Resume Tips for Recent Graduates

resume tips

The Class of 2014 has tossed their caps, but we have another lesson filled with resume tips for recent graduates looking for work. 

Whether you just graduated from high school or college, these resume tips will improve your shot at getting an interview and landing the job you want.

Keep important information at the top. Since resume screeners only spend a few seconds scanning each applicant resume, the top of your document is vital space for catching a hiring manager’s attention. If you participated in leadership roles via school clubs and organizations, focus on those experiences first.

Tailor your resume to the job. Since many employers utilize electronic resume screening software to field their applicants, your resume needs to contain industry specific keywords to advance it through the first review. Take a hard look at the advertisement for the position you want and incorporate throughout your resume important words and phrases that the employer repeats in the job ad.


Get creative with past work experience. You may assume that employers don’t want to see menial job experience on a resume, but think again. Whether you cashiered at a local grocery store or babysat, every job requires transferable skills. When crafting your resume, focus on the skills you acquired during those part-time jobs, rather than their job titles. By taking this approach, summers spent mowing lawns are now a study in customer service and managing your own small business.

Showcase your education. As a recent graduate, you most likely have little to no professional work experience in your chosen career field. However, you can demonstrate to a potential employer that you are right for the job by showcasing studies and school work associated with your desired role. Include any of the following under your resume’s “Experience” heading:

  • Completed courses
  • Internships
  • Practicums
  • Job shadowing
  • Independent studies

Use recommendations. It’s never a bad idea to ask your teachers, department heads, college and career counselors, or school administrators for a testimonial. A quote from one or two of these industry leaders that bolsters your worth ethic, knowledge, and character will go a long way toward strengthening your credibility and hiring potential.

New grads, let us know how your job search is going! Join the discussion by leaving a comment below and don’t forget to connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest.

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About Sarah Rivkind 253 Articles
Sarah Rivkind writes about a variety of topics related to telecommuting, work-life balance, job searching, and more.

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