Simple Resume Writing Guide

Get to grips with the simple resume format and design an effective resume from simple templates

Resume Templates

Resume writing can sometimes be a complex task that not everyone is comfortable with. Perhaps you have worked before but you were lucky enough not to need to present a resume initially or maybe you’re just getting started in the working world and it’s your first time creating a resume, but do not worry! The following guide on how to write a simple resume will help you get a feel for what you need to know to make a resume that will get you noticed by a prospective employer.

Simple resumes need to be clean and professional in terms of the design, the formatting, and the content. Usually, simple resumes are used to get straight to the point,  displaying the basic information a hiring manager needs to know about the candidate without any extra fuss that may come with a more creative resume or elaborated, professional resume for executives.

Due to this simplicity, oftentimes the types of jobseeker who employ basic resumes are students, recent grads looking for an entry-level position or those searching for part-time work. Because of a lack of previous work experience, there are many simple resume templates available to help jobseekers write a winning simple resume for their job application.

Sometimes known as a traditional resume or a non-creative option, simple resumes are often elegant but minimalist in the sense that they do not add extra flourishes that do not relate directly to the candidate’s profile and the vacancy on offer. There is no need for graphics or fancy color because the applicant wants to portray solely their information in a plain and concise manner.

How to make a simple resume

With this understanding of what a simple resume is, it is time to look at how to create a simple resume through some standard advice for what to include in order to stand out in today’s competitive job market.

Although the idea of simple or basic resumes may bring to mind the notion of a less embellished resume, this does not mean that it does not require planning, investigation, and effort to ensure that the resume attracts attention from the hiring manager.

Check out the following advice for writing a simple job resume in order to offer your best possible application:

  • To begin a simple resume, candidates should do a little research into their own professional background, listing their main work experience, education and qualifications as well as any outstanding achievements and relevant skills that could be beneficial to a job application. With this information organized, jobseekers can start to form a first draft basic resume.
  • After the initial stage of investigation to establish the information that will be used to create an effective resume to self-advertise each candidate’s profile, it is essential to decide on how to structure a simple resume. More advice for this can be found below in the section on the simple resume format.
  • Following this, candidates should take each simple resume section in turn and carefully select the relevant material that will be displayed in each part. The standard main areas to consider are education and training, work experience, skills and a principle simple resume objective section that gives a short but to-the-point introduction of the candidate and how they can benefit the position or company they’re applying to. Each area should describe the most relevant and recent experience, whether in work or academia with a description of the principal achievements and responsibilities undertaken.
  • It is crucial for simple resume candidates to ensure they research and present relevant keywords in the different resume sections, especially in the core competencies or skills and job history components. These keywords can be taken from the job vacancy description, the company website or alternatively from similar candidate profiles. They should refer to the qualifications and technical or personal abilities required or desired for the ideal applicant.
  • Simple resumes should adapt to each vacancy individually. This means jobseekers cannot create one basic resume to send to various job openings. Candidates must tailor each resume, as they would their simple resume cover letter, to the position, company or sector they’re applying to.
  • Additional resume sections that simple resumes could include depend entirely on the category of jobseeker and their professional experience. For example, if a candidate has lots of job training, certificates or qualifications, these can be added within another section or as their own part, dedicated specifically to these details as long as they are relevant to the vacancy.

An online simple resume builder is a great tool for jobseekers – especially first-time jobseekers – to create a winning resume that encompasses all the information necessary to capture the attention of a potential employer. With ResumeCoach you can make sure that your resume might be simple but effective and error-free.

Simple resumes for graduates

Each year the working population is growing exponentially as more and more people graduate college and go on to look for a professional career. This means that it is becoming increasingly difficult to get a job based solely on your academic accreditations. Recent grads are having to use new methods to make their resumes stand out more than in the past and to add other information that helps convince hiring managers to meet for a job interview.

Whether it is a first job resume or as a fresh graduate, you’ve had previous work experience, simple resumes are a good springboard to launch yourself into the working world. Beginning with a simple resume objective, graduates can launch themselves into the mind of the recruiter by using the right action words and highlighting relevant achievements.

The most important aspect that graduate candidates should bear in mind is that they are entering a competition running alongside a large number of jobseekers who may be either as or more qualified, in terms of training. Therefore, fresher jobseekers should always adapt their simple resume by adding sections which relate to their specific individual professional profile such as honors and awards or internships.

