Eastfield College Logo
The mission of Eastfield College is to provide excellence in teaching and learning.

HOW TO WRITE A RESUME

Your resume is your marketing tool. The resume will not get you a job, but it may get you an interview. There are several formats for resumes. There is no perfect formula.

  • Remember: Everything in your resume needs to be focused toward the job you are trying to obtain.
  • You may have several different resumes—a paper version called a “presentation” resume, a plain text version to e-mail, one for scanning, and a HTML version if you have a webpage.

WHAT TO INCLUDE IN YOUR RESUME

HEADING: Center your name, address, city, state, zip code, and phone number.  Include e-mail address and your webpage address, if applicable.  Be sure your e-mail address is professional.

OBJECTIVE:  Your objective is the position for which you are applying.  Be specific.  Do not be vague.

Example – Specific:     “Office Assistant" or "Seeking a position as an Office Assistant”.
Example – Vague :        “Looking for a position that offers opportunities for advancement".

QUALIFICATIONS:  List the items that qualify you the most for the job you want, such as computer knowledge, communication skills, leadership, etc.  Each item you list needs to link you to the position for which you are applying; it needs to prove you’re qualified.  This is a very effective section, especially if you are applying for a job in which you have little or no paid work experience.

EXPERIENCE:  List your most recent job first and then list earlier jobs in reverse chronological order. Include company name, city, state, dates of employment, and your position or job title.  Do not include company address, phone number, supervisor’s name, or reason for leaving.  Give a brief description of your job duties, responsibilities, and accomplishments. The job description should be two-three lines in length or use bullet points.  Your work history can be limited to the past ten years.  You may go beyond that time frame if you feel it will help you obtain the job.  List any awards or certifications you may have received at your employment.  Again, list all job descriptions that will focus your past toward the job for which you are applying.

EDUCATION AND TRAINING:  List your most recent educational experience first. Include school name, city, state, name of degree, major, and GPA if higher than 3.0.  If you have not yet received a degree, then you may list some of the courses taken if they are related to the job for which you are applying.  If you have been out of high school for a few years, do not list your high school education unless you received honors or awards, or you have no college education to list. 

SPECIAL SECTIONS – volunteer work, associations, certifications, awards, scholarships, etc.:
Special sections such as these can be adapted to your specific situation.  List college or outside activities in which you are, or have been, involved.  Be sure to list any memberships with professional organizations or clubs.  List any offices you held with these organizations.  In this section you may also list any honors, achievements, or scholarships.  List volunteer experience in the same way as you listed paid work experience. 

REFERENCES:  Simply state "References and Additional Information Available Upon Request" or do not include this section.  Companies will request the information if they want it.  Be prepared to provide it if they ask for it.  Use a separate page for your references.  Be sure to ask permission before you list anyone as a reference.  You may be quite embarrassed if you do not! 

 

Provided by Eastfield College Career Exploration Room
3737 Motley Drive, Mesquite, TX 75150
Room C-138       Phone: (972)860-8310
www.eastfieldcollege.edu/careers

 

SAMPLE RESUME

Casey Smith
1289 Main Street
Dallas, Texas 75289
E-mail: casey_smith@xyz.com


OBJECTIVE:   Administrative Assistant

SUMMARY OF QUALIFICATIONS

  • Microsoft Office—Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint
  • 10-key by touch
  • File management
  • Professional telephone skills; multi-line phones
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Work cooperatively with a wide range of personalities

EDUCATION


Eastfield College: Mesquite, Texas
Associates of Applied Science Degree (In Progress)
Major:  Executive Assistant
2012 - Present
Expected graduation date—May 2014.  Current GPA of 3.5.
Courses completed include:                      
  • Word Processing and Spreadsheets (Microsoft Word, Excel, Access)
  • Business & Professional Presentations (Microsoft PowerPoint)
  • Desktop Publishing for the Office
  • Administrative Office Procedures
  • Records & Information Management
  • Business Correspondence and Communications

Tyler Junior College:  Tyler, Texas
2011 – 2012
General studies

EXPERIENCE

Administrative Assistant
A & B Real Estate:  Dallas, Texas                                                               2012 – Present
Greet clients, answer phones, prepare correspondence,  schedule appointments and locate files for ten real estate agents, and assist with showing homes to potential buyers.

