Resume writing

Very few of us get excited by crafting or updating our resume, but it’s usually a necessary evil to move forward. While the internet is over-flowing with templates and examples, keep in mind that regardless of the format you choose, there’s core info which should be covered.

1.      Fear not the white spaces: Keep the text well spaced so it can be skim read. Avoid fancy fonts and only use headings and bold text to highlight key information.

2.     Less is more: Preferably one page, two pages max.

3.     Missing career-relevant work history? Think what you do outside of study and leverage other skills and experiences, including:

  • writing blogs, developing websites etc (include links);
  • competitions (design and photography awards, Kaggle, entrepreneurship events etc);
  • participation in university clubs and/or meetup groups;
  • volunteer efforts;
  • casual and part time work – highlight the evergreen, transferable skills i.e. customer service, work ethic, insight into how businesses work and;
  • passionate about an industry? Use an assignment or other project to highlight your industry knowledge i.e. current developments or issues.

4.     References: Ensure that you seek permission from any referees you’re listing. Touch base if it’s been a while since last contact.

5.     Read it out loud: Spelling and grammar errors torpedo credibility. Printing out a copy and reviewing is an extremely effective way to identify mistakes.

6.     Minimise white noise: Birthday, middle name, marital status and religion are irrelevant.

Finally: Refresh your CV every six months, even if you’re not job hunting because it’s pretty painful to remember everything you’ve done after a year has flown by. If nothing else, keep rough notes of any new skills or experiences.


Skeleton resume structure:

Header: Name, address and contact details

Objective: Two – three lines summarising how your skills, ambition and experience provides context.


Dot points listing:

  • Degree/s and majors, expected completion.
  • Any other diplomas or short courses.

Employment history (start with the most recent experiences)

  • Job title
  • Company
  • Year/s worked i.e. September 2014 – December 2015
  • Focus on outcomes when possible as opposed to tasks (present as dot points, written in past tense).

Extracurricular or volunteer activities: If you have any relevant paid or unpaid experience, highlight the role/s, skills and key results.

Skills: Include languages spoken, software packages, programming languages etc.


Ever wondered what your education, skills and experiences are worth?

Check out Adzuna’s Value My CV

Upload your CV and Adzuna’s data crunching will estimate what you should be getting paid.