Whether you’re starting out fresh from college or looking to land a better position, there's no doubt that the job application process is a nerve-racking experience.
What Is a Resume and Why Is It Important?
A resume is a formal document that shows a potential employer your skills, education, and experience. In most cases, you’ll make a resume to apply for various job openings. A resume is usually required for a job application within a company or organization that doesn't rely on application forms alone.
The main purpose of a resume is to land an interview with a potential employer. As such, a resume is as a marketing document that allows you to make a great first impression on HR managers and potential employers.
5 Top Professional Resume Template Examples for 2020
We're going to show you the key sections of a resume and explain how to use them. But first, let's look at professionally designed resume templates from Envato Elements.
Envato Elements a great place to find attractive resume templates. Not only do these templates have gorgeous and professional designs, they also have all the necessary sections formatted correctly. All you've got to do is add your information.
Plus, for a low monthly fee, you get tons of extra design assets like photos, WordPress themes, fonts, and more.
Look at some of the best professional resume templates from Envato Elements that you can use in 2020 for all your job applications:
Use this professional CV resume template with a modern and fresh design for any type of job application. The template uses a standard two-column layout and lists skills and experience in an easy to read format. The template includes well-organized layers and image placeholders. Edit the template in Illustrator, Photoshop, Word, and even PowerPoint and Keynote.
The Intiny Resume template is a simple and unique resume template that would be a great choice for a college graduate. It's got plenty of space to include a resume summary or a personal profile as well as your education and skills. The template has image placeholders. Edit it in InDesign, Photoshop, or Illustrator.
If you’re looking for a clean and simple resume template, look no further than this template. It uses minimal colors and clean fonts that are easy to read. The template includes a matching cover letter. Edit it in Photoshop or Illustrator.
This template has a clean design split into two columns. Use the smaller column to list your contact details as well as your skills. The wider column is perfect for listing your education and experience. You can also add your own photo at the top. Edit the template in Photoshop, Illustrator, or Word.
The Resume CV Template 19 is a great choice if you’re looking for a bold template. This resume allows you to add your photo. It uses three columns to list your skills, education, experience, and a personal profile statement. You’ll also get a matching cover letter. Edit the template in Photoshop.
- Resumes35+ Best Professional Business Resume Templates (Company CVs 2021)Andrew Childress
- Resumes29 Best Contemporary Resume CV Templates (New Modern Styles for 2020)Andrew Childress
- Resumes29+ Modern Resume Templates With Clean (Elegant) CV Designs (2020)Brenda Barron
Find More Resume Templates on GraphicRiver
Another option for professionally designed single-use resume templates is GraphicRiver. It's a pay-as-you-go platform for creative assets. So, there's no need to commit to a subscription if you don't need it.
Now, let's dive into our main tutorial on what's a resume and what goes on a resume.
Resume Types and Formats
When it comes to resume formats, there are three standard resume formats:
- reverse-chronological resume
- functional resume
- combination resume
1. Reverse-chronological Resume
The reverse-chronological resume lists out recent or current experience first and then continues with the achievements in a reverse chronological order. This is the most common resume format that’s usually a safe choice in any situation.
2. Functional Resume
The functional resume puts more focus on your skills rather than your work history or experience. This resume is a great choice if you’re changing careers or if you've got gaps in employment. It’s also a safe choice if you’re fresh out of college and don’t have an extensive work history.
3. Combination Resume
The combination resume, as the name implies, is a hybrid format of the reverse-chronological and functional resume. The resume starts off with a summary of your skills and then lists the most relevant work history and experience.
This format is rather flexible. It’s considered to give recruiting manages the best of both worlds. Like the reverse-chronological resume, you can use this format in any situation.
Key Sections Each Resume Should Include
No matter what format you decide to use for your resume, the next step is to organize your resume and add the key resume sections. These include:
- resume introduction
- your contact information
- your previous experience
- your education and relevant courses or trainings
- any skills relevant to the job you’re applying for
Let’s look at each of these more in-depth:
1. Resume Introduction
The first section of your resume is the resume introduction. This section sets the tone for the entire resume. There are four different resume introductions you can use:
- Personal profile, which is the combination of career objective and qualifications summary. This introduction is a great choice for when you’re applying for a position in the same industry.
- Qualifications summary, which lists out what makes you the perfect candidate for the position by putting an emphasis on your skills. This is a great choice if you’re switching industries.
