How to build a professional resume

Crafting an impactful resume is crucial in the competitive job market. It’s your own marketing tool, used to showcase the valuable experience and skills that you bring to the table. In this guide, we’ll take you through each step, offering tips to help you build a professional resume that stands out to employers.

We connected with Stan Thompson in Bethel’s Office of Career Development and Calling to learn more about how to write the perfect resume. Here are some tips from his team.

Start with the basics

The first step in building a well-crafted resume is to ensure accuracy in your contact information and format. This information and format will be tailored to your industry and experience and is the first impression you make on potential employers and hiring managers.

Craft a professional summary or objective

Once you have your contact information and format in place, write a compelling summary or objective that aligns with your career goals. This section is your chance to showcase who you are and what you bring to the table.

Formatting and design elements

Choose appropriate fonts and margins for readability, and divide your resume into clear, distinct sections to make it easy to read and navigate. Remember, employers spend only a few seconds scanning a resume, so make sure yours is visually appealing and organized.

Showcase your professional experience

Now it’s time to effectively structure your experience section, highlighting significant accomplishments and relevant skills. This is where your work history takes center stage. Be sure to include your achievements in previous roles, not just your responsibilities.

Highlight your key skills and abilities

Identify and present both hard and soft skills, customizing them to match job descriptions. You’ll want to make your resume a perfect match for the roles you are applying for. Employers are looking for specific skills that align with their needs, so be sure to emphasize those that make you a strong candidate.

Achievements and accomplishments

Shift the focus to achievements by using bullet points to make them stand out. It’s not just about what you did, but what you achieved in your previous roles. Employers want to see concrete examples of your success and how you added value to your past positions.

Proofreading and final touches

Always proofread your resume for errors and keep it concise and relevant. A polished and error-free resume shows attention to detail and professionalism, and it will make a positive impression on potential employers.

Online presence and emailing your resume

Explore putting your resume online on platforms like LinkedIn or your own personal website or portfolio. This allows employers to easily find and review your information.

Now armed with the tools to craft an exceptional resume, take the next step towards your career goals!


At Bethel University, we offer a variety of opportunities to help you navigate your career development. Check out more useful resources from the Office of Career Development and Calling