6 Things to Always Include on Your Resume/C.V.

June 13 Edit: This post was geared towards college students and may not be applicable to all candidates. If you’ve recently graduated from college, include your GPA. If you didn’t attend college or are an experienced candidate, a GPA may not be relevant and instead focus on your skills. 

There was a recent article, “What Recruiters Look At During the 6 Seconds They Spend On Your Resume“, that put together a heat map that tracked the eye movements of 30 recruiters. Pretty interesting article, but what I’m here to share with you today is the 6 basic things you should absolutely, positively, without a doubt include on your resume, to make the most of those ’6 seconds’.

1. Your name

Seems simple, but if I can’t find your name, how do you expect me to identify you or know who you are if you don’t have your name CLEARLY stated on your resume? And if your name is Michael but you go by Tony (I’m not going to ask why, though I’m sure there’s a great story), either answer to both names or make it clear what your preference is.

2. Email

In today’s world, most companies have an online application process you go through to submit your resume and profile. More often than not, your email address is your unique identifier and the best way to get in touch with you. (Not your name, your email. Do you know how many Sejal Patels there are out there? A lot.) But also use an appropriate email address — crazigal143@email.com might work for your friends, but you may want to reconsider for a job application.

3. Phone number

Even though we live in a high-tech world, phone calls are still widely used in recruiting to contact candidates about a job opening that sounds perfect, to conduct a phone screen, or just to confirm that the resume is up-to-date. Make sure you list the best phone number where a recruiter can reach you, and if you don’t have voicemail set up yet, now would be a good time.

4. GPA 

It’s pretty amazing how many people leave their GPA off their resume, especially good ones! Brag a little! While GPAs aren’t the only indication of learning, when you’re getting an incredibly high number of resumes, it’s often used as a filter. Many companies have a minimum GPA they use to screen resumes as well. If you think by leaving your GPA off your resume, you’ll be able to sneak in, think again. It’s one of the first questions my company asks, and it would save both of us some time if it’s on your resume from the get-go.

5. Degree and graduation date

Tell us what you’re studying and when you’re expected to finish. This will help us figure out if you’re looking for a full-time position or an internship. It’ll also help us gauge where you might fit, based on your academic background. Not sure if you’ll be graduating in the summer or the fall? Just put what you think is most likely at the time you submit your resume, and update it later. When you do update your resume, be sure to update your resume in all of your online profiles so that the most up-to-date version is available.

6. Work status

We want to know if you have the permanent unrestricted right to work in the United States or if you’ll need sponsorship. Depending on the company and its hiring needs, it may or may not be able to sponsor employees but this is information that is best to share up front.

Bonus Tip:

Watch for white space

Recruiters go through tons of resumes every day. While I’m sure you’re quite an impressive candidate, use your resume wisely and be sure to include some white space. A clear, concise and nicely formatted resume will be easier on a recruiter’s eyes, and will garner more attention, than a poorly formatted and spaced resume with no white space, but lots of accomplishments.

Does your resume include these 6 basics? Do you have a bonus tip to include?

16 Responses to 6 Things to Always Include on Your Resume/C.V.

  1. Cameron Merriman says:

    I have had my resume critiqued by quite a few business professionals. Along with all of the above information, I have included a barcode link directly to my Linked-in which in turn leads to my entire internet profile (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) I have had mixed reviews on whether I should leave it or not, but I firmly believe that it is relevant information in today’s job market; particularly to high tech companies like Intel.

    • Sejal says:

      I think it also depends on the type of job you’re looking for and where you’re looking.

  2. Hadi says:

    Hi, thanks for the great info. I especially like the part about work status. I have been including this on my resume lately but I have always been worried about it looking dumb on the resume. I have some questions that I think you would probably be able to answer better than anyone else. First, assuming that I am qualified for a job which would you be looking at more closely, my resume or cover letter? The second question is something that often happens to me when applying for jobs at Intel. There have been 3 or 4 jobs which I have applied for which according to the job description I would be a perfect match for. I know a lot of people apply for these jobs and it must be difficult to get noticed. I would think that if I am not receiving at least a phone call for some basic screening for a job which to me seems like I would be a perfect candidate for, I must be doing something wrong.

