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Don’t Force the Reader to Connect the Dots: This tip applies to what is called a skills-based resume. This formatting choice puts your skills at the top, above your job history. The problem is it requires way too much imagination and attention from the hiring manager.

Below is an example of a skills-based resume (from It emphasizes your skills by showing them first and then, below that, simply lists the jobs you’ve had with little or no description. This forces the person reviewing your resume to match individual skills listed at the top with one or more of the jobs shown and guess if they’ve matched skills to jobs correctly. This works if, in your whole career, you’ve been doing something super specific, like dentistry. You’ve probably filled cavities at each place you worked. So for careers with an extremely narrow focus, a skills-based resume might work fine. However, for most people and most jobs, putting your work history at the top works best.

Interpersonal skills

· Regularly communicate with customers, managers and team members via phone, email and in person

· Effectively educate clients on new products with an emphasis on how the products address their specific needs

· Voted most personable employee by clients for four months in a row


· Regularly exceeded sales quotas by a minimum of 5% monthly

· Upsell an average of two out of five clients by recommending products that met their unique needs

· Ensured all customers were satisfied with their purchases and handled any complaints in a timely and efficient manner


· Set up merchandise in an appealing manner that led to a 7% increase in sales in-store

· Contributed to marketing plans to draw in new customers and increase current customer retention

· Participated in weekly marketing meetings

Employment history

Java Company, New York City, New York, Sales Representative 2015-Present

Extra Corporation, Miami, Florida, Sales Coordinator 2012-2015

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Hot Tip for Job Applicants — How to Make Your Resume Stand Out

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