to use keywords.
Change it for each job
Do not use the same resume for different jobs. Try to create a different resume for each job you want. For some jobs you can change a few sentences to stress certain skills and accomplishments. For others, you may need a new resume.
Look it over
Look over your resume before you send it. Make sure that you entered the right company name and job title on your resume for each job that you are applying to. Also, make sure that there are no spelling or grammar mistakes and that your address and phone number is correct.
Use headings to organize the information in your resume. Common resume headings are:
- Work and Volunteer Experience
Use formatting tools like bolding and bullets to make important information stand out.
There are 2 main types of resumes:
Here is a brief description of each type:
A chronological resume is time based. This type is organized by the positions you held, in the order in which you held them. You list your most recent position first. These resumes are best if you have a lot of experience in your field. They are also better for people who do not have periods of time where they were not working.
A functional resume is skills-based. For this resume you organize your experiences by skills not by the order in which you held the position. Functional resumes are best if you:
- Are a recent graduate
- Have major time gaps in employment
- Are changing careers
Sample Résumés and Cover Letters
Check out sample cover letters and résumés.
- JobStar Central - Good examples of chronological and functional Canadian résumés. Includes samples of cover letters.
- The Dynamic Cover Letters Formula for Job Search Success - Details about what makes a great cover letter.
- Cover Letter Samples - For both experienced job-seekers and for college students and recent graduates.