Make The Perfect Resume and Get Hired | Free Resume Tips and Examples

Make The Perfect Resume and Get Hired | Free Resume Tips and Examples

 

Ah, the perfect job! Finally, after months, or even years of sticking to that position you probably hate, you found ‘the one.’ It’s time to market yourself, so you rush to your computer and pull up the latest copy of your resume. You have probably scrolled through your document for the umpteenth time. Are you worried that your CV won’t get noticed?

Remember, a perfect job does not require a brilliant resume, you need THE PERFECT ONE! Crafting it can be extremely tough. There are so many different formats, fonts, and styles that it becomes overwhelming to find the right one for you. Moreover, with the advent of technology, you need to be updated with how the Applicant Tracking System (ATS) works. So where do you start? The answer is HERE!

We know resume writing can be hard, but it doesn't have to be! If you're struggling with resume content or formatting, then fear not! In this blog post, we are going to give you resume tips that will help land you your dream job, insights on what makes the perfect resume, and how to create one yourself!

Top 10 Ways to Write Your Resume Like a Pro

It's never too early to start preparing for your job search. If you're looking for a new position, it's important to have your resume ready and up to date. With this in mind, we've compiled ten tips that will help you write the perfect resume. From fonts to formatting, we will reveal the best strategies to avoid the most common mistakes people make when writing their resumes. Get ready to dramatically improve and make your resume professional and polished!

  1. Know the basics of ATS. According to a study by Glassdoor, every corporate job advertisement attracts about 250 resumes. For this reason, Hiring Managers and Recruiters continues to adopt new technologies, such as the Applicant Tracking System (ATS), to source and employ the most qualified applicants, especially in Australia where competition grows fiercer. As a job seeker, it is very crucial to stay updated on the tricks and methods which potential recruiters use during the hiring process for this allows you to be one step ahead of other aspirants.

Speaking of ATS, this type of software has been widely used across the globe to help recruiters and employers gather, sort, inspect and rank job applications. How do they do that? Well, the Applicant Tracking System deconstructs your resume into groups and searches for specific keywords. Every job post has a set of keywords and the best way to gather them is by examining the description and conducting research.

To give an example, let us say that you are applying for a Content Writer position via Seek. Hop on to the ad’s Qualifications and Experience/Requirements section and learn about what a potential employer wants, such as:

Resume Example 1

Based on the example given, we can extract a few keywords, such as technical writer, journalist, and high volume and high-quality content. If you think that you have all the desired skills and traits of an employer, you may include these keywords in your resume by strategically placing them across your document.

  1. Test your resume format. Now that you are aware of the Applicant Tracking System or the ATS, it is best to put your resume to a test. There are some instances when your document can’t be properly read due to the complex format you are using. So, try to find a dependable free online ATS tool. Or, to avoid wasting your precious time, email us a copy of your latest resume then we will review it for FREE and send you valuable insight.
  1. Don’t forget to add your contact details. A resume is about placing your information in the most strategic and ideal way. People often fail to include listing their contact details and assume that it’s okay. No, it isn’t! Let’s say you have everything it takes to secure the job. Now, how will your future employers contact you? Of course, through the contact details on your resume. Therefore, make sure to have them on your header. Additionally, they MUST be updated.

Here is a perfect example:

Resume Contact Details Example

As you can see, your name must be the first thing a potential recruiter should see, so it ought to bear the largest font on your resume. We also suggest that you use an appropriate, active, and formal sounding email address, not your ilovekoalas123@yahoo.com nor your iheart (whoever artist you love) @gmail.com account. Additionally, include the link of your updated LinkedIn profile for it can help attract recruiters and provide them more insight on how professional you are.

 

  1. Highlight your key strength. Sometimes it can be hard to figure out how to feature all your valuable skills and experiences without making it seem like a laundry list. Writing this information on your resume doesn’t have to be a daunting task. Instead of simply listing down what you can do, make sure to highlight and demonstrate them.

