How to Write Your First Resume

Home Jobs How to Write Your First Resume

Want to Score Free Cash?

  • Survey Junkie: Earn up to $50 per survey with one of the highest-paying survey sites on the web. Join Survey Junkie Now
  • SoFi Money: Earning money for unlocking better features sounds like a dream. But this free banking app really pays you $100 with you switch your direct deposit to SoFi Money. Get SoFi Money.
  • Aspiration: This mobile banking app lets you do everything for free and takes no fees — ever. Better yet, if you join through this link you can get $100 in your new account.

Learn how to write your first resume so you can land your first big job. We'll teach you the basics and how to get the style and formatting just right. Learn how to make your resume stand out to recruiters and hiring managers.

The US saw an increase of 164,000 new jobs in April alone and the unemployment rate amongst graduates has remained stable at approximately 4% for a few years – yet there is no reason to relax. Statistics only show that there are positions being made available and filled.

What they don’t tell you is how many of those graduates are landing the job of their dreams. Whether you decide to use a resume writing site or to go it alone, you need to know what good looks like.

While there are high paying jobs out there, it is vital that your resume makes you stand out in the right way. It is vital that you get the right start to set you up for life.

Here are some tips when you are writing a millennial resume:

skills for resume
Image Source: The Balance Careers

Style and format

Resumes have no set format and this can lead to candidates interpreting this as a license to do whatever they feel on paper. While there are some niche positions where a visual bombardment will stand out in the right way, these are few and far between.

Want Free Money?

  • Aspiration: Want to get spotted a $100 for free? Simply sign up for Aspiration, and the free banking app will give you cash for free, you just relax while it gives you $100 just for opening a new debit card. There’s no catch. This bank account is legit and only takes two minutes to sign up for an account.

With resumes, conformity is key. Human Resource departments will only spend a few seconds looking at your application before moving onto the next. If they don’t see what they want they will simply pick up the next one after giving your file a cursory look.

When creating a resume, keep in mind that there are a wide range of templates available online to choose from. These are recognized formats that resume-reader software and HR departments are familiar with.

They also have the advantage of guiding you through the construction of your application. These are good, but you may also wish to consider using a professional service to help you create your resume. If you wanted to go that route, consider using My Perfect Resume, they allow you to create a perfect resume in just minutes and it’s fast and easy (pick a template, customize and download it).

write your first resume

If you decide to just go it alone then keep it as simple as possible. Pick a readable and professional-looking font such as Times New Roman or Arial and use it throughout.

Keep the formatting simple and do not overuse bold, italics or underlining. Sometimes it will look better to get emphasis by increasing from 12 point to 14 for a title or name rather than underlining it. Never go beyond two pages– keep it short and to the point.

No two resumes are the same

Resumes should be crafted for the position being applied for. The skills and experience you highlight will be specifically tailored to what is required by the employer.

Before you start to write your resume you will need to know who you are writing it for. Job applications typically will have job descriptions or even descriptions of the skills and experience wanted from a successful candidate.

These tables are your framework for both your resume and cover letter. Some roles will go as far as to tell you where they will be looking for evidence of you meeting that skill (interview, resume or cover letter).

If you are applying speculatively or the company has not provided a description of this type then it is important that you research what the role will entail and use this information to inform your construction.

Order it correctly and highlight your strengths

You are just starting out and you won’t have several positions to discuss and show off about. This doesn’t mean that you have nothing to say.

Want To Earn Easy Money?

  • Survey Junkie: Earn up to $50 per survey with one of the highest-paying survey sites on the web. Join Survey Junkie Now
  • Mistplay: Earning money by playing games on your phone sounds like a dream. But this app really pays you for playing new games with cash rewards. Download Mistplay for Free (Android only).
  • Robinhood: This investing app lets you trade stocks and do everything for free and takes no fees — ever. Better yet, if you join through this link you can get a free stock like Apple, Ford, or Sprint when you join (must complete signup).

In a conventional resume the candidate would lead off with their work experience in reverse chronological order (starting with the most recent first). Unless you have relevant and strong work experience you will want to leave this section until later.

For your first resume you will need to lead off with your qualifications and education history. Did you go to grad school, law school, or get an MBA? Include grades and GPA if they are good, otherwise just give details of what was studied.

Craft your resume to suit the position – you will include your whole education on every version but which essays, feedback and course content you highlight will depend upon what the role needs.

Next, focus on your skills and related experience. Are you IT competent? Have you got leadership experience from scouting or other voluntary activities?

If you are used to working to deadlines, employers may have forgotten that aspect of college life, so remind them. If you have ever organized an event, describe it. Look at what they want from an employee and find something from your life to match it.

