What should I do if I’ve been incarcerated?
If you are reentering the work force due to incarceration consider constructing a functional resume. Functional resumes may help you focus on your skills and detract from your work history gaps. It can also allow you to focus on skills that you may have learned while incarcerated. For example some prison systems offer vocational training or jobs that you would have completed during your stay. Think of what skills or abilities you learnt during this time. Include them in your skills section. Also, if you entered without a high school diploma and gained your GED you can include this information in your education section.
How many pages should my resume be?
Resumes should be kept to 1-2 pages in length. Remember that your resume should be a marketing tool to help you gain the position. It should not be an autobiography. Focus on key aspects and skills when writing your resume to keep to the 1-2 page format.
Employers sort through a multitude of resumes when hiring for a position. Often times they are skimming the contents for keywords and phrases and not reading your resume in entirety. A lengthy resume can seem tedious and unmanageable for an employer therefore shifting you to the “no” pile.
Tips for Emailing A Resume:
- Make sure to follow the Company’s request on the format of your resume file. Typically employers prefer resume formats to be saved as a Microsoft Word Document or a PDF. In order to save your resume as a PDF select “save as” and change the “save as type” to PDF.
- Ensure that you name your document clearly and professionally when saving. Don’t just save it as resume.doc. Include your name so that the employer can clearly see the name of the individual submitting the resume. An example could be JohnDoeResume.doc
- When submitting your resume via email make sure to include your cover letter in the body of the email.
- Double check to ensure that you don’t have any spelling or grammatical errors within your email.
- In the subject line of your email message include the position that you are applying for
- Include a signature line with your contact information so the employer can get in touch with you easily.
What should I do if I don’t have work experience?
Think of experiences that you have had. Have you volunteered, held internships, or completed coursework relevant to the field. You could also list professional organizations that you may have joined in your area.
Utilize the skills or duties that you performed and highlight them in a functional resume format. Don’t be afraid to create a section on your resume that highlights this experience. A new section could be titled “volunteer experience,” “independent study,” or “professional organizations.”
What font should I choose for my resume?
- When choosing the font for your resume don’t opt for cursive, calligraphy, or other difficult to read choices. Remember that some resumes are read through applicant tracking systems that may not be able to decipher complicated fonts. Basic fonts such as Calibri, Verdana, Arial, and Times New Roman are the best to utilize.
- Avoid small font sizes. It can be tempting to minimize your font in order to fit more material or information. However, this can make it more difficult for employers and tracking systems to read. Font size should be kept between 10-12 in size.
- Don’t overuse bold, italicize, and underlines. Keep formatting consistent. For Example: If you bold one heading make sure to bold them all. Make sure all bullets are indented at the same spacing.