What should be included in a resume

When going on a job search, a resume is a candidate’s first opportunity to make a good first impression. A hiring manager will comb through a stack of resumes and will select a few of them to study and then to set up an interview, the opportunity to make a second good impression that, hopefully, will lead to a hiring offer.

What should be included in a resume? One example divides into an opening paragraph that consists of what skills the candidate brings to the open position with a list of job experiences. The hiring manager would be able to note that the candidate has a solid work record as well as a set of skills, some of them soft people skills, that may make the applicant a good fit for the position,

The section that seems to be lacking in the example is a description of the applicant’s education record. The second example includes the candidate’s educational background plus a paragraph of his or her skill set, but no work record.

The truth of the matter is that a resume is incomplete if it does not include all three things, education, work experience, and a paragraph describing a skill set. Remember, the resume is something that represents the candidate to the hiring manager. It consists of the candidate’s background that would argue for a hiring decision. He or she is likely looking for someone who can fit the open position easily, with a minimum of training and orientation.

Finally, always include a cover letter with the resume. The cover letter introduces the candidate to the hiring manager, expresses an interest in being picked for the open position, and helps to establish a personal connection between the candidate and the manager who will decide who will fill the position. The resume provides information on the candidate’s background and skill set. The cover letter is a reminder that the candidate is a human being.