- Career objective, which is targeted towards a specific position and summarizes your objectives within the company you’re applying to. This is a great choice if you’re fresh out of college.
- Resume summary, which highlights your accomplishments. It's a great choice if you've got many work-related achievements.
2. Contact Information
Your contact information should be listed at the top or close to the top of your resume. Make sure to include your email, phone number, physical address, and your date of birth. Use this section to link to your LinkedIn profile or your personal resume website.
3. Previous Work Experience
This section should be the main part of your resume. It tells the employer where you’ve worked before as well as what duties you performed. This section should include your job titles, company names, and years worked.
4. Education and Relevant Courses or Training
When it comes to your education section, keep in mind you don’t have to include your entire education history. This section usually includes your college education or highest level of education completed.
Include your school names, degrees, major and minors. You can also include your GPA and relevant coursework.
If you’ve done any extra training that’s relevant to the job you’re applying for, you can include it in this section.
5. Skills Relevant to the Job Opening
Finally, include any skills that are relevant to the job opening you’re applying for. Keep in mind that this doesn’t mean you've got to stick only to skills that you’ve acquired as a result of your education. This can also include other skills that aren’t related to your job title but are valuable to a potential employer.
Once you've got these key resume sections, consider including other sections such as references, volunteer work, language skills, professional affiliations or memberships, and similar. Including these sections depends on the type of job you’re applying for. The most important thing is to tailor your resume to the job opening.
With that in mind, it’s always better to include the key sections first instead of including each professional affiliation or reference contact.
5 Quick Resume Design Tips
Now you know what resume formats are commonly used and which sections you should include on your resume. Yet another important part of your resume is the design aspect.
A visually appealing resume is more likely to stand out and catch the attention of recruiters. Here are five quick resume design tips that you can use as you design and write your resume:
1. Use Legible Fonts
Given that most recruiters will initially scan your resume, you want your resume to be as easy to read as possible. As such, you should use legible fonts and avoid using script or decorative fonts.
Another tip to keep in mind when using fonts is to stick to one or two fonts max otherwise your resume will look unprofessional.
2. Add Icons or Graphic Elements for Emphasis
If you want to emphasize certain parts of your resume, consider using icons or graphic elements like lines. The key thing here is to use them in moderation instead of every chance you get, otherwise you’ll achieve the opposite effect.
3. Use Color as an Accent
Make different parts of your resume stand out by using a background color or adding a colored line after each heading. Avoid using a ton of colors as this will make your resume look amateurish.
A good example of color use can be seen in this resume template from Envato Elements.
Note how the resume uses standard black text on white background and then incorporates shades of green for the section headings and contact information.
4. Add Your Photo
Consider using your photo in place of a logo. This will make it easier for your resume to stand out, not to mention it'll make it more personable. Use a photo that looks professional. Consider asking a family member or a relative to take the photo instead of taking a selfie.
5. Save Time With a Resume Template
Lastly, consider using a pre-made resume template to save time on resume design. There's no shortage of professionally designed resume templates on marketplaces like Envato Elements.
Envato Elements is a subscription-based marketplace where you can download thousands of beautiful resume templates as well as other design assets for a low monthly price.
What’s more, you can edit these templates to your liking and use them in an unlimited number of projects.
Another place where you can buy beautiful resume templates is Envato Market. Envato Market allows you to buy templates individually. So, it’s a great choice if you know exactly what type of resume you need and want.
Learn More About Making a Great Resume
The tips above are the tip of the iceberg when it comes to making a great resume. If you want to learn more about what a stellar resume should include and how to make it visually appealing, we've got plenty of tutorials to help you out:
- CareersHow to Make Your First Job Resume Stand OutCharley Mendoza
- ResumesHow to Write a Functional or Skills-Based Resume (With Examples + Templates)Charley Mendoza
- ResumesHow to List Your Education on a Resume (+Best Format Examples)Charley Mendoza
Create a Stellar Resume
We've just answered what's a resume and explained what goes on a resume.
To recap, your resume is a marketing document that you can use to make a great first impression on a potential employer. It’s a summary of your experience, skills, and education that shows them what makes you the perfect candidate for their job opening.
Make your resume clear and concise and don’t forget to make it visually appealing as well. If you need help with your resume design, check out our resume templates over on Envato Elements if you want to download as many templates as you want. If you want to grab a resume template quickly, stop by Envato Market and check out thousands of attractive resume templates there. Download your favorite today!
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