    • Sejal says:

      Hi Hadi, It’s something that an Intel recruiter will ask you which is why including it on a resume works for us. Opinions on cover letters vary from recruiter to recruiter, but all recruiters look at resumes so I’d say that gets looked at more closely. Which job in particular are you talking about? I looked up your profile and see that you’ve applied to a few different positions–some of them you’re still being considered for, some we went with a different candidate and others you were not a match. I would keep applying to jobs that are a match to your skill set and interests. Good luck!

  3. Groucho says:

    Cameron Merriman, I think you should include also which side of the bed you prefer. It gives so much info about your technical skills as your Facebook and Twitter profiles. IMHO, of course.
    (And it tells the company, that they can ask you anything, no matter if it is related with the position or not).

    • Sejal says:

      How do you know he’s applying to a position where that wouldn’t help? It’s a personal choice whether to include your social networking profiles–but each individual can make the judgement call on that based on what they share and how it might be relevant for the position.

  4. Fran says:

    “but I firmly believe that it is relevant information in today’s job market; particularly to high tech companies like Intel.”

    So, in your Facebook/Twitter accounts you keep interesting conversations about the last technology topics?

    Then yes, you are completely right. Your Facebook account is relevant to high tech companies like Intel.

    Best regards,

    Fran

    PS: “but I firmly believe that it is relevant information in today’s job market”
    You talk like a politician, not like an engineer. IMHO, of course.
    If you have a blog, with interesting posts on it about technology, that is relevant. Intel is not going to hire you because you are “intelligent enough” to create a Facebook account, and you show there how many “friends” you have. Well, maybe for the marketing department yes.

    • Sejal says:

      It would also depend how one uses Facebook/Twitter and what they share there. It’s an individual’s choice to include or not include their social networking profile.

  5. Ryan says:

    I would like to know why this is six things to always include on your resume is valid. College is not the only way to gain experience in the work place. Young men and women every day serve in the military and do not receive the same benfits as a kid who sits on their behinds for four years and goes home every night to their bed and repeat the same thing every day. Many people couldn’t afford college and elect to serve. How can you say a GPA and when you gradute from school is valid when not the only avenue in life? There are many men and women out there who have gottenout who can do circles on kids these days who have zero experience in the work force. It’s ashame college and/or military should be considered the same.

    • Sejal says:

      Hi Ryan, I should have clarified that the post was geared towards college candidates (and just went back and made that clarification). You’re right that college isn’t the only way to gain experience and there are lots of people out there who have great experience that did not attend college. I take offense to your assumption that Intel doesn’t give military experience the credit it deserves–we absolutely believe in the talent of military service members and veterans. In fact, we’ve made advances in helping VETs find employment and in our veteran hiring programs. You can learn more about this on our Careers for Military Service Members and Veterans page.

  6. Josh Anderson says:

    Thanks for the great tips Sejal. I have enjoyed reading your posts, especially the one from guest blogger Eshe (Failing Forward). I had a very similar situation through high school and into my freshman year of college. My education was then interrupted, but a year after I returned back to schooling the company I was with offered me a full time position that required me to give up my schooling.

    I have recently had a desire to change careers, as well as go back to school, and so I have been looking into jobs at Intel (my brother-in-law has worked for Intel for some time, including helping to open the Fab in China, and has often encouraged me to apply online).

    My question to you is, how possible is it for someone like me, who has a ton of real world work experience-from manufacturing to operations to training and sales-but on paper doesn’t appear that impressive as far as actual schooling or training, to actually get a chance to interview?

    I have applied to many of the Manufacturing positions over the last month (check my profile) but haven’t heard back on the majority of them. Does that mean I’m still a possible candidate or am I just lost among the sea of resumes?

    Any insight, tips, and/or direction towards that next step would be greatly appreciated.

  7. Brock says:

    Sadly, I follow these steps and am qualified for more then 80% of the jobs I apply for yet I receive no correspondence back.

    A lot of the job hunt is getting lucky and not being lost in the black hole known as a “Data base”

    • Sejal says:

      I wish I had magical advice to give you, but I don’t. All I can say is keep at it and hopefully something will work out for you soon! Timing has a lot to do with it as well. Good luck!