8 Tips For Writing The Best Resume

By Stacy Davidson Subscribe to RSS Feed

Dominican University of California is located in the heart of the San Francisco Bay Area, which is well known for its highly competitive job market. How do Dominican students and alumni create resumes that help them land job and internship interviews?

At Dominican University of California, the Career Development Office helps students and alumni in developing career planning skills to achieve their career goals. One of the most essential needs for landing the job or internship of your dreams is to create an effective resume that will help you stand out from your competition. 

Here is our advice for creating the best resume: 

  1. Keywords
    Use keywords to target your resume to each job description.
    Keywords are the words that appear most frequently in a job description and are searched by Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) to match your qualifications to the job posting. Find keywords in the job description, like manage, analyze, supervise, evaluate, etc., and include those words in your resume.
  2. Action Verbs
    Use action verbs to begin your achievement statements.
    Action verbs are the words that begin the achievement statements describing the work that you have done in each position. If you are still in the job, use a present tense action verb. Past tense action verbs are used for previous roles. Google “action verbs” for examples. To create an effective achievement statement use the “APR” method: Action + Problem/Project + Result.
  3. Two Pages
    Keep it to two pages.
    The one page rule no longer applies. Two pages is now the acceptable page limit for resumes. Curriculum vitaes (CVs), typically submitted for jobs in academia, scientific research, and medical fields, do not have a page limit. 
  4. Review & Edit
    Review for spelling, grammar and typos.
    The fastest way to end a review of your resume is to have mistakes that are easily avoidable. Ask a friend . . . or two to review your resume prior to submitting.
  5. Use Data
    Include quantifiable data and numbers to highlight tangible outcomes (where applicable).
    Employers value tangible evidence of the work that you have done so if you can quantify the work with statistics, percentages or numbers, include them. Just don’t overdo it!
  6. Relevant Work
    For each job description, put the most relevant task at the beginning of the list.
  7. Branding Statement
    Do not use an objective; create a branding statement instead.
    Objectives do little more than state the obvious and take up valuable space on your resume. A branding statement, on the other hand, highlights your qualifications (utilizing key words) for the position in a brief one sentence statement that encourages the reader to keep reading.
  8. Fonts
    Use easy-to-read fonts such as Calibri, Arial or Helvetica. These are the best fonts to use.

Whatever your career goals are using these tips will have an effective impact on your resume and job search. We wish you the best of luck!

Stacy Davidson is the former Director of  the Career Development Office at Dominican University of California. She is currently the Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. 


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