What Should Recent Graduates Keep In Mind When Creating A Résumé

We have covered how imperative it is to have a great résumé for job seekers – be they recent graduates or seasoned professionals. While professionals can fill in the pages easily with their experience, it is quite a hassle for a recent graduate about what to put in their Résumé in order to make a lasting impression.

According to a study by the University of Washington, it takes about 3-6 months for a recent graduate to get a job after they complete graduation.

If you are a recent graduate and you want to ensure your résumé stands apart from the rest, do follow the pointers listed ahead.



Major points to keep in mind when creating your résumé? 

Format and Text:

The format is what catches the eye first, hence choose one that resonates with professionalism. There are multiple formats available on the internet, so check for professional ones. 

The most popularly used Résumé format for recent graduates is the Functional format.  

The text should be aligned neatly and with enough spacing. The text should not look too cramped together. Follow the same spacing throughout the Résumé.

  • You can use standard and professional fonts such as Calibri, Cambria, Helvetica, and Georgia. Use a maximum of two fonts throughout the document. For example, if you choose to use Calibri and Cambria – use Cambria for all the headings and sub-headings consistently and use Calibri for the text body. 
  • For the headings and sub-headings, the ideal sizes would be 16 or 18. The same size can be followed for your name which should be placed first in the Résumé. 
  • The text font size to use is 12, in case the text does not fit in well within the Résumé then you can alter the size to 11.
  • Maintain a margin size of 1 inch on all sides, which is usually the default. If you want more space to fit in your text, you can reduce the margins to either .5 inches or .75 inches accordingly.


Not just the format, but the whole document and the details within must adhere to professionalism. Even your email address must be a professional one and should not have any unprofessional words or symbols in it. 

As per a study, it was found that recruiters reject/ignore 76% of candidates if they have listed an unprofessional email address.

To lend an air of professionalism keep these points in mind:

  • Keep out unnecessary personal information in your Résumé like hobbies.
  • Ensure the document is free of errors – spelling and grammatical.
  • Refrain from fabricating information in the Résumé just to impress the recruiters for the time being. It will backfire for sure in the future.

Usage of Action Verbs:

The use of action verbs is important during the initial scanning of a resume. For starters, A Résumé is scanned just for an average of 4-6 seconds by any member of the recruitment team. Hence, it is advisable for candidates to use action verbs/words to grab the attention of the recruiter in an extremely short span of time. 

Some examples of action verbs are created, composed, managed, led, developed, etc.

Professional and Soft Skills:

Soft skills and professional skills go hand in hand. People have little idea how the two complement each other:

Focus on your soft skills, if there is no ‘Work experience’ to speak for your performance. Soft skills are taken into serious consideration for hiring by 93% of recruiters.

  • If you do have any experience in Projects and Internships, list them under ‘Relevant Experience’ and focus on what part you played and the skills you developed and used during that period.
  • Add in the Certificates, languages learned, and any other relevant professional information.

Add a Cover Letter:

Attaching a cover letter is a surefire way to enhance your chances of getting hired. In a Cover letter, you get to have a personalized word with the recruiter and emphasize why you would be a great fit for their company.

According to some hiring managers, adding a cover letter to your resume ups the ante in your favor by 49%.

Keeping these in mind you should be able to create a power-packed Résumé that paves the way to your first job. Be creative, be confident. All the very best for your job applications.

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