How to prepare a Good Resume ?
Interview Preparation

How to prepare a Good Resume ?

Your resume is your first interface to the company, and Let me make it clear that about 75% of the resumes are rejected in the first 5 seconds by the HR persons. Can you imagine how many candidates apply for a single opening in an MNC in India? It is over a whopping 2000! And most of them are not even called for a written round! Do you know the reason??

Almost, 15 lakh Engineers are produced every year in India alone, and it has been found that only 20% of the engineers are employable. About 5 lakh engineers struggle for a year or two to get an IT job. Now ask yourself? Where do you fall?? In the first 20% or the rest 80%! And if you are amongst the employable candidates,

Shouldn't your resume reflect your employability factor?

As mentioned earlier, most of the resumes do not even make it to the interviewer's hand. In such a case, the most important thing to focus upon is that "Your Resume should be PERFECT!", It should reflect professionalism, clarity of thoughts, and how organized you are.

Here is a detailed guide to creating a good resume that will leave a good impact on the HR or your interviewer

Resume Structure

How should we organize our Resume? What should be the flow? Is the Resume of a fresher and an experienced candidate different? 

These are some of the most common questions related to Resume Structure.

Let me answer the last Question First, YES! the resume of a fresher should focus on his academics while for an Experienced candidate, the emphasis should be on his area of expertise, his experience, and his projects. So the resume structure is a little different. We will provide a sample resume too, but before that go through the resume structure discussed below:

Fresher's Resume Structure:

  1. Career Objective: This section describes your aim and aspirations. It should be unique, Do NOT copy it from any sample, please! Just try to think about what you want to do in your career and what qualities in you can benefit the company.
  2. Academics/ Education: You can make a table with the following headers:
    Degree, University, College, Percentage/CGPA and year of Passing and then populate the rows with the latest degree first i.e. first B.E, followed by 12th and then 10th or you can write the academic details in a clear paragraph format.
  3. Technical Skills: Mention the subjects that you are good at. Categorize them into Programming Languages, Web Technologies, DBMS software, and your area Of interest. Be careful about what you have written in this section because most of the questions will be asked from whatever you have mentioned in this section.
  4. Achievements/ Extra-Curricular Activities: Mention any awards that you have won, or extra-curricular activities like, Participated in Stage Drama, Created a website for the college, participated in an All India Paper Presentation Competition, etc.
  5. Academic Projects: Mention the projects that you did as part of the college curriculum or any personal project that you made. Do not forget to mention the duration of the project, Name of the organization if you have done it as part of the internship, Team Size, and a small 3-4 lines Description.
  6. Personal Details: This section should contain personal information like your date of birth, your Father's Name, your postal address, your hobbies, etc...

Experienced Resume Structure:

An experienced professional's resume should focus on his experience but also provide his background details like professional degrees, university, and college, year of passing, etc. There is absolutely no need to mention the academic projects. So the Resume structure for Experienced professionals is:

  1. Career Objective: The career objective should be more specific in case of experienced professionals, it could include the technology that you have worked on, etc.
  2. Technical Skills
  3. Experience: This section should contain the company wise experience starting with the latest. Provide brief information about the projects and technologies you have worked on in the previous companies. This section differs based on the type of company you have worked in i.e. Product Based Company like Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Aricent, Alcatel Lucent, Huawei, or Service Based Company like TCS, Infosys, Wipro, etc
  4. Achievements / Extra-curricular Activities: When you are experienced, this section should also include the awards that you won while working, your associations with professional organizations, and the seminars and presentations that you conducted. All this should be followed by your college level and school level achievements.
  5. Academics/ Education: You can make a table with the following headers: Degree, University, College, Percentage/CGPA and year of Passing and then populate the rows with the latest degree first i.e. first B.E, followed by 12th and then 10th.
  6. Personal Details: This section should contain personal information like your date of birth, your Father's Name, your postal address, your hobbies, etc...

Do's and Dont's

  1. Do not overcrowd your resume, allow for plenty of white space.
  2. Keep your resume to one or two pages whenever possible.
  3. Do not use different fonts, choose a standard font like "Times New Roman" and stick to it.
  4. Do not overuse italics, underlines, capitalization, or other emphasizing features. Though using it a few times is allowed where you want to draw the interviewer's attention to it specifically.
  5. If you have highlighted something in your resume, be prepared to face a lot of questions on it.
  6. Be well prepared for your Achievements section. The interviewer would definitely ask questions related to them and may ask for proofs.
  7. Make sure that your Name, Mobile Number and Email address are present on your resume, preferably at the top of the first page.
  8. Use good quality Bond paper to print your resume. Do not use photocopy quality papers.
  9. Print on only one side of the paper.
  10. Do not use colors on your resume.
  11. Mention alternate phone numbers just in case your primary number is unreachable.
  12. Do not mention that you know Windows 10 and MS Word, under your technical skills, unless you are not aware of the Windows internals. Everybody knows to work on Windows!
  13. Mention your personal details like your Father's Name, Date of Birth, Permanent Address, etc. on the last page.

Resume should be Concise

Your resume should not be too long but should provide a lot of information clearly and in a few words. It should be brief but comprehensive. Avoid using large paragraphs.

Avoid making silly mistakes

Avoid Spelling mistakes:   Carefully read your resume a number of times and cross-check the spellings of each word. Ask your, friends to proofread your resume. Do not use difficult words that you do not use generally.

Be careful about "the" and "teh", which is one of the most common spelling mistakes. 

Avoid Grammatical Mistakes:   Grammatical mistakes are major turn-offs and in a resume, they can prove disastrous.

Here are a few mistakes to look for in your resume.

  1. Do not switch tenses within your resume.
  2. Capitalize all the proper nouns in your resume.
  3. When expressing numbers, write out all numbers between one and nine (i.e., one, five, seven), but use numerals for all numbers 10 and above (i.e., 10, 25, 108).
  4. If you begin a sentence with a numeral, spell out that numeral (e.g. Eleven appreciation awards during my previous job).
  5. Use a consistent Date Format, i.e. 11/12/2001 or 11 Dec 2001 or 11-12-2001
  6. Do not interchange words like:
    • All right and Alright,
    • Affect and Effect
    • Personal and Personnel
    • Its and it's
    • Role and Roll
  7. Use action verbs such as "developed", "managed", and "designed" to write about your accomplishments. Do not use sentences like "I developed abc and xyz" or "I worked on ". As far as possible, Do NOT use "I" in your resume anywhere.
  8. Avoid passive constructions, such as "was responsible for managing college fest". Just say, "managed college fest": that sounds stronger and more active.

 I hope that this article would have given you a lot of insights into what a good resume should look like and what information you must include. Obviously, the resume might differ for different roles but the overall idea would always remain the same. All the best!