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Writing a professional resume

1) What is a resume?

A resume is often used in the job searching and hiring process. It includes your educational background information and qualifications. It should be clear and easy to read since the goal is to communicate why you are qualified based on your skills and experiences. You want to create a resume that is professional, relevant, and reliable.

2) Resume formats

There are three types of resume formats;
- Reverse Chronological
- Functional/ skill-based
- Combination

Reverse chronological resume format

It is ideal for people with plenty of work experience relevant to the position they are applying for. It is the most popular type of resume format.

Functional/ skill based resume format

Students or recent graduates mostly use this format since they lack relevant work experience or looking for a career change.

Combination resume format

Suitable for job-seekers with a diverse skill-set. Useful for applying for a role requiring expertise in 3 or more fields.

3) Resume layout

Your resume layout is the first thing an employer notices. It is paramount that your resume's format captures the employer's attention.

Below are some resume layout guidelines;

- An excellent professional resume should be of considerable length, around 1-2 pages. Be sure to capture all the essential details.
- Use clear headings.
- Use adequate spacings, especially around the margins.
- Use an excellent easy to read font.
- Use the right font size.
- Save your resume as a PDF.

4) Tips to follow when writing a professional resume/ checklist


Since you are applying for a job, it should be obvious you want it. You can get into details about how passionate you are, especially on your cover page

Be brief

Be straightforward and. Only talk about relevant details that will get you the job. Be sure to include your specific skills.

Avoid unnecessary information

Only give necessary information. For security purposes, do not include your bank details and address.

Make it straightforward and clear

Use simple, standard, and easy to read language; it also applies to fonts and layouts. Avoid writing in the first or third person.

Be professional and discreet

Make sure you have a professional email account and a current phone number that you can be reached at.

Keep to the employer's requirements

Keep to the conditions provided in the job description. Adhere to the needs, and you will be one step ahead of any other applicants who do not.
Some other tips include;
- Make sure there are no grammar, punctuation, or spelling errors.
- Do not use graphs, tables, or columns in your resume.
- Highlight skills and accomplishments using keywords in the job description.
- Do not use generic resumes.
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5) Resume sections

A standard professional resume should consist of the following section; these are considered to be the main sections that should not be absent in your resume;
- Your contact information
- Summary
- Employment history
- Skills
- Educational background
Other sections or categories include;
- Achievements and milestones
- Volunteer work
- Awards you have received
- Hobbies and interests.
- References
Some questions you have to ask yourself when writing these sections of your professional resume is as follows;
- Whether it will increase your chances of getting hired
- Whether it will create a positive impression on your employer
- Whether it is appropriate for the job description

Contact information

Write your contact information at the top of your resume. It should include; - Your name
- Your phone number
- Your email address
- Physical address (optional)
Providing this information helps the employer to keep in touch with you if you get the job.


The summary section is where you get the chance to add some color and give insight into your personality. You should also demonstrate your determination and passion for the position here.

Employment history

Mention your job experiences starting from the most recent, including volunteering or internship. Use bullets where possible and avoid lengthy descriptions. Mention skills and achievements you have acquired. For each position you have mentioned, outline the following;


This category is where you show how competent you are for the position you are applying for. Do not mention skills unrelated to the job descriptions provided. It is a good idea to rate your skills since it exudes confidence and creates trust.

Educational background

List your degrees or levels of education, starting with the most recent. Highlight relevant coursework to give insight into your skills and knowledge.

Achievements and milestones

List all your accomplishments and recognitions, whether from your previous employers, clients, or certifying authorities. Do not shy from listing your achievements, no matter how small.

Volunteer work

It is worth mentioning some of the volunteer work you have engaged in, including your internship.

Awards you have received

Similar to the achievements section. Mention all the rewards you have received, if any.

Hobbies and interests.

It is also worth mentioning the activities you like doing for fun; this provides insight into your personality. Consider mentioning interests that are relevant to the job you are applying for.


Do not list your references on your resume. It is preferable to write your references on a different sheet from the one you have written your professional resume.

6) Proofread

Once you are through with your professional resume, it is prudent to go through it from the beginning to the end to ensure there are no grammatical, spelling, or punctuation errors. You can ask a friend or family to proofread once more to be sure. A third party may reveal new information that can be useful. If your professional resume is more than 1 page long, you can find options to make it shorter, for example, removing filler words. For more information on our services at affordable prices, visit our website

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