Free Resume Template Tips for Professionals

When you make a resume, selecting the right resume formatputs you ahead of the game when you are seeking the highest paying jobs. Hiring managers typically review hundreds of resumes a day, so it is crucial that yours is well-organized and easy to read. Job search sites like Ladders provides free resume templates to help you choose a resume format that best reflects your skills and background. Ladders has reviewed more than 1.5 million resumes, so they have the expertise to help you create a stellar professional resume, allowing you to take your career to the next level.

A resume template will get you started on the right path.As you prepare to sell yourself to prospective employers, consider these resume writing tips for a winning resume.

General Resume Formatting

These general guidelines apply, no matter what resume format you choose.

Contact Information

Place your contact information at the top of your resume so that it is easy to find. Include the standard information: name address, phone numbers, email address and website. In today’s digital age, you should also add any social media accounts you would like a prospective employer to see, such as your LinkedIn profile.


During their first round of reviews, hiring managers often scan resumes rather than reading them all the way through. Resumes with a neat, organized layout are less likely to be rejected.


As with most documents, 10-12-point font size is recommended. While an especially small type size is tiring to the eyes, using large print will not necessarily make a good impression, either. Select Helvetica, Arial or another standard font, and use the same typeface throughout your entire resume.


Leave some space between sections to make it easier for the reader to distinguish between them. When listing your qualifications and skills, use bullet points rather than paragraphs, as the latter tend to make the desired information more difficult to locate.

Select a Resume Format

When you make a resume, it is essential to choose a resume format that is the best fit for your background and job search.


Using this traditional style when formatting your resume is most suitable for those with a steady employment history. Employment experience should be listed in reverse-chronological order (beginning with your most recent employment). As with other sections, use bullet points to keep employment details as succinct as possible.


A functional resume focuses on skills in lieu of dates of employment, highlighting your achievements. This format is most appropriate for those with gaps in their employment history.


Recommended for anyone making a career change, this style lists skills per the functional format. However, under the skills section, you can include relevant information about your employment history. When you makea resume with this format, it shows prospective employers how your skills relate to their field, even if you have never held a job in that sector before.

How to Summarize Your Educational Background

If you want to make your educational background the focus of your resume, this section should immediately proceed your contact information. Include the institution name, your degree, major, honors or achievements and GPA (if it is at least 3.0).

If it has been several years since you have earned a degree or certification, list your education at the bottom of your resume and omit your GPA and achievements, unless they are internationally-recognized, such as Fulbright or Rhodes Scholar.

How to List Employment Experience

When describing your work experience on a professional resume, list company name, job title, and dates of employment. Remember to include internship experience in this section, too.

What Not to Include

When crafting an outline of your qualifications, there are resumewriting pitfalls to avoid, such as lack of organization, jumbled text, layouts that are not visuallyappealing and including information about irrelevant hobbies.

An effective professional resume accentuates your skills and qualifications while detracting attention from any shortcomings in your employment history. For ambitious applicants in search of thehighest paying jobs, the right resume template and format is essential to give you an edge over the competition.

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