For instance:

Resume Before Skills example

As a job seeker, you know that the first impression is everything. In the example above, you can notice how the skills are simply listed in a boring way. Probably, your reader has read so many similar applications, so how can you stand out? The next example will show you how to write an attention-grabbing skills section:

Resume After Skills example
  1. Stay away from generic information. The most persuasive resumes, CVs, or other application documents are those focused on one’s Employers don’t want to know your responsibilities from your previous jobs, they want to learn how you have excelled at them! So, get rid of the position-description type of information on your resume and switch to a result-focused format.

To illustrate, we have provided two different examples: 

responsibilities and contributions examples

 

Obviously, we would all be drawn more towards the second example for a tangible result has been provided.

TIP: Metrics do the trick! They can give potential employers insight into how valuable you are.

  1. Choose a professional font and eye-catching formatting. After passing the gates of ATS, your resume will then reach the eyes and fingertips of a human and the challenge does not end there. Did you know that Hiring Managers and Recruiters do not even spend a minute to skim over your document? If you are lucky, your resume and cover letter might get a maximum of 30 seconds of fame! By choosing the appropriate font and size, you can get your readers hooked on your files.

According to Indeed, these are the top 3 best fonts to improve your resume’s readability:

  • Arial
  • Cambria
  • Calibri

Additionally, not what many people know is the power of white spaces or negative spaces. They are the empty sections on your resume. Aside from being visually pleasing, white spaces can improve the readability of your document. Tactically positioning them on your resume can amplify the impact of words and help your readers easily locate vital details.

  1. Dodge recruitment biases. A side-effect of being human is our unnecessary judgement. Have you ever had a job interview and felt like the interviewer was not listening to anything you said? Or maybe they were distracted by your ethnicity or gender. Sadly, this is because of unconscious bias - people will often be less engaged with someone who matches their own demographic group. This can lead to unfair hiring practices in companies that need to take steps against it.

As an applicant, it is best that you familiarise yourself with the biases involved in the hiring process. Some of the most common are concerning culture, age, education, and so much more. One effective strategy is to avert including information that may trigger these biases.

  1. Take advantage of resume power words. With the voluminous applications received by hiring managers, they have read the words managed, created, led, and responsible for so many times that they just have lost their impact. Hence, ditch them and let’s get creative! Leverage active words that will surely get your application noticed.

Instead of using the verb “led,” you can use “orchestrated,” “spearheaded,” and “oversaw.” Skip the word “created” by using the words “formulated,” “generated,” and “established.”  Remember that knowing which words to use and which words to avoid can make the difference between getting an interview or having your resume ignored.

  1. Proofread, refine, and repeat. Every job seeker wants to be able to present themselves in the best light possible. After spending hours writing your resume, you might be tempted to hit the “send” button without proofreading it. Don’t be! That can lead to some embarrassing mistakes.

Prior to sending your resume, take some time to read and re-read it again. This can help guarantee that your document is grammar or spelling-error free! You can use proofreading programs and tools, such as Grammarly, ProWriting Aid, and Ginger Software. If you are on a budget, you can also try to have one of your trusted or experienced colleagues have a look at your resume and cover letter.

  1. Tailor your application. Every job advertisement requires a specific skill set. Therefore, no two resumes must be identical. As an applicant, you must spend time researching the company you are eyeing. Make sure that your resume can easily convey to the potential employer the reasons why you are qualified for that job that they are advertising. Additionally, you can also add a tailored cover letter that matches your CV or resume.

