BestResume
a member of the Professional Association of Resume Writers (PARW)
and a member of the National Resume Writers Association (NRWA)
 

Welcome to BestResume, where our goal is helping you achieve your career goals. An effective, professional resume is the first step, followed by polished and professional interview skills, and BestResume can assist with both. This site contains some helpful job process information below, as well as information about BestResume and getting your own best resume and best interview techniques, to start you on your way to the job you've always wanted!

Job Process Information

About BestResume


The Best Type of Resume

This is a trick title because there is no one best type of resume. The best type of resume for you is the one that presents you at your best advantage, and that is where BestResume can provide valuable assistance! There are two types of standard resumes -- chronological and functional, as explained briefly below.

Chronological Resume

A chronological resume is what most people picture when they envision a resume (see Sample Chronological Resume). It lists jobs held, starting with the most recent, and describes duties performed in each one. It is a good way to show job skills that you've acquired, as well as to show a progression in those skills. A good thing to add to a chronological resume is a Qualifications Summary, where before you describe your jobs, you stress five or six key abilities/characteristics that you want to "jump out" at the reviewer. This helps achieve some of the focused nature of the functional resume, while maintaining the format of the chronological resume.

Functional Resume

A functional resume is good way to stress your skills when you haven't had a lot of paying jobs that show your strengths (see Sample Graduate Resume), because you can choose the headings that best capture your unique skill set and then stress the skills you've acquired from a variety of experiences. You should choose three or four skill categories, and then have at least three, but preferably four, examples of the work you did in those skill categories. After the skills section, you must still do a brief chronological listing of the jobs/experiences from which you gained the skills. And as with the chronological resume, you should consider adding a Qualifications Summary, where before you describe your skills experience, you stress five or six key abilities/characteristics that you want to "jump out" at the reviewer.

A functional resume is also good if you have gaps in your employment (see Sample Re-entering Work Force Resume), because you can stress your skills and strengths, but in the chronological list at the bottom you only list the jobs/experiences from which you gained the strengths. Since these include volunteer experiences as well as paying jobs, gaps can be camouflaged.

Additionally, a functional resume is good if you want to change careers (see Sample Career Change Resume), because you can stress skills and strengths that would not normally be associated with your particular job(s), and reviewers will not have a pre-conceived notion about your abilities based on your job title(s). And again, you can include volunteer experiences.


Resume Tips

Following are some very basic resume tips if you choose to prepare your own resume. But even better, let BestResume prepare a winning resume for you!

Special Interest Groups

Recent Grads

Many recent graduates make the mistake of thinking that they must use a chronological resume that features only their "real" jobs. And if they've only had one or two paying jobs, such as house painting or tutoring, that makes for a pretty skimpy resume, one that probably doesn't highlight the skills that most employers are looking for. Instead, recent grads should consider a functional resume (see Sample Graduate Resume) that features whatever experience (paid or unpaid) is most relevant to the desired job.

Re-entering the Work Force

For individuals re-entering the work force, or entering it for the first time late in life, their paying job(s) may have been many years ago or they may never have held a paying job at all. In this situation, a functional resume (see Sample Re-entering Work Force Resume) really is essential, to stress the skills that have been acquired from volunteer positions or education during the period of "unemployment."

Changing Careers

Often, after years of working in a particular career field, people decide they want to do something completely different. But a chronological resume, where duties are described for the jobs held, would not likely suggest to an employer that the individual could do something in a completely different field. A functional resume (see Sample Career Change Resume), however, could highlight the relevant skills gained from past jobs, as well as any volunteer or educational experience relevant to the desired career field.


Cover Letter

The cover letter is very important, as it is often the first piece of information a potential employer has about you. Your letter should have an opening, a body, and a close, as explained briefly below.

There are three different types of openings, depending on the situation you're in:

The body of the letter should briefly describe your skills (specifically addressing every requirement listed in the ad, if applicable) and strengths, the work you would like to do, and how that would benefit the company.

There are two approaches to the closing. In one, such as with a blind ad or when you do not address your letter to anyone in particular, you include a summary sentence, express your desire for an interview, provide your phone number, and thank the individual, perhaps adding that you look forward to hearing from them soon. This approach is also acceptable when you do address your letter to a particular person. However, the other approach, only possible when you address your letter to a particular person, differs in that instead of taking a "passive" role and expressing a desire to be called for an interview, you take an "active" role and state that you will call them to arrange an interview. There are obviously drawbacks and benefits to this approach, and you must use your judgment to determine if it is right for you in a particular situation.


Interview Tips

Once your BestResume resume has led to an interview, there are some basic tips to help you succeed in this next step of your job process:

Follow-up Letter

A follow-up letter, in which you send a note to the individual(s) who interviewed you, can distinguish you from the other applicants. The letter should be brief and hand-written, on a simple but formal "fold-over" note card. It should simply state that you enjoyed meeting with them on whatever date you interviewed, state something you found memorable about the job or company, restate how you could benefit the company, thank them again for their time, and state that you look forward to being a part of their company. (Note: If a secretary was particularly helpful to you, consider sending him/her a letter as well. Stories abound of how this clinched a job for someone. But beware of doing it simply for effect.)


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