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Resume writing

Looking for work? You’ll need a resume! We’ve got some tips to help you create a great resume.

Girl working on resume on laptop

What is a resume?

A resume is a written summary of your qualifications, skills and work-related experience.

  • It's an important tool in your job search efforts

  • Employers will require a copy of your resume when you apply for a job

  • Your resume is your first chance to impress an employer and show them that you’re the right person for the job



What do I put in my resume?

You might like to include:

Full name
Contact details – phone and email
Education and training
Work history and experience
Skills, abilities and interests

How can I make my resume work well for me?

Here are some tips for writing a good resume:

  • Keep your format simple and easy to read

  • Make sure your contact details are up-to-date

  • Tailor your resume to suit the job you’re applying for

  • Focus on the positives – your strengths, abilities and achievements

  • Include licence and transport if you have these

  • Proofread – check your spelling and grammar

What should I avoid?

Here are some things to avoid when writing your resume:

Personal information - date of birth, relationship status

Qualifications which are out of date or not completed

Reasons you left your previous job

An unprofessional email address

Exaggerating or making stuff up

Jargon, slang or negative language

Building a resume using your strengths and achievements

You might worry you fall short of the job criteria, but don't let that stop you! Try turning a weakness into a strength.

Here's some examples:

“I'm only young!”

I'm keen to work, willing to learn and looking for an entry-level position.


“I just finished school and don’t have any experience”

I did woodwork at school and I know how to use power tools safely.

I did a work experience placement at school and really enjoyed it.  


“I've never had a proper job”

I did babysitting for friends and family to earn pocket money while I was still at school.


“I don’t have any skills”

I've played a lot of sport and have great teamwork skills.


“I don’t have qualifications”

I'm really good with computers and I'd like to do a traineeship in IT.


“I didn’t do well at some of the theory-based subjects at school”

I'm a “hands on” learner who loves practical jobs.


“I don’t know what I have to offer”

I'm a reliable young person with a positive attitude and I'm available to start work immediately.

"Combine your strengths and achievements with a willingness to learn and a positive attitude!"

If you would like individual online support to help you reach your work and study goals headspace Work and Study Online can help.

This content was last reviewed 15/02/2018

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