 

Here's an example of a Perfect Resume:

PROFILE
A business-oriented, dynamic, and highly respected senior leader with over 20 years of experience across strategic operations management, customer experience, and business development. Offering the ability to build organisational capability through people and systems while demonstrating a proven history of negotiation, procurement, and client management expertise. Skilled in leading high performing teams to deliver business objectives while increasing profit margins, improving efficiency, and optimising growth opportunities.
RECENT CAREER HIGHLIGHTS
  • Revenue Management: Improved market position and established XXX as the preferred customer choice by leveraging professional associations and industry expertise and developing lucrative professional relationships with community leaders and key industry players.
  • Business Growth: Achieved a return of 10% YoY growth for XXX by implementing new customer pricing across XXX stores, leveraging essential account management skills, and carefully managing market spends of approximately $380K.
  • Strategic Planning: Provided industry expertise and feedback as one of the leading Global Remittance players, participating in groups with industry associations and regulatory bodies such as XXX and XXX.
  • Risk Management: Served as an active member of a Regional Governance group, providing a quarterly update to the Board of XXX on business and operational risk management to ensure business continuity in both countries.
  • Compliance: Initiated a global compliance program, partnering with regional and central compliance teams and addressing policy/process improvements, delivering the best customer experience.
  • Commercial Management: Derived revenue margins of 10% by leveraging commercial negotiation and contract management skills and nurturing the relationship with an existing key partner and 7 new retail and digital partners.
  • Sales Management: Amplified business growth by 60% and expanded the network across 5 Pacific Island countries by effectively partnering with vital strategic businesses in the area.
  • Negotiation: Optimised regional cost by 20% by realigning administration resources, aligning with a new vendor to offer broader service value and increasing the XXX staff engagement with the product.
  • Cross-Functional Teamwork: Expanded the XXX network by piloting the community consultant model with 2 community leaders, resulting in the onboarding of 15 new agents in 1-week and 20% incremental volume growth.
  • Relationship Management: Successfully renewed a commercial contract with the largest state-owned bank in XXX, resulting in business continuity across 18,000 bank branches and 14% of the XXX network.
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
  • Master of Business Administration (MBA)
  • Bachelor of Engineering
PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE
Regional Head (Australia, New Zealand & Oceania) | XXX | 03/2019 – Present
Provide high-level regional leadership and strategic advice supporting organisational goals to amplify revenue, enhance people and culture, financial management, information technology, and communications. Contributions include:
  • Delivered regional priorities of $30M in revenue by collaborating with cross-functional leaders and providing business performance and inputs to the Executive Leadership team, supporting regional business growth.
  • Optimised marketing spending and corridor expansion by developing and executing the Go-To-Market strategy across Australia, New Zealand, and Oceania region, with key partners.
  • Grew XXX's distribution and volume by 20% with white spot mapping and working closely with the partner sales organisation, resulting in the acquisition of 100 new ethnic retail stores.
  • Acquired 5 new partnerships in Australia in the first year, delivering an incremental revenue opportunity of $2M by leveraging business development skills to provide a customer-centric solution to a high standard of excellence.
Business Development Manager | XXX | 01/2018 – 02/2019
Led teams across Australia, New Zealand, and Oceania region, including Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, Palau, and Saipan, while overseeing business growth, people management, strategic partnerships, and performance. Contributions included:
  • Recognised for outstanding performance as the recipient of the Excellence Award.
  • Delivered network expansion through strategic and collaborative partnerships in existing markets, including leading expansion into 4 newer countries in the region across retail and digital product channels.
  • Streamlined the agent's onboarding process through continuous engagement with functional leaders, effectively reviewing the business environment and introducing alternatives, such as direct agent model and digital partners.