Student Assistant—Social Science Division
Tyler Junior College:  Tyler, Texas                                                          2011 – 2012
Greet visitors to the office, answer multi-line phones, type documents for fifteen faculty members using Microsoft Word, filing, and other general office duties.

MEMBERSHIPS

Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society

References Available Upon Request.


HOW TO WRITE A COVER LETTER

  • Everyone who sends out a resume should include a cover letter. A well-written cover letter can get the employer’s attention and motivate him/her to read your resume carefully.
  • If a resume is e-mailed, the cover letter can be the body of the e-mail message or be attached as a separate document. Follow the employer’s instructions.  Place the title of the position you are applying for in the subject line of the e-mail.  Be sure to include your contact information at the end of the e-mail. 
  • Before you write your letter, carefully research the organization, easily done using Google or Yahoo.  Recruiters complain about job seekers’ lack of knowledge about their organization.
  • Keep the letter brief, yet informative; never more than one page.  Explain the reasons you are interested in the company and state why you are qualified—your most relevant skills, education and experience.  Look at it from the employer’s point-of-view; what would he or she think is most relevant?  Comment on what you like about the company and the job based on the research you’ve done.  Express how you can benefit the company. The following format is suggested.

FORMAT

Your Name
Address
City, State, Zip

Date of Writing

Name of person to whom you’re writing
Job title of person to whom you’re writing
Name of Company
Street Address
City, State, Zip Code

Dear _______:   (Address the letter to the person who could hire you.  If no contact name is known, you may state "Dear Hiring Manager.”)

First Paragraph—Introduction:  Identify the position for which you are applying and how you heard about the opening.   

Second Paragraph—Specifics:  Mention what you know about the company (based on the research you’ve done.)  Describe how your qualifications match the job you’re applying for. Be specific and present concrete proof that will support your claims about your qualifications.   Connect how your past employment, skills, and knowledge will benefit the company and would make you a desirable employee.  Use terms and phrases that are meaningful to the employer.  If you are applying for an advertised position, use the requirements that were listed in the ad but be sure you meet those requirements.

Third Paragraph—Closing:  Conclude by thanking the employer for considering you for the position.  State how you will follow-up with the employer.  Provide phone numbers and e-mail addresses where you may be reached(Very Important Hint:  Be sure your answering machine or voice mail has a professional greeting without any music!)

Sincerely,

(Leave 4 blank lines here for your signature.  Sign your name in black or dark blue ink.  If e-mailing the cover letter, include your contact information.)

Your typed name

SAMPLE COVER LETTER

Casey Smith
1289 Main Street
Dallas, Texas 75289
234-584-6839
casey_smith@xyz.com

February 20, 2013

Barbara J. Smithgood
Director of Human Resources
J.B. Matherly Consulting
5901 Main Street
Dallas, TX 75201

Dear Ms. Smithgood:

I am interested in applying for the Administrative Assistant position you currently have listed with the Dallas County Community College District job listing system.  While researching companies in the Dallas area, J.B. Matherly Consulting emerged as having a strong organization, an excellent training program, and a solid reputation.  This position seems to fit very well with my education, experience, and career interests.  I would like to take this opportunity to present my qualifications to you.
 
I completed my Associate in Applied Sciences degree in Business Office Systems and Support/Executive Assistant from Eastfield College with a GPA of 3.8.  While at Eastfield College, I was recognized for my academic achievement through various awards and scholarships which are detailed in my enclosed resume. I have worked in a busy office environment with multiple phone lines and a large staff.  I have experience with a variety of computer software programs including Microsoft Office and QuickBooks. In addition, my communication skills are excellent and I truly enjoy assisting clients. 

I would be pleased to have the opportunity to talk with you in person about this position and how my skills could be utilized at J.B. Matherly.  I will contact you in a week to discuss scheduling a possible interview time.  Should you wish to contact me, I can be reached at 234-321-4758 or by e-mail at Casey_Smith@xyz.com. Thank you and I look forward to speaking with you soon.

Sincerely,

Casey Smith

Casey Smith

Enclosure


HOW TO WRITE AN AFTER INTERVIEW THANK YOU LETTER

After an interview, you should always immediately write a thank you letter to the interviewer.  This always makes a good impression with employers.  Not sending a thank you letter also makes an impression, but not a good one!  Keep your letter brief and use it to remind the interviewer of the reasons why you are a good candidate for the position. The letter may be a hand-written note, a business letter as shown below, or if necessary, an
e-mail.