Get the basics right

It doesn’t matter how good you are, basic mistakes will cost you a job. Read everything carefully, check the spelling, grammar, and formatting.

Once you’ve looked at it close up, look at it from a distance. Don’t focus on the words anymore but the style, does it look clean and professional, or is it busy and childish? Have you included your name and contact details on both pages? Have you tailored it to their job?

If you’ve got a cover letter is it addressed to the right company throughout? Have you used advanced and recent formatting that older versions of Word will struggle to render?

Remember many companies, especially in the government sector, will only upgrade operating systems and software when it becomes absolutely necessary.

Keep it simple. Don’t include any photographs, references or personal objectives, and only have a link to your blog if it is well written and relevant.

Final tips

Construction of your resume needs to start in high school. As soon as you know what sort of job you’d like, you need to gather experience for this. Join clubs, lead events, take part in things and volunteer. Model United Nations events, scouting, student newspapers and even shadowing of people doing a role you want are all useful. Make a note of things as you go along so that you can refer back to them at a later date.

If you are faced with writing your first resume now and lack this experience, it isn’t too late. Speak to your former teachers and your parents – often they will remember your past much better than you did. Get stuck in and volunteer now, ask to shadow people and do the research. You may be late to the party but it is important to show you are still prepared to go the extra mile. Keep it simple. Keep it clear. Keep it focused.

The Best Apps to Save You Real Money

We are on our phone a lot, right? Wouldn't it make sense to save money with the best money saving apps?

AppAt a glancedownload
aspirationAspiration
★★★★★
Get a $100 bonus at Aspiration when you open and fund an account with $10 or more. Then use your Aspiration debit card to make at least $1,000 worth of cumulative transactions within 60 days of account opening.
CLAIM $100 BONUS
robinhoodRobinhood
★★★★★
Open a new account in the next 24 hours and you could get up to $200 in free stock.
CLAIM FREE STOCK
Truebill reviewTruebill
★★★★★
This free app delivers on its promise to save you money effortlessly. You can use it to lower your bills, cancel unwanted subscriptions and bill negotiations.
SLASH YOUR BILLS

About the author

Brian Meiggs
Brian Meiggs
Brian Meiggs is a personal finance expert, and the founder of My Millennial Guide, a personal finance site helping you put more money in your pocket. He helps millennials follow the smart money in order to increase their earning potential and start building wealth for the the future. He regularly writes about side hustles, investing, and general personal finance topics aimed to help anyone earn more, pay off debt, and reach financial freedom. He has been quoted as a top personal finance blogger in major publications including Yahoo! Finance, NASDAQ, Discover, MSN Money and more.

On a similar note...

Explore More On

7 Best Bank Bonuses and Promotions of March 2021

ImageDescriptionlearn-more
aspiration★★★★★This Company Will Give You $100 for Opening a Free Account
Boost your savings and earn up to 1.00% APY interest on your savings. Get up to 10% cash back on your purchases. Get $100 bonus when you spend your first $1,000 with your new Aspiration Plus Card.
COLLECT $100 BONUS
personal capital★★★★★
The First and Only Interest Earning Crypto Account
Receive up to $250 Bitcoin bonus when you make qualifying deposits over the first 30 days. Receive up to 8.6% annually on your crypto. Join the most trusted financial services for crypto investors on the market.
CLAIM $250 BONUS
personal capital★★★★★Get Up $200 in Free Stock for Joining
Commission-free stock, ETF and options trades. Get a free stock worth up to $200 when joining (must complete application). Simple, easy to use investor platform with no account minimums.
GET FREE STOCK
sofi★★★★★All-In-One Investing That's Easy to Use
Tired of Robinhood? Invest in stocks, ETFs, crypto, or automated investing in all one app. No commissions for stocks and ETFs. Complimentary access to SoFi Financial Planners.
INVEST NOW
personal capital★★★★★The Smart and Free Way to Manage Your Money
Take control of your finances with the perfect union of technology and highly personalized service. Get access to free online financial tools, including retirement planner, investment checkup, net worth calculator and more. Digital-first wealth management advisor with 24,000 clients in 50 states.
SIGN UP FREE
blooom★★★★★401K and IRA Management
Start your free 401k and IRA management now. Find and reduce hidden fees. Improve your diversification.
GET FREE CHECKUP
cit★★★★★Enjoy the Benefits of a CIT Bank Money Market Account
A CIT Bank Money Market Account helps you get more from your savings with interest rates for maximum growth. Earn over 7x the national average with high-interest rates. It now pays to open a money market account with CIT Bank.
OPEN ACCOUNT
My Millennial Guide