  • Established 5 new strategic partnerships with a projected incremental net revenue of $500K per annum, including developing a strategic relationship with 5 community leaders to act as Brand Ambassadors.
  • Achieved incremental revenue growth of 90% by spearheading the rapid addition of the direct agent network and adding 100+ new agents in 12-months.
  • Improved revenue margins by concluding commercial discussions with one of the top XXX providers, including ongoing contract negotiations and integration.
Business Development Manager | XXX | 07/2017 – 01/2018
Provided high level professional and executive leadership, including implementing processes and seeking opportunities to optimise revenue, process efficiencies, and performance outcomes in line with strategic goals. Contributions included:
  • Delivered new business sales of $412K with gross revenue of $104K in 12-months by contributing to the acquisition of 10 major clients, thereby optimising the customer's expense cost and focusing on law and aged care firms.
  • Delivered incremental sales pipelines, leveraging superior relationship-building skills to represent the company and engage key decision-makers monthly XXX events, further generating revenue opportunities of more than $500k.
  • Maximised cross-sell and up-sell opportunities by improving category opportunities and instigating customer interest, including holding quarterly customer reviews to highlight savings opportunities and efficiencies.
NSW Account Manager | XXX | 05/2015 – 06/2017
Managed an account portfolio of 300 clients valued at $500k, including building professional relationships and industry networks while delivering 10% revenue growth. Contributions included:
  • Secured a $1M ongoing contract by leveraging new business development skills, acquiring 29 new customers that contributed $300K annually in new business revenue, maintaining revenue margin over 20%.
  • Optimised revenue margins by 5% by identifying cross-sell opportunities in new categories and offering a customised solution to the client to increase monthly sales.
  • Developed cost comparison and savings template to demonstrate savings opportunity among prospective clients using the XXX product range to simplify their decision-making process.
National & Regional Manager| XXX | 08/2011 – 02/2015
Directed business expansion and strategic direction to achieve revenue growth while overseeing the National and Regional team in various countries, such as India (9), Sri Lanka (6) and the Maldives (3). Contributions included:
  • Delivered 6% revenue growth against a target of 3%, raising $15M for West India, Sri Lanka, and the Maldives by collaborating with XXX and deploying marketing investment focusing on growth and continual improvement.
  • Facilitated a successful joint program resulting in revenue growth to Sri Lanka from Canada (29%), Qatar (21%), France (20%) by leveraging specialist knowledge and industry expertise with a commitment to service excellence.
  • Gained incremental revenues from XXX inward remittances by expanding new products to Sri Lanka, working with cross-functional teams, including development, marketing, operation, projects, finance, treasury, and IT.
  • Presented 2 key recommendations resulting in the successful rollout across the XXX network, delivering 600K revenue growth (10%) against the country growth of 5.5%.
  • Renewed the XXX Contract with exclusivity intact, no change in commission structure, and nil sign-on bonus, securing 80% of XXX business by participating as a team member of the strategic Think Tank initiative.
  • Received accolades and recognition from the Managing Director, Country Director, and Marketing Director for demonstrating core values and leading a country-level Consumer program that delivered 9% Year-on-Year growth.
  • Renewed a 5-year exclusive contract with 3 bank partners, including the XXX largest state-owned bank, leveraging commercial and negotiation skills optimising 3% revenue margin while securing over 26% of the volume.
Strategic Business Development Manager | XXX | 12/2008 – 06/2011
Operated within the strategic Business Development team, engaging CXOs of a broad range of financial institutions to forge partnerships for insurance distribution by leveraging active customer bases. Contributions included:
  • Forged opportunities within 4 chemical, fertiliser, and gas distribution companies by delivering alternate product distribution channels and establishing pilot programs with government entities.
  • Secured partnerships with 6 banks and XXX, delivering an industry-first achievement with an incremental annual revenue of $20M and access to over 3 million customers.
  • Developed partner pitch and RFQ documents to cater to the government procurement processes by working closely with product and marketing teams.
  • Developed 10 cross-sell opportunities in Group Insurance, product handballing to a specialist team leading to an incremental revenue opportunity of $5M.
References and further career history are available upon request.

