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Résumé & Cover Letter Workshop. Résumé Workshop. Purpose. Format Options. Resume Components. References. Additional Résumé Hints. Did you know…. Research has shown that most résumés are looked at for 10 seconds or less. Three Format Options. 1. Chronological Resume

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Résumé & Cover Letter Workshop

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R sum cover letter workshop

Résumé & Cover Letter Workshop

R sum workshop

Résumé Workshop

  • Purpose

  • Format Options

  • Resume Components

  • References

  • Additional Résumé Hints

Did you know

Did you know…

Research has shown that most résumés are

looked at for 10 seconds or less.

Three format options

Three Format Options

1.Chronological Resume

2.Functional Resume

3.Combination Resume

Chronological r sum

Chronological Résumé

Primarily comprised of work experience with less attention drawn to education, achievements, etc. This format emphasizes time.

When to Use:

  • No major gaps in employment history

  • Work history is related to position and reflects growth in the field

Functional r sum

Functional Résumé

Focused on transferable skills; other headings, such as education and work experience are mentioned but not detailed. This format emphasizes skills.

When to Use:

  • Possess skills acquired through experience other than work (e.g. volunteer, education, membership)

  • Entering or re-entering the job market

  • Career change where experience does not relate to new job objective

Combination r sum

Combination Résumé

Expands on work experience and highlights any skills acquired elsewhere. This format emphasizes both experience and skills.

When to Use:

  • Suitable in most circumstances

  • To highlight both relevant skills and work experience

  • Changing jobs within the same industry

R sum components

Résumé Components

  • Personal Information

  • Objective

  • Highlight of Qualifications (Chronological)

  • Summary of Qualifications (Functional & Combined)

  • Education

  • Work Experience

  • Optional Sections

  • References

Personal information

Personal Information

  • Full name should be bolded and centered at the top of the page

  • Include:

    • Current mailing address

    • Contact number

    • Professional e-mail address (if checked regularly)

  • Do not include:

    • Date of Birth

    • Marital status

    • Social Insurance Number

    • Picture

Highlight of qualifications

Highlight of Qualifications

  • Used in Chronologicalformat only

  • Highlights and summarizes top selling points

  • Addresses the skills an employer is looking for (in the job ad or job description)

  • Should be tailored to each position

  • Avoid using general statements. Instead provide pertinent facts about your experience and skills

  • Usually 4-6 bullet points

Summary of qualifications

Summary of Qualifications

  • Used in Functional and Combined formats only

  • More detailed than Highlight of Qualifications

  • Specifically broken down into different skill sets (e.g. Communication Skills or Computer Skills) with 3-5 points in each



  • List in reverse chronological order

  • Bold the name of your degree(s)

  • Include the name of the institution(s) and month/year

  • No need to list courses or GPA

Work experience

Work Experience

  • List in reverse chronological order

  • Bold your job titles

  • Include in the following order: job title, name of employer (organization/company), date, and location

  • Use action verbs to introduce your duties and responsibilities

  • If you have a lot of short-term work, then group them together if possible (e.g. bartending, waitressing, etc.)

Optional sections

Optional Sections

  • Volunteer Experience

  • Awards and Accomplishments

  • Professional Affiliations or Memberships

  • Relevant Interests and Achievements

  • Relevant Skills and Abilities

  • Additional Training



  • Seek permission before listing someone as a reference

  • Give references an updated copy of your résumé once you are invited for an interview

  • Listing references is optional; however, if not included, you should indicate “References available upon request.”

  • If reference list is included, list on a separate page

Additional r sum tips

Additional Résumé Tips

  • Avoid exceeding two pages (excluding references)

  • Include your name and the page number on

    each page as a header (except on first page)

  • Keep spacing and formatting consistent; leave white space

  • Do not use paragraphs - use bullet statements

  • Always have someone else proof read for errors

Cover letters

Cover Letters

Cover letter workshop

Cover Letter Workshop

The session will include:

  • Format/components of a cover letter

  • General cover letter tips

    The purpose of a cover letter is:

    to highlight accomplishments or skills that reflect your suitability for a position.

Cover letter format

Cover Letter Format

  • Return Address

  • Date

  • Addressee

  • Salutation (Greeting)

  • Body (4 paragraphs)

  • Closing

  • Signature

Starting the cover letter

Starting the Cover Letter

  • Return Address

    • Location:top left margin

    • Insert your complete mailing address; do not include your name

  • Date

    • Location: two lines below your return address

    • Insert today’s date; do not abbreviate date

  • Addressee

    • Location: two lines below the date

    • Address the specific individual who will process your application

    • Include the mailing address of the company

  • Salutation

    • Location: one line below company address

    • Use Dear Mr. or Ms.; only if specific name cannot be identified, use Dear Sir or Madam

    • Insert a colon after salutation

Body first paragraph

Body: First Paragraph

Key Message: Why you are writing

  • Clearly state what job you are applying for; include the job competition number, if applicable

  • State how you learned about it and include the date that you discovered the posting

Body second paragraph

Body: Second Paragraph

Key Message: What you have to offer

  • Provide specific information about the skills you have and how your qualifications will benefit the company

  • Respond to every possible requirement that is mentioned in the job posting

Body third paragraph

Body: Third Paragraph

Key Message: How you are a good fit for this organization

  • Indicate why you would like to work for this company/organization

    - e.g. products, service, place in the community, etc.

  • Show parallels between your interests or experiences and the company image

Body fourth paragraph

Body: Fourth Paragraph

Key Message: Request an interview

  • Respectfully request an interview

    - “I look forward to the opportunity to meet with you to further discuss…”

  • State where (i.e. phone #) and when you can be reached

  • Thank the employer for his/her consideration

Ending the cover letter

Ending the Cover Letter

  • Closing

    • Location: two lines below body of letter, aligned with left margin

    • Use standard business closing “Sincerely,”

  • Signature

    • Location: four lines beneath the closing

    • Type your full name as it appears on your resume

    • Sign above your typed name in black ink

    • If sending electronically, consider including an electronic signature

Additional cover letter tips

Additional Cover Letter Tips

  • Limit your cover letter to one page

  • Use either Arial or Times New Roman font

  • Ensure that the company name and title of the position are consistent throughout

  • Do not forget to sign your cover letter

  • Always have someone else proof read for errors

Next steps

Next steps

For more information and/or to have your resume and cover letter critiqued,


The Centre for Career Development


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