Conflicting Resume Advice

Posted by Patra Frame

Resume advice is often contradictory – who do you believe? Ask five people, get 10 answers.  Sad but true. Most all recruiters and hiring managers agree that you have to have a chronological format resume. But not so much else.

These are some common issues in government contracting resumes.


Normally, education goes at the top of your resume when you have a fairly recent degree.  But some government contractors, especially mid-size ones, want that at the top no matter how much experience you have. It makes it easier for them to use your resume in their proposals. They may not have as much help in screening resumes as larger firms. Be prepared with such a resume for job fairs and specific job postings.

Everywhere else, put your work achievements up front. It is those skills and experience you are selling!

Security Clearance

Always put this up front unless you’re applying for a job that doesn’t require a clearance. Many people include it with their contact information. Otherwise, it needs to be in your summary. All you need is the basics of the clearance. Details on who granted it when, when you come up for PR, and so on are unnecessary.

When you are attending a job fair or going in for an interview, make that clearance even more obvious by putting it in bold type on the paper copies you are bringing. And, yes, you should be bringing some paper copies!

Patra Frame is ClearedJobs.Net’s HR Specialist. She is an experienced human resources executive and founder of Strategies for Human Resources. Patra is an Air Force veteran and charter member of the Women in Military Service for America Memorial.

This entry was posted on Friday, September 27, 2013 7:35 am

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