Building a Resume/ Sample Resume

Resumes are a necessity in the job-seeking process. It’s essential to have a high-quality and current resume prepared and on hand whenever a potential employer might ask for one. Most employers will formally require that you submit a resume at some point in the application process. Even when it’s not formally required, nearly all businesses will be pleased to accept a resume when you are applying for a job. Your resume may be your best opportunity to sell yourself to an employer before an interview.

Photo of sample resume
Photo of a sample resume

Resume Development Tips

Follow a General Format

Use consistent formatting and always provide the same information for every job you list. Include the month and year of each task, job, activity, accomplishment, or certification. Be consistent about formatting for dates. Use a legible, professional typeface, a clean and uncluttered layout, and a basic heading structure.

Keep to a Standard Length

For most job seekers in the early stages of their careers, a one-page resume will be the normal size required and preferred by employers. Employers often have dozens or even hundreds of resumes to go through for a single job—they don’t have the time to read through a long resume making sure they’ve caught all of the important points. One of the most critical parts of resume development is ensuring you have made it easy for them to quickly see everything about you. You might find that the first draft of your resume is longer than a single page. In that case, ensure your writing is as clear and to the point as possible. Next, take a look at your font size, margins, and other formatting options and make adjustments so your full resume fits completely and legibly on one sheet. As your career progresses and your work history grows, longer resumes will be acceptable and expected.

Always be Accurate

Never lie on your resume. Businesses regularly perform fact-checking on applicants before hiring. If it appears that you have misrepresented your accomplishments or the facts of your past employment, your application will be dismissed and your reputation will suffer. If you are hired and it is later discovered you lied or misrepresented yourself on your resume, most employers will immediately fire you.

Maintain Your Resume

Keep your resume up-to-date because you never know when a job opportunity will pop up. It is important to make sure your contact information is accurate and appropriate.

Use a Professional E-mail Address

Your email address should be formal and standard such as your first initial and last name or your first name and last name. If necessary, create a new email address through a free email site (such as Gmail, Yahoo, or Outlook) and use it for applying for jobs. It might seem like a small thing, but it is important always to present yourself professionally. Employers will not hesitate to dismiss a resume due to an inappropriate email address.

Customize Your Resume for Each Job

Once you have developed a solid master resume it is a good idea to customize each resume you submit to suit each specific job or employer.

Adjust and edit your work history based on the position you are applying for.

Provide the most detail for the jobs that are most relevant and downplay positions that are not relevant. If you have gaps in your employment history, make sure you have thought about how to explain them. As well, if you had to take a position or positions that don’t apply to your career goals (e.g., because of a bad job market/economy, or if you lived for a time in a location that did not have good prospects in your field, etc.), downplay them on your resume and think about how you will explain your circumstances to a potential employer.

Put your best foot forward by ordering the sections. Suppose you have a strong work experience for a specific job, but not as much relevant educational experience. In this scenario, putting your educational experience above your work experience would be a good idea. Analyze your resume and decide which category most applies to the job.

Get Feedback from Others

Ask someone who is sighted to review your resume for formatting and other issues. This can be helpful to any person developing a resume, as they are difficult documents to perfect.

Accessible Resume Builders

Hloom Resume Templates are accessible and great for building a resume that fits your particular needs. If you know of other accessible resume builders we may have missed, feel free to contact us at [email protected].

Sample Resume

Sally Q. Forth 2001 Some Street Somewhere, TX 78700 | 555.707.0000 | 555.707.6666 (fax) | [email protected]

Educational Experience:

2001A.A., Computer Science, Austin Community College, Austin, TX
1998Anderson High School, Austin, TX

Work History:

Job Duties: Managed campus computer lab, assisted students with lab work, monitored equipment to insure that students were not misusing items, and answered operational questions.
Dates of employment: 9/99-5/01Supervisor: Dr. Martin Wise
Job Duties: Managed campus computer lab, assisted students with lab work, monitored equipment to insure that students were not misusing items, answered operational questions.

Special Skills:

  • Computer literate (IBM compatible equipment; Microsoft Word, Excel, Access; Internet research skills)
  • Office equipment (copying machines, fax machines, telephone answering machines and voice mail systems, etc.)
  • Spanish—proficient speaker, excellent writing skills
  • Volunteer work in the local community as a parks guide and museum docent
  • Peer tutor to students in high school (math, computer science)

References available upon request

The Job Seeker’s Toolkit

This article is based on the APH Job Seeker’s Toolkit, a free, self-paced, comprehensive, and accessible guide to the employment process.

This article and The Job Seeker’s Toolkit are based on the 2nd edition of The Transition Tote System, by Karen Wolffe and Debbie Johnson (1997, American Printing House for the Blind).