Resume Tips

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Resume Tips

A well-designed resume can make a tremendous difference in the success of your job search. Many qualified candidates are never considered simply because their resumes are incomplete or vague. We find that professional resume services and computer software resume packages are not effective for the engineering professions. For a seasoned engineer professional, a 4-page resume is not too long, and anything less might not reveal your true value. Never place any information on your resume that is deceptive or untrue.

Your resume should have the following elements:

Name, address, home phone number and e-mail address – On Every Page. If you do not want to be called at work, add a statement “No calls or voice mail at work number, please.” Work phone, cell phone and/or pager number are optional, but are very helpful to recruiters and employers.

A brief description of your career goals. NOTE: With today’s computer software, you can easily change your “goals” statement to suit the particular job you are seeking. This section should not be more than one or two sentences. Some resume experts recommend a long list of abilities and accomplishments, but this is not usually effective in the engineering professions. It is better to show specific experience, skills and accomplishments in your employment history.

A detailed employment history. This section should include employer name, location, dates, job title, type of business, job duties, types and dollar size range of projects, major accomplishments. It is not sufficient to simply list employers’ names and dates. Please don’t omit dates of employment. This raises a “red flag” with many employers. Be sure to note the following accomplishments where applicable: (1) Money you saved for your client or employer. (2) Major problems you solved. (3) New or repeat business you gained. (4) Any other job accomplishment of note. Start with your current job and work your way back.

Details on your educational background. Include colleges, degrees, graduation date, major/minor fields of study.

Details on registration/certification/memberships. List registrations, states of registration, certifications, memberships and licenses, such as Professional Engineer, Registered Architect, Certified Project Manager, and Licensed General Contractor.

Accomplishments. Include a brief description of one accomplishment that you alone or as a member of a “team” achieved with each job description (e.g. cost savings, innovation, overcoming a difficult situation etc.)

Computer skills. List all software you have used for design project management, scheduling, estimating, and/or business communications.

Personal data. Marital status, ages of children, willingness to relocate, hobbies, community service.

References. For reasons of confidentiality, you may not want to include references as a standard part of your resume. However, you should have a reference list available upon request. Your references should include former employers, co-workers, sub-contractors, architects, and clients. Provide both home and work phone numbers.

Project list. This in an essential part of your resume. Those with more experience should offer a project list as an attachment. Try to keep it down to 2 or 3 pages. Persons with less than 15 years experience can probably incorporate their project list into the resume. Include the following details about your most important projects: Project name or type of project, dollar size, brief description of work done, your job title and duties, dates, and your employer at the time.

Photos, sound files, or other add-ons. In this age of computers it is possible to add a photo or wave sound files to your resume. We do not recommend these devices for the engineering professions.

How to submit your resume. Most recruiters prefer to receive resumes as MS Word (.doc), or Rich Text Format (.rtf) or plain text (.txt) file attachments. If you wish to fax or snail mail your resume that is acceptable as well.