What Are Perfect Resumes? (With Steps and Examples)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 25 May 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

A tailored resume improves your chances of impressing employers and progressing your job application. Writing a perfect resume requires an understanding of the most effective ways to highlight your professional skills and experiences. To perfect your resume-writing skills, it may be useful to learn more about what a strong resume includes. In this article, we explain what perfect resumes are, provide a step-by-step guide on how to write an effective resume and give two detailed examples to help you craft your own.

What are perfect resumes?

Perfect resumes are resumes you customise to a specific job. Their purpose is to show the recruiter how your skills, experience and education make you a suitable candidate for a role. A perfect resume emphasises what you can contribute to a company. It focuses on specific and measurable accomplishments that demonstrate your value as an employee. Reading the job description carefully may help you write a well-crafted resume that showcases your strengths, relevant experiences and professional skills.

How to write a perfect resume

You may use the following six steps to guide you as you write your resume:

1. Read the job description

A perfect resume is specific to a particular position, so it's useful to study the job description before writing your resume. Pay attention to what duties the role involves, the necessary qualifications and the desired skills. If these match your own strengths and experiences, mention them on your resume to present yourself as the strongest candidate.

If you're a recent graduate, consider focusing on relevant education and skills. If you have work experience, consider focusing on past roles that show your suitability. Research the company that's advertising the role to gain an idea of its values and culture. This may help you decide which achievements or personal qualities to include on your resume.

2. Choose a format

Choosing a suitable format helps you show potential employers what your strengths are. The three most common formats are reverse chronological, combination and functional. The reverse chronological format lists your employment history from most to least recent. This format is effective for candidates with several years of relevant experience. It draws the recruiter's attention to the depth and longevity of your career.

If you're new in the field, consider using the functional format. This highlights your education, skills and other life experiences. You may also consider the combined format, which lists both your skills and your experience. This format is useful if you have a diverse job history and skill set. It may also be suitable if you're applying for a role that combines several unique skills. For instance, a graphic design role may require sales experience, administration and knowledge of print media industries.

Related: What Is the Difference Between a Resume and a CV?

3. Identify keywords and key phrases

When reading through the job posting, identify which words or phrases are important to include. Using keywords emphasises how your skills and qualifications align with the advertised position. You can include keywords in any section of your resume. Depending on the role, the keyword or key phrase might refer to a previous job title, a specific skill, a qualification or an area of expertise.

HR managers and recruiters typically receive many resumes, so they only have time to read each one briefly. A resume that uses keywords is more likely to attract their attention. If the company is large, using keywords can also increase the chances of applicant tracking systems picking out your resume.

4. Make a list of relevant skills

To inform recruiters of your skills concisely, list them in a separate section. Include as many skills that match those in the job description as you can. You can list hard skills, such as computer coding, heavy machinery operation and knowledge of foreign languages. You can also include soft skills, such as time management, leadership and self-motivation.

It may be helpful to brainstorm all of your professional skills, including technical and transferable skills. Once you have a list, you can pick out those that apply to the advertised role. You may also mention your skills in the work experience section of your resume to show potential employers how you've applied them in the workplace.

Read more: How to Show Technical Skills on Your Resume (With Examples)

5. Focus on measurable achievements

Your work history section is where you can showcase the depth of your professional experience. To show the recruiter your value as an employee, highlight specific measurable achievements, such as a successful project or the creation of efficient processes, rather than daily duties.

For example, your bullet point might read, by implementing upgraded software for client, halved their time spent on administrative duties. Or you might write, through education and regular liaising with key construction stakeholders, kept 100% of the local fauna and flora biodiversity. Listing tangible achievements can help you demonstrate your skills and expertise.

6. Write a professional summary

A professional summary is a synopsis of your professional experience. It's typically two or three lines long and includes your job title, years of experience and an outline of your key skills or achievements. The last line explains why you want the position and how you can benefit the company. It's easier to write your summary after you complete the body of your resume.

If you've recently graduated, consider writing a resume objective. A resume objective is an introductory paragraph that focuses on skills and goals rather than professional experience. It may mention specific skills, such as software design or leadership.

Read more: How to Write a Resume Summary With Examples

Perfect resume template

Below is a template you can refer to when writing your resume:

[Full name]
[Email]
[Phone number]

Professional Summary
[Two or three sentences highlighting your professional achievements]

Work Experience
[Job title]
[Employer]
[Dates]

Key Responsibilities:

  • [key responsibility]

  • [key responsibility]

  • [key responsibility]

  • [key responsibility]

  • [key responsibility]

[Job title]
[Employer]
[Dates]

Key Responsibilities:

  • [key responsibility]

  • [key responsibility]

  • [key responsibility]

Skills:

  • [skill]

  • [skill]

  • [skill]

  • [skill]

  • [skill]

Education
[Degree name]
[University name]

Perfect resume samples

Below are two examples of perfect resumes to inspire you:

Entry-level resume

This resume example may suit a recent graduate. The candidate hopes to secure an entry-level position in their field. Because they have limited work experience, the example below follows the functional format to highlight education and skills:

Miriam Moreland +61 4 7007 3522 | miriammoreland2@email.com | Bendigo, VIC

Professional Summary
Driven graphic design graduate with a Bachelor of Design from New Image Institute and a flair for innovative and eye-catching designs. Seeking the junior graphic designer position at Grande Lighting Ltd. to contribute a hard-working attitude to an energetic design team.

Education
Bachelor of Design
New Image Institute, March 2022

Work Experience
University Tutor
Foundation Drawing Unit
February 2021-December 2022

  • prepared engaging classes to introduce students to key drawing techniques

  • received consistent positive feedback from students who regularly mentioned excellent communication and helpful student–teacher interactions

  • over two years of experience in tutoring with 95% of graphic design students passing the unit

  • took initiative to help train, support and mentor new tutors

  • gave additional time to provide one-on-one support to students and designed activities

Skills

  • attention to detail

  • organisation

  • leadership

  • advanced Adobe Illustrator

  • Adobe Photoshop

  • logos and branding

Related: How to Write a Graphic Design Cover Letter (With Example)

Mid-level resume

This example may suit a mid-level candidate with over three years of professional experience who is seeking a position that offers greater leadership opportunities. The following resume uses the reverse chronological format:

Robert Fairfield
+61 4 7787 2341 | robertfairfield76@email.com | Altona, VIC

Professional Summary
Qualified physiotherapist with over three years of client-facing experience. Consistent positive client feedback and demonstrable results regarding the management of acute and chronic injuries. Seeking to apply technical skills and a hard-working attitude to the Senior Physiotherapist Role at Reach Physiotherapy.

Work Experience
Community Physiotherapist
Ready Steady Rehab, Melbourne

May 2020-December 2021

  • implemented the latest research on effective at-home exercises for various diagnostic groups, including patients recovering from joint replacement surgery

  • saw a quarter of rehabilitation patients exceeding expected recovery times through the implementation of a client-centred and goal-directed approach

  • increased client base by 10% over six months

  • gained expert knowledge of the effective treatment of joint replacement patients

  • regularly took part in development programs and quality improvement activities to provide clients with the best possible care

Physiotherapist South-West Health, Melbourne
February 2018-February 2020

  • gained practical skills and knowledge through working between a diverse range of clinical settings

  • received positive feedback from 95% of patients over two years and developed a strong client base

  • saw 98% accuracy in the diagnosis of chronic and acute injuries

Education
Bachelor of Physiotherapy (Honours)
Springfield University, Melbourne

Skills

  • patience

  • physical fitness

  • problem-solving

  • clinical rehabilitation

  • injury prevention and diagnosis


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