 

Pros And Cons of Using a Resume Template

Finding a job can be difficult and time-consuming. Aside from that another dreadful part of the application process is drafting your CV, cover letter, and selection criteria responses. Therefore, many people choose to use resume templates in order to save themselves both the trouble and time spent creating one from scratch. However, there are pros and cons of using a template that you should take into consideration before making your decision.

Aside from saving time, one advantage of using a resume template is producing an organised document. A formatted resume is key to a successful job search. Resumes that are filled out appropriately will give you an advantage over other candidates with messy application documents. With a well-structured file, hiring managers and recruiters can easily navigate through your document and pick up your essential skills. To add, using a template makes sure you have everything filled in.

Additionally, the best way for you to make the best first impression is only through your resume. Portraying your skills, talents and experience in the best possible light can make all the difference when it comes time for hiring decisions. A good and deliberate resume template can aid you to paint an accurate picture of what kind of professional you are and why employers should hire you. Moreover, if you get stuck, don't worry! Templates are always very easy to fill out. Some of them can even grant you the freedom of modifying your document to best meet your requirements. With a resume template, you don’t need to be a specialist to build a CV from scratch!

Despite that, using generic templates also possess a handful of drawbacks. For example, using a FREE online resume builder can produce nothing more than a mediocre output. You will not be able to stand out for you are using the same template which hundreds if not thousands of other aspirants have taken advantage of.  In addition, online generated resumes only allow you to customise them to some extent. Since they are free, you lose your ability to be creative due to the restrictions they have. As an example, many of these builders only allow you to save your file into a PDF format; making it very hard to further improve or update your resume. Moreover, despite being aesthetically pleasing, many resume templates are not ATS-friendly due to complicated formatting, thereby leading to you receiving an unsuccessful message from prospective employers.

With this said, before settling for a resume format, consider the pros and cons. Unlike the traditional resumes, the application documents we send today must please the applicant tracking systems before finally reaching hiring managers and recruiters. Thus, if you have time, it is still best to formulate a resume from scratch rather than relying on these online freebies that can compromise your job application.

Entry-Level Resume Guide

“As a fresh graduate, how can I stand a chance against experienced professionals?” This is a question often asked by newbies. Yes, the industry might be very competitive but that doesn’t mean that graduates must feel hopeless. Fret none for your resume is here to the rescue!

Our “firsts” are the experiences we tend to keep in our memories for a long period of time. They are very special and often make us anxious. Now that you are ready to unlock your first career, it’s time to finally create your application documents. As a fresh graduate equipped with theoretical knowledge, how do you tell these hiring managers that you are ready to take on a new chapter in your professional life? Well, it is through the right words and details that you include on your resume!

To cover up your lack of experience, your resume for your first job must feature your other key attributes, such as your education, the soft and hard skills you acquired over time, and the activities you have taken part in like volunteering, part-time jobs, or even your internship. Before making your way into the job market, better ask yourself these questions: 1. What does the employer want? 2. What am I good at?

Your answers to these questions can help you craft the perfect entry-level resume even without experience! As soon as you know the job requirements and you are confident that you can meet them, you can start addressing these on your resume. Let’s say, an ideal candidate must possess customer service skills and you once worked as a store assistant, then you can mention this on your resume:

  • Met and exceeded customer satisfaction by leveraging communication and customer service skills in assisting over 15 clients daily.

To better demonstrate, here are some critical sections to include in an Entry-Level Resume:

Personal Details

Cross-check your details and make sure that email addresses are appropriate for a professional audience.

Profile Section

In this portion, you can creatively, yet formally introduce yourself within 4-6 lines. Here, you can state your personal qualities, what you can offer the company, what skills you have that are relevant to the position, and your eagerness to learn. Here is an example:

Profile Example

Skills Section

The skills you list are what can make or break your application. These are what you can confidently do and what an employer can expect from you. Therefore, you must include the skills that are relevant to the job. If you have an experience that can demonstrate them, it is best to include them instead of merely listing your abilities down. Here are some tips you can consider:

  • Don’t go overboard the top. To learn more about the best skills to include on your resume, go to the position description and selection criteria, then pick three to 8 skills/knowledge sets required.
  • Don’t list. Demonstrate! After choosing the skills to include, it is best to back them up with hard evidence. For example, if they are looking for customer service skills, let them know that you 'responded to approximately 50 calls per day with a professional phone manner, including responding helpfully to their queries.' The specific nature helps to demonstrate your skills. Furthermore, for each skill heading, construct 1-2 lines starting with action words or skill level. For example, instead of saying that you have 'good communication skills, you could say, "Fluent in 3 languages, including Japanese, French and Mandarin with natively written comprehension across the scope of the English language.'
  • Add Metrics, if possible. Quantify your level of skill by giving an example of your level using the STAR technique. For example, 'Communication: Wrote a series of 3 scientific reports as part of academic study, resulting in securing a high distinction for the unit and positive feedback in the level of accuracy and quality content.'