FORMAT

Your Name
Address
City, State, Zip Code
Phone

Date of Writing

Name and Title of Person
Name of Company
Street Address
City, State, Zip Code

Dear _______:   (You should always address the letter to the person with whom you interviewed.)

First paragraph:  Thank the person for the interview and restate the position for which you interviewed.  Once again, link a description of how and why you are qualified for that particular position.

Second paragraph:  Restate why you are interested in working for this employer and connect how your past employment and knowledge will benefit the company. Review some of the topics that were discussed in the interview.  Show the interviewer how the company can utilize your abilities. Use tangible proof that will back up your presentation of your qualifications.

Third paragraph:  Thank the person once again for the interview and then state any closing remarks to help you get the position.  Inform the interviewer of your desire to work for the company and your availability if he or she needs additional information or would like to set up another interview.  List phone numbers and e-mail addresses where you may be reached.

Sincerely,

(Leave 4 blank lines for your signature.  Sign your name in black or dark blue ink.)

Your typed name

SAMPLE INTERVIEW THANK YOU LETTER

Casey Smith
1289 Main Street
Dallas, Texas 75289
234-584-6839
casey_smith@xyz.com

February 28, 2013

Barbara J. Smithgood
Director of Human Resources
J.B. Matherly Consulting
5901 Main Street
Dallas, TX 75201

Dear Ms. Smithgood:

I would like to thank you for the interview this past Monday for the Administrative Assistant position at J.B. Matherly Consulting.  I truly appreciate the time and care you took in telling me about the job and learning more about me.  It was a pleasure talking with you and learning more about J.B. Matherly and its corporate culture.  I believe my qualifications and experience can be put to good use within your organization.

In addition to my enthusiasm for working at J.B. Matherly Consulting, I will bring to the position excellent computer and communications skills, office experience, and the willingness to do what it takes to get the job done.  I will contribute a solid work ethic and good judgment to this position. I understand your need for administrative support and with my attention to detail and organizational abilities, you will be freed up to deal with larger issues in the office. With the countless demands on your time, I am sure that you require people who can be trusted to carry out their responsibilities with minimal supervision and I know that you can count on me.
I look forward to hearing from you concerning your hiring decision. Please feel free to contact me if you need more information about my qualifications.  I can be reached at 234-321-4758 or by e-mail at Casey_Smith@xyz.com.  Again, thank you for your time and consideration.

Sincerely,

Casey Smith

Casey Smith

HOW TO WRITE A REFERENCE PAGE

  1. Before listing anyone on your reference page,first contact the person and ask permission to list him or her as a reference. Explain what position you are seeking and bring the person up to date on what you’ve been doing.   If possible, send your references a copy of your resume.  Failure to take this first step can lead to some embarrassing experiences.
  2. List a minimum of three references.  References can be college instructors, ministers, former and current employers, or others who can attest to your skills, dependability, and ability to handle responsibility.  Friends and family should not be used as references.
  3. Include as much as possible of the following information about each reference:  Reference’s name, title, company or organization, business address, city, state, zip code, business telephone and e-mail address.  Always include the telephone number.  Most employers will not write or e-mail to check references but they will always call.
CASEY SMITH
1289 Main Street
Dallas, Texas 75289
234-584-6839
E-mail: casey_smith@xyz.com

REFERENCES

Dr. Julie Adams, Vice President of Sales & Marketing
Alcatel-Lucent
1225 N. Main Street
Richardson, TX 75081
234-999-4054
E-mail:  DrAdams@xyz.com

Mr. Carlos Gonzales, Director of Human Resources
Hewlett-Packard
5400 Sherwood Drive
Plano, Texas 75589
234-204-9000
Carlos_Gonzales@xyz.com

Dr. Drew Jones, Professor of Computer Science
Eastfield College
3737 Motley Drive
Mesquite, TX 75150
255-893-3853
Drew_Jones@xyz.com

Provided by Eastfield College Career Exploration Room
3737 Motley Drive, Mesquite, TX 75150

Room C138     Phone: 972-860-8310
www.eastfieldcollege.edu/careers

Educational opportunities are offered by the Dallas County Community College District without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, genetic information, gender identity or gender expression.

 

p:handouts/How to Write a Resume 2013.docx (revised 9-10-13)