Creating a resume can be tough. There are endless formats to choose from, and you’ll find conflicting information and opinions about what should and shouldn’t go on a resume. It can be overwhelming to wade through this endless stream of articles, but this one is meant to help you refine your resume specifically for manufacturing positions. Read on for the tips and to see how to apply them to a sample resume.
When you’re applying for jobs, it’s a good idea to create a different resume for each type of job you apply for. Since every employer is going to be looking for something different, use your resume to highlight your skills and show how you would be a good fit for the position. To demonstrate your qualifications, focus on your strengths and achievements instead of simply listing responsibilities that you’ve had at previous positions.
Here are some tips as you edit your resume for a manufacturing position:
Length: Keep your resume to 1 page. Hiring managers get dozens of resumes every day – so make their job as easy as possible by sharing a short, focused resume. Play around with the formatting, font size, and margins to fit everything in one page.
Formatting: An easy-to-read resume is very important. There are templates available on Google Docs or in Microsoft Word to get you started – you just have to plug in your own information. No matter the format you use, follow these tips:
Contact Information: Include your full name, email address, and phone number at the top of your resume. Your email should be professionally named - no nicknames or inappropriate terms. You don’t need to include your mailing address.
Work Experience: For each position, include 2-3 bullet points, tops. You don’t have to describe literally everything you did at a job every day. Instead, focus on 2-3 of your top achievements or highlights from the position. If you worked on specific projects or products, feel free to include those.
Skills: This is a section for you to highlight skills that aren’t immediately obvious from your job history, including abilities you’ve gained outside of your employment history. Do you enjoy hands-on hobbies such as woodworking or sewing at home? Did you take a jewelry-making or soldering class for fun? This is a great section to share those. Be sure to think back to the types of skills that will be necessary for the specific job you’re applying for – help the hiring manager understand why you’re a great fit for the job!
References: You don’t need to list references on your resume. The employer will ask you for your references when they’re ready to call them, probably later in the hiring process. You can keep them off for now and save the space.
File Name: Name the file “YourName Resume” so those in charge of hiring can easily find it. They read a lot of resumes, so this does them a big favor.
File Type: Although Microsoft Word .doc and .docx files used to be the standard, these days PDF files are easiest to access across different computers. Avoid .txt, .pages, or web links – these are difficult for some computers to open and may be hard to share!
With these tips in mind, let's look at a bad resume and fix it.
Resume A has some common issues seen in resumes.
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Length: It’s three pages due to long job descriptions.
Formatting: Bullet points are misaligned in some sections, and some spacing could be eliminated to help make it shorter.
Contact Information: While the name should be large and at the top, this is much too big. The mailing address is not needed.
Job Descriptions: Some are too long and include copied job descriptions from other websites, and some are too short and don’t explain what the person accomplished at the position. Some are missing information like dates.
Skills: This list is too long and includes generic skills that may not be directly relevant to a manufacturing position (though they are still great skills to have in general).
References: We don’t need these yet, and family members should not be references. They should be people you have worked with professionally.
Resume B has been edited to fix these issues.
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Length: It’s now one page.
Formatting: We fixed the bullet points and the spacing, and the mismatched fonts. We also kept some colors for flair but changed the less readable colors to black.
Contact Information: Changed the font size and deleted the mailing address.
Job Descriptions: We highlighted successes and strengths at previous positions, instead of having a straight list of just responsibilities for the more commonly-held positions of barista and customer service. We also made the job descriptions for the other jobs more specific.
Skills: We moved this to the end, so the job descriptions would be first. We also highlighted some hands-on skills, and shared examples of the less specific skills (such as organization)
References: We deleted this since we don’t need it yet!
If you’d like to use this template yourself, you can access the Google Doc template here. More templates can be found on Google Docs by going to the Template Gallery. Microsoft Word also provides several good resume templates.
If you have additional tips, or would like help editing your resume, we’d be happy to help. Email us at email@example.com.