Getting Your Resume Ready – An Overview

To a potential employer, your resume is who you are. Even before they meet you, they want to be able to see from your resume and your personal details what you can do and what you are qualified to do. Sometimes, even with good experiences, a bad resume can show a lack of organization and presentation limiting the chances of a employer setting up an interview with you.

So if you are just starting to look for an occupation in the health care field and have limited experience in writing resumes, here is a quick guide to a general resume format.

Your Personal Details
Obviously, the employer will want to know your name and your contact details should he/she want to contact you for further discussions. This section should always be at the top of your resume and be noticeable. The essential details to provide here are: Your name, your address, your contact phone numbers and your email address.

Some people would suggest to put your nationality, a personal website if you have one and your date of birth here too, however these are dependent on the job roles you are applying for and generally are not necessary.

Optional section: Personal Skills
This section is completely optional yet can provide better insight to who you are on paper. Things like patient focus and being an open and fast learner are things that can be put here, as well as any other extra skills such as interpersonal skills and computer literacy can also be included here if they can assist you with the job role being applied for.

Your education details
If you have just finished high school and are still in college, it is essential to list both your school and university details.

Note: any details requiring dates should always be listed with the most recent first, followed by the next most recent.

Your Employment History
If you have no employment history this section can be left out. However, should you be looking for further employment, you should be listing all your relevant employment here starting with the most recent.

it is important to format each of your employment entries to the same style, listing dates employed, the company or employer name, your position as well as a short description of what your job involved. This is a good insight to the employer on what you have done and if you are suitable for the job you will be applying for.

Extra Curricular Activities
Some people prefer to leave this section out. However, I personally think these activities give you a human side rather than just the professional you are. Employers can tell a lot from the activities you participate in and listing them down may aid you in securing that interview. Activities such as being part of the local basketball team, or volunteering with a charity on a casual basis are all helpful to your job search.

This is also a good section to list any organizations you are part of, such as being a member of the local Rotary Club for example.

Generally, you don’t need to list out your references yet on your resume. I tend to put “References will be provided on request” as employers would not be asking for your reference until they want to further your application. Make sure that you have at least two people as your references and preferably at least one professional reference.

The above is for a general guide only. It is recommended that you tailor your resume to the job you are applying for, and have a different resume for a different position. This way you are giving the right information to the right people and will not waste their time reading about things that will not concern them when it comes to the vacant position.

It is also a good idea to create two resumes, one comprehensive resume with all the description necessary, and one brief, one-page resume in case the employer specifically asks for a concise resume only. It’s best to be on the safe side and prepare either way.