The Most Important Rules For Creating A Resume

by Jaineel Aga

This chapter is a free excerpt from The Best Book on Getting Consulting Jobs In India.

For starters, follow 1 cardinal rule when applying for jobs in the U.S., India or elsewhere - make your resume one page long. This was the first piece of advice I received during my internship interview at Ernst & Young. Like the other engineers at my college, with little guidance and no formal resume creation workshop, I sent a resume that was 2 pages long.  My interviewer at E&Y was very kind to provide this as feedback, but not hold it against me in the interview.

Make sure to have a good look and feel of your resume. I've seen many resumes that are cluttered or untidy, to the point where it's visually unappealing to even scan through the materials. As a rule of thumb, no consultant will spend more than 30-60 seconds on a particular resume. If you're not able to segment your key takeaways in 30 seconds, you've lost an opportunity. There may be great experience hidden in the lengthy text sentences on your resume, but that's lost if it wasn't effectively communicated to the reviewer.

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For starters, follow 1 cardinal rule when applying for jobs in the U.S., India or elsewhere - make your resume one page long. This was the first piece of advice I received during my internship interview at Ernst & Young. Like the other engineers at my college, with little guidance and no formal resume creation workshop, I sent a resume that was 2 pages long.  My interviewer at E&Y was very kind to provide this as feedback, but not hold it against me in the interview.

Make sure to have a good look and feel of your resume. I've seen many resumes that are cluttered or untidy, to the point where it's visually unappealing to even scan through the materials. As a rule of thumb, no consultant will spend more than 30-60 seconds on a particular resume. If you're not able to segment your key takeaways in 30 seconds, you've lost an opportunity. There may be great experience hidden in the lengthy text sentences on your resume, but that's lost if it wasn't effectively communicated to the reviewer.

The resume should make it visually easy to browse through your achievements, leadership qualities, and extracurriculars. I differentiated the look and feel of my resume by creating a format that wasn't used by anyone else in my program.  It was the best way to present my resume at that time. The format should always be something that suits you as an individual. I didn't have a lot of work experience, but for someone with a lot of that, a format emphasizing work experience would work better. Make sure you don't have flowers or fancy coloring; as a rule, avoid anything that distracts the reviewer from the core content. After the length and the visual aspects comes the most important part: the content.

There are certain rules for effective communication of the content. Are you an experienced worker, or are you a fresh grad out of college? Based on your experience there are certain rules on what should go up front and what has to go afterward.
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