Resume Writing Tips You Should Know

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Your resume is a marketing tool that allows you to advertise your skills and abilities to potential employers in your absence. The presentation of your resume can either open or close the door to success, leaving you with a lingering thought of "why didn't I get an interview? I am qualified."

The resume that gets the job interview does not just simply list your past work experiences and duties, it convinces the reader you have the identified skills and abilities to meet or exceed the expectations of the position. For this reason, your resume should be written in such a way that arouses interest, gives reasons why you are more qualified than other applicants, and encourage the employer to contact you for an interview.

What most individuals don't realize is that employers scanned a resume for only a few seconds, searching for key skills and accomplishments that the ideal candidate must possess. As a result, it is imperative that your resume captures the reader's immediate interest, or it will get lost in the shuffle.

Resume Writing Tips

  1. Carefully review the Job Posting or Description
    • More often than not, job hunters write a general resume, sending the same "generic" resume to different job opportunities. This is one of the biggest mistakes, as it results in a mediocre resume that does not fit the recruiter's requirements. It is essential to highlight the appropriate skills and experience you have, pertaining to the job posting. Obtaining a job description for the desired position is a great way to pick out key skills and core competencies. In the event that a job description is not available, you can always research job descriptions on positions with similar titles.
    • Visiting the school district's website also gives plenty of information about the atmosphere of the district and gives you tips on what tone you can use when writing your resume. It is imperative that you write several resumes tailored to the positions for which you are applying. Using one resume to apply to several positions results in a generic resume that never really pinpoints what you have to offer that will supply the needs of each particular employer. A resume is not a one size fits all.
  2. Maintain Focus - Chronological or Functional Resume Format - Know what the reader is looking for and what relevant skills you have to offer. Read the job description, call the school district for more information, or visit the website. Knowledge is power! Once you have established this criteria, you can choose one of two resume writing formats; chronological or functional.
    • Chronological Resume - A chronological resume coordinates your past work experiences, placing emphasis on experiences that apply directly to the educational field.
    • Functional Resume - A functional resume is ideal when you have little or no experience. It allows you to portray your skills and abilities in categories that highlight specific skills the job requires.
  3. Focus on Your Accomplishments
    • Focusing on your individual accomplishments will set you apart from other applicants. This allows you to highlight the value and successes you have brought to your past educational institutions. Spot lighting your successes will allow you to show a potential employer how you outperformed your peers. Quantify your accomplishments. There is something about the % and $ that naturally draws the eyes. Give proof of your accomplishments. (i.e., "Designed unique curriculum that resulted in 75% of my students increasing their test scores by a whole letter grade.")
    • Don't simply list your duties, tell the district how your skills can help advance the goals and objectives of the school or increased student achievement. You are undoubtedly selling yourself when applying for a job with a resume, and you have very little time to close the deal. Make the decision easier for the employer by explaining exactly how you will meet the needs of the school community.
  1. When Writing Use Descriptive & Keywords Descriptive Words
    • When describing your past work experiences and accomplishments, start your phrases in the past-tense, and list them in bulleted format. This will ensure statements are dramatic and descriptive. Example of Descriptive Words: achieved, decreased, planned, produced, restructured, transformed, initiated, supervised, and managed.
  2. Keywords - Ensure that you showcase your abilities in a particular field by using keywords that will highlight your competencies and expertise. Example of Keywords for Teacher: classroom management, curriculum design and implementation. Principal: educational program evaluation, IEPs, enrollment process.
  3. Proof Read & Review Your Resume
    • Read, and re-read your resume. Have someone else review your document, as it is sometimes difficult to identify your own errors. A friend's review of your resume may assist you in discovering unclear and confusing areas, and may provide you with further information that you may have inadvertently forgotten. Having an extra set of eyes to proof your document is always a positive move


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