An additional element that is useful for recent graduate resumes is social media. Adding certain online media contents can be beneficial to simple resume applicants because it allows the hiring manager to access a site with a more extensive and detailed candidate profile. The optimal way to do this is to add a link to your LinkedIn profile or a professional blog where fresh graduates can display more of their extra-curricular activities and even in some cases, where appropriate, personal interests.

Simple resumes for teenagers

Getting a first job or part-time work to accompany your studies as a teenager is the best start you can give your career from the very beginning. As soon as you get the chance to start volunteering or working or even taking part in events, etc. you can build a simple resume that will outshine many of your peers.

Although you may at first find yourself lacking in paid work experience, there are many other ways of making your professional qualities stand out in a simple resume for a teenager. It is advisable for teenage jobseekers to start with a simple resume objective that briefly details the key points of their profile in order to catch a prospective employer’s attention.

Throughout your years at school, you will most likely be involved in different associations, clubs, volunteering activities and various projects that help you to develop different skills and give you experience working independently, in a team, as a leader, with a range of people from assorted backgrounds, ages, etc. These experiences are very valuable to student resumes because they offer potential employers an insight into the character of each jobseeker including their interests, passions, and abilities.

Given that the principal aspect of simple resumes for teenagers is the education section, it is most common to begin a student resume with this information as standard and add other sections as corresponds to the vacancy you’re applying to and to your other experience.

Simple resume format

Working within the parameters of resume formatting, there are several basic resume formats candidates can choose from to create a simple resume design that includes the pertinent information for their application and maintains a simple layout.

There are three widely recognized resume formats that can be used to create a winning simple resume for any purpose.

  • Chronological resume: The emphasis of the reverse-chronological resume format falls generally on the work experience section which displays the job history of the applicant in reverse chronological order.
  • Functional or skills-based resume: The focus of the functional resume format is based on the skills of each applicant and explains the principle abilities with examples of accomplishments in different roles.
  • Combination resume: The combination resume format is based on a mix of the two previous resume types, allowing the candidate to highlight both work experience and skills.

Whichever of the three styles a candidate decides to use, it should not affect the simple resume layout employed for their individual resume.

The following are some tips on how to maintain a clear and constant format for simple resumes:

  • Simple resumes should not exceed one A4 page.
  • Make sure to use easy-to-read fonts and do not use more than 2 fonts throughout.
  • You can use bold, italics, underlining and different sizing to show variations in text, such as the name of an employer, the job title, dates and then the description. But, remember to always use the same format for each job/training course, etc.
  • Do not use fonts over size 12 font or below size 10 for the main text. For titles, use a size that is appropriate and suits the formatting well, such as 24.
  • Do not go overboard with the use of separating lines or any graphics or colors you choose to include.

Readability is key for a hiring manager to seek out the relevant information as quickly as possible to decide whether your simple resume makes it to the shortlist. Check out more tips on how to write your resume on our Blog.

The simpler, the better.

When it comes to compiling your perfect job application, don’t forget to include a simple resume cover letter too which can give further details on any professional or academic achievements and even be used to explain any discrepancies in a candidate’s work history if appropriate.

Simple resume examples

For some jobseekers, the best way to go about applying for a job is by using a simple resume template which shows examples of how to write, format and finish a professional yet basic resume.

Simple resume examples allow candidates to get ideas for what to include and how to best present their details in a straightforward manner that will give the hiring manager exactly what they want. Often simple resume samples will give jobseekers the possibility to see how people can make themselves stand out without creating a flashy, innovative resume but maintaining a standard layout.

Recent grad resume samples are also useful for many first-time jobseekers who are just getting started with their career and have yet to experience the recruiting jungle. By employing clear resume sections that highlight the most relevant and significant information to the individual job post and candidate profile, simple resumes allow jobseekers to deliver their application without any fuss.

Another advantage of simple resume examples is that they can be used as a springboard for all kinds of jobseekers to make a more elaborate, creative resume or to adapt as necessary for each individual. Simple resume templates are available on ResumeCoach’s online resume maker, which allow jobseekers to personalize with their professional information as they require.

Last modified on July 6th, 2020

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