The perfect resume format passes the ATS (application tracking system) and immediately grabs the attention of the recruiter.
It defines your profile and makes it clear that you are a suitable candidate for the job while minimizing aspects that need not be highlighted.
Depending on your education, experience and background you have to pick which resume format is best for you. Whether it contains a picture or without a picture, what is the best font, where to put certifications and should you use bold or italic to highlight your key points.
There are several different ways to make your resume. One of the first and important decision is what resume format do employers prefer and how my resume should look like?
In this article, I will discuss the different formats of cv and the best possible ways to make a powerful resume for maximum success.
Recommended Resume Format
1. Contact information
It is the first information that is being shared with the recruiter. This includes your key piece of contact information where the recruiter will contact you in later stages of recruitment.
The contact information includes:
- Phone Number
- Address (City, State)
- Email Address
- Social Media URL
You should share the phone number which is always with you or the number in which you are available the maximum time.
When we talk about the address on a profile there are a lot of mixed suggestions. Traditionally it is must include the address on your document but now as the technology advances most of the conversation done online.
Mostly people wanted to keep their address private because they are not comfortable in sharing this delicate information. So to decide whether to put your address or not, read my article on should you put your address on your profile.
Tip: Try and make a professionally sound email address based on your name, this way recruiter will have fewer doubts while contacting you.
Your professional objective talks about your goals. It is an attention-grabbing section in your profile which tells how your skills make you a perfect fit for the position.
Usually, recruiter scans the content of your cv so having an impressive statement is a big plus. This statement works well for entry-level candidates or for those who are looking for a career change
It is different from the objective in a way that it highlights the qualification, skills, experience that is your USP (unique selling point) for the job you are applying for. In this section, you can deliver your pitch to the recruiter rather mentioning your professional needs.
It is also known as career summary, executive summary or a career statement. It is suitable for candidates having more experience.
4. Work experience
Your work experience is the focal point of your document. This section should be written with the most attention. You should mention your professional history in this part. Your work experience shows the recruiter whether you have the necessary skills and experience to succeed in the job role.
You must study the job description and thus make this section the most effective. Each job must be listed in reverse chronological order and have its sub-heading which should include:
- Job title
- Company Name
- Start date and End date.
The first thing recruiters look into your profile is the job titles you had and the caliber of the company.
If you have been working for a long duration now, your education section will automatically be minimized at the bottom of the document. Except for applying for a career in certain fields like education, medical, finance etc. which require a high academic score. Following should be the sequence:
- Name of the education institution
- School and the Board
- Year attended.
If you’re fresher and had no work experience in such a situation your education qualification will come above the work experience section.
It will have more details other than the details mentioned above you can mention your grades or percentage as well. Now here comes the question of how to mention your grades in your biodata to answer this I have written an article about how and when to showcase your marks in your cv.
6. Awards and honours
You can use those awards and honours that make sense for the job and the company you are applying to. Irrelevant awards and honours may create difficulty by distracting from the main qualification and relevant awards may increase your chances.
7. Volunteer work
If you have active volunteer work it must be added along with the skills learned. You should always be careful with the volunteer work such as work done for any political party or religious event.
Your skills show how fit you are for that particular job. You should put relevant skills on your cv in a way to move ahead in the interview process. Recruiter always looks for people who have the appropriate skill set for the job.
In today’s world of technology, every employer looks for a certain set of computer skills in a candidate. You must learn or update your skills before applying for the job.
Types of Format
You can choose from the following format depending upon which format suits you the most.
1. Reverse chronological
This is the most common. In this format, you list your work experience in reverse chronological order. Most recent experience at the beginning and then going backwards.
2. Functional or skill-based
This format focuses on your skills over experience. The purpose of this cv is to showcase the skills in a way that will attract the reader more towards your skills than the work experience..
As the name says the combination is the combination of above mentioned two formats. It is also called the hybrid format.
How to Choose a CV Layout?
Using a specific layout for your profile means creating a highly targeted cv based on your career history. ATS or other profile screening software are evolved to recognize and read your profile only if they follow certain guidelines.
You have to format your cv that is suitable for your profile and passes the ATS test. Even though you are sending your document to a recruiter directly in this case also you have to choose a suitable format which is well known in your industry.
How Long the Professional Biodata Should be?
Recruiters take only a few seconds to take a glance at your cv. It is said to be ideal to have a single page or a maximum of two pages document.
According to a recent study that involved nearly 500 recruiters, and HR professionals and nearly 8,000 resumes, recruiters are 2.3 times as likely to prefer two-page profile over the one-page profile, regardless of a candidate’s job level.
Sometimes it happens that it becomes 4-5 pages long since it includes all the awards, skills, honours. So it is better to add only the recent, relevant, and most impressive skillset to make to the recruiter’s eye.
Important Aspects for an Impressive CV
It is the first thing a recruiter sees in your profile. It is located just below your name and above cv summary. A headline summarizes your professional experience and qualities. It is also termed as resume title.
A title should be brief and easy to read, just like newspaper headlines. You can check my article on how to create a cv headline and who should use it. Moreover, if you want to create automatic headlines for your cv/profile click here.
Powerful words and adjectives
A candidate’s profile is ineffective without the use of powerful biodata words. You have a limited time to leave a lasting impression on the recruiter. A great way to capture their attention is to contain power words in your document.
These are the action words which is used to highlight your skills, personality and achievement in an effective way. It will help the employer to understand your value as an employee.
In addition to this, you must use descriptive adjectives in your profile that set a tone for your application and makes it more appealing.
Hobbies in cv
People think that it is not an important part like other sections in your profile. But it is an interesting part that can be included in your biodata. Everything in your cv should increase your value as a candidate if written appropriately.
There are lots of golden rule to writing this section in your document. And you have the chance to turn the tide by mentioning it. It can be difficult to think about what should be included in this section. But fear not we have covered it all for you.
It is another important aspect of your biodata. But references are not always the part of your interview process. In your limited document space of one or two pages, you have to put only the most relevant details. It is highly recommended to put references in your profile only when it is asked by the recruiter or mentioned in the job description.
Sometimes candidates mention “references available upon request” in their document. It is better to avoid this information too and don’t waste your cv space for something that is not important or not even asked.
Lying on biodata
Many candidates lie on their cv sometimes to meet the job requirements or to make their application attractive. But they forgot the fact that falseness on the profile is not good for their career.
This makes a bad impression once caught by the employer. There are many situations when people lie on their cv and crack the job offer but afterwards, they had bad experiences to know more about this check my article on things to know about falsification on cv.
Some important tips
Tips that must be followed while preparing your cv:
- Select a professional font and size for your profile.
- Select a cv template from your industry.
- Be specific, don’t put everything on your document.
- Contact information to be more prominent.
- Work experience to be reverse chronologically placed in your cv.
And many more….
If you want more information about important tips & tricks that have to be followed while making your biodata click here.
For more visibility of your profile and to meet greater opportunities you must add your cv to LinkedIn. Linkedin is a professional networking site where you can connect with working professional and widen your job search.
You have made it! At this point, you must be familiar with the format and requirements a biodata need. Congratulations! You are one step closer to your job plus you’re on right track.
So jot down all the necessary requirements you will need while writing your biodata before applying to your dream job.
Over to You
We have tried to explain the most important and necessary components. The shortlisted profile has such components. What is your take on this? Let us know in the comment section below.
My best wishes for landing a good job.