A lot of people feel overwhelmed at the thought of writing a resume.  It seems impossible to describe your entire career in a page or two....but that's thinking about the resume in the wrong way.  A resume is a dashboard of your experience.  It's not your life history.  The purpose is to quickly tell a recruiter that you have the qualifications to do the job.

Here are some Do's and Dont's for resume writing:

Do put your jobs in reverse chronological order.  Your last job goes first.  This helps the recruiter to easily follow your work history. 

Do put your education at the top of the page if you are a new graduate so that this can easily be identified.  However, if you are not a new graduate you may want to list your education towards the bottom.

Do identify your strenghts.  What skills keep coming up in job after job?  Those are your strongest strenghts.  Make sure to highlight them in your resume.

Do write a description of each skill/accomplishment.  It doesn't matter if you use bullet points, arrows, or use a period at the end of each line.  Truly it doesn't matter, just be consistent.

Do turn your accomplishments in to numbers.  Some departments have one person and some may have hundreds.  Quantify yours.  "Managed a department of 40 nurses" is a lot stronger than "Managed a department"

Now the Dont's

Don't write paragraphs.  The purpose of a resume is to be easy to read.  Recruiters like white spaces on resumes so they can glance at the resume and get the gist.

Don't share too much personal information.  I cannot tell you how many times I have received resumes with photos.....no matter how attractive you think you are, please don't.  No birthdates, religion, martical status, names and ages of children, etc.

Don't make the recruiter guess what your actual job was.  In today's world there are tons of overly descriptive job titles that don't actually make sense to most of us.  For example: "Talent Acquisition Specialist", write : Talent Acquisition Specialst ( Recruiter)

Don't make your resume too long.  One to two pages is generally the accepted length.  Anything longer may likely be overlooked.

Don't forget to proofread.  Get a friend to look at it and have them check for spelling, grammar, and consistency.  Does it make sense to them?

At Children's Mercy, you have the option to upload a resume during the application process.  You should still bring a few nice hard copies of the resume to the interview to have available for individuals that you will be meeting with.

So, what do you think?  If you have questions about building your resume, let me know.  Some companies will charge you a fortune for this advice, lucky for you mine is free!