6.1 American Resume Instructions and Format
When HORIZON presents a candidate to an American company, HORIZON first sends the candidate’s resume to be evaluated by the potential host company. For this reason it is extremely important for the candidate to have a competitive, presentable resume. The candidate’s resume must catch the attention of the potential host company upon first glance. Below are some helpful tips to get your candidate’s resume noticed:
1) KEEP THE RESUME TO ONE or TWO PAGES ONLY. This is most important as the HR director usually does not have time to read through several pages on each candidate. The one page resume will pique interest just enough for them to ask for more.
2) Use common font type and size. Font styles “Times New Roman” or “Arial” are most common. Also, the resume should use small font sizes such as 10 or 12 point font. Remember…the resume should be one or two pages only.
3) Do not use text boxes, frames, backgrounds, etc. The resume should be clear and professional.
4) Do not title the resume CURRICULUM VITAE. This title is reserved for multiple page resumes filled with specific work experiences in the higher levels of employment such as attorneys, doctors, and scientists, etc.
5) Insert a small business photo on the right upper corner of the resume. We recommend that men wear a shirt and tie or suit and that women wear business attire. Please avoid t-shirts, sweat-shirts, hats, religious garments, low neckline blouses, etc.
6) Do not put age, gender or marital status on the resume. That information is mandatory on the visa application but inappropriate on a resume. Most, if not all, American companies follow a strict Equal Opportunity Employer code. Listing age and gender on a resume could potentially result in discrimination claims against a host company.
7) Pay attention to how the dates are listed on a resume. Remember that in the United States the month comes before the day. Also, the U.S. uses the Roman calendar.
8) List university degrees. University degrees should be listed with the years of graduation, but not the courses taken. American employers are more interested in the university degree and work experience than they are in specific courses.
9) List work Experience in chronological order, starting from the most recent position. If numerous positions can be included, a resume should list the last three. Also, a detailed description of the responsibilities in each position should be listed.
10) Don’t include references on the resume. References should be kept on a separate page and provided to the potential host company only if requested.
Note: In the objectives listed on the resume, don’t list “to enhance English skills” as a reason or goal in entering the trainee program. The program requires all candidates to be fluent in English so this statement is never appropriate for a resume. It is common to list this objective on an application but never in a resume.