By | Stav Ziv | www.themuse.com
You already know how important your resume is to your job search. But pulling together and organizing all the information you need can be really intimidating. That’s why we’ve created a tool that will make writing your resume easier and more straightforward: a resume worksheet.
“One of the things I realized after working with so many job seekers is a lot of people feel like they don’t know how to articulate what they’ve done,” says Muse career coach Emily Liou, founder of Cultivitae. That’s why she frequently sends her clients a resume worksheet to fill out as a first step in the resume writing process. “Digging into your background and work history takes some deeper reflection,” she says, and it can be crucial to have prompts to guide you.
Going through the exercise of completing a detailed resume worksheet can do more than just help you write a standout resume. All that time spent thinking about what you’ve accomplished and what you’re proud of is “really helpful for you to build your confidence during your job search,” Liou says. Plus, having it all fresh in your mind also primes you to answer common interview questions that ask you to speak to specific situations and examples.
To get your job search off to a good start, download The Muse’s resume worksheet here and read on for advice on how to use it effectively.
The truth is that anybody could benefit from starting over with a resume worksheet. When you sit down with an existing document, it can be hard to see clearly how you can make significant changes. You might be tied to the format, sections, and bullets you already have, Liou says, and it’s so easy to overlook what might be missing entirely. If you’re looking to refresh or revamp your resume for any reason, even if it’s just because it hasn’t been getting you the results you’re looking for, it might be worth stepping away from what you have and filling out a resume worksheet to help you get some new perspective.
However, a resume worksheet can be particularly helpful for:
- Students, new grads, or anyone making their first resume: If you simply don’t have a resume because you’ve never had to make one before, the process can seem overwhelming. You might not be sure what goes on a resume in the first place or how to begin writing it out. A resume worksheet can help steer you in the right direction.
- Anyone who hasn’t made a new resume in years: If you’ve been at the same job or company for a long time or otherwise have a dusty resume that’s years behind your career, it can help to start with a worksheet.
- Folks returning to work after a gap: If you’ve taken time away from the workforce—whether you did it to raise children, care for a loved one, or for any other reason—starting with a worksheet can help give you the prompts you need to jog your memory and help you write your resume upon your return.
- Career changers: If you’re looking to make a pivot into a new kind of role or a different industry, your old resume may have been great at getting you your current job, but might not be very helpful getting you your next one. A resume worksheet can help you make a new, relevant resume that highlights your transferable skills and sets you up to land the role you want next.
- Job seekers relocating or returning from another country: If you’re moving to the U.S. from another country and have only ever made a CV (or curriculum vitae) or otherwise never had an American resume, a resume worksheet can help you get started writing a resume to land you a job in the U.S.