young woman working on resume with a specialist

Make your resume shine

These tips will help you avoid the most common errors on resumes and help you make a great first impression. Before submitting it, double check your resume for mistakes or missing information.


  • State the type of position you’re looking for in the top one-third of your resume
  • Show how you’re a good fit for the position in your skills section
  • List your experience in chronological order, from most recent to the oldest
  • Check that you have accurate months and years noted for the time periods you were active in each work, school or volunteer experience
  • Note your high school name and city (and your GPA if it’s above 3.5) if you are in school or graduated within the past five years and have not completed a higher level of education
  • Include your most impressive award or honor
  • List your technical skills, starting with the most important, and focus on skills that are needed for the position you’re applying for


  • Ask at least one to three family members or friends to review your resume and let you know if they have suggestions for improvements
  • Confirm you’re using correct spelling and grammar
  • Make sure your font style is consistent throughout
  • Check for a balance of white space and text
  • Try to keep it to one page when printed

Contact information:

  • Include your first and last name at the top of the resume
  • Use a professional-sounding email address (, for example) not a current employer’s email address or one that uses your nickname
  • List a phone number that you check frequently that has a professional and appropriate voicemail message


  • Save your resume as a Word document or a Rich Text Format file, not as a PDF, for online submission; some online application systems can’t read PDFs, and you want to make sure all of your information is accessible to your prospective employer