Here are some examples of skills a Career Highlights/Tailored Skills List:

  • Teamwork: Collaborated with 4 group members to generate a Python script using data analytics that was ranked “very useful” by 20 users.
  • Prioritisation: Strong time management skills with the ability to negotiate with colleagues regarding task allocation.
  • Technology: Proficient in using technology and has competency across many software applications such as the Microsoft Office Suite, Salesforce, Teleconferencing platforms, and data analysis software.
  • Strategic Planning: Highly developed foresight and planning skills to set objectives and determine the optimum course of action, focusing energy and resources to strengthen operations toward common goals and adjusting the organisation's direction in response to a changing environment.
  • Written & Verbal Communication: Presented reports to up to 20 graduates within tutorial groups, using audience-specific language to convey research findings.
  • Project Management: Strong organisation skills to drive high performance, use appropriate judgment and expertise, support smooth operations, and meet project deadlines easily.

Professional Development

In this section, you may include your previous employment or your voluntary works which are relevant to the job advertisement. If you have successfully completed an internship program, you could include that experience in this section. You can also list your memberships and affiliations. To add, make sure that you list your most recent experience first and incorporate specific achievements you have contributed.

References

Referees should be able to provide comments on your academic abilities, vocational skills, and personal attributes. Always seek their permission first and do not include more than three. For bonus points, can send them a copy of your resume so they are clear on dates and the tasks you did in the role, especially if it was more than 3 years ago. It is also a good idea to keep them informed so they can look out for a call. 

Pro Tip 101:

Graduate or experienced, if your resume doesn’t get past the ATS filter, then it will never even reach a real person who might be able to hire you. So, to increase your chances, look at the job advertisement to give you a clue about the keywords the recruiter may be using. For example, let’s say you were looking for a sales and marketing manager role, you may find terms such as "marketing" or "business development," in addition to more generic ones like “management experience." For these keywords to work, they need to appear in your work experience section, at least once. NOT 10+ times or too frequently enough that it seems spammy.

Entry-Level, Experienced, or Executive: How the Perfect Resume Can Help You

We all know how challenging it is to land your dream job in today's tough economy. Our job market is extremely competitive, and recruiters are inundated with resumes from qualified applicants. If your resume does not stand out, it will be quickly lost in a sea of other candidates who have more experience and better qualifications than you do. After reading thousands of resumes and hiring hundreds, as well as speaking to other industry recruiters, our team knows that most applicants are missing at least one key element in their resumes which is keeping them from getting hired for jobs they want.

To create a professional-looking resume, one that will get you more interviews faster, The Perfect Resume team is here to help! We want your resume to be noticed in a positive way! So, if you are struggling with your CV template, wondering why you are not getting calls from recruiters or scratching your head to figure out if your resume parses the ATS, we’ve got answers for you. Call us at 1300 217 374 or send the latest copy of your resume to info@theperfectresume.com.au and our team will happily review everything about your current document. We will check every corner and bit of your application document, including its formatting and content, before providing advice on a few areas where improvements must be made to boost your chances of finding new employment opportunities. What is holding you back? Book a FREE consultation today!

 

Other Blogs That May Help

What are the examples of resumes that have landed an interview?

Here Are Some Hot Tips on How to Write a Resume

How do you make a resume in Australia?

Here’s How Your DIY Resume Is Falling Short with Recruiters

  Interview-winning resumes

 How to write a resume in Australia

 How to make a resume in Australia

 Here's how your resume is falling short with recruiters