Resume Writing Tips

The main purpose of a resume is to get an interview. Sell yourself to the hiring team and show that you are a good fit for the position. It is imperative that previous responsibilities and accomplishments are clearly outlined in the resume.

General Resume Etiquette


  • Ensure content is organized and displayed in a visually appealing manner to ensure an enjoyable experience for the reader. Make the hiring manager want to know more when they are finished reviewing it.
  • Avoid lengthy blocks of text when possible. Break up any large blocks into concise bullet points.  
  • Spelling and grammatical errors cannot happen. Have a different set of eyes review the final version before submitting it.
  • If relevant to your experience, include key words that are listed in the job posting.
  • Try to keep the length to a maximum of 2 pages, and provide enough detail on each experience best position yourself for the job without overselling. Do not stretch your resume just to reach 2 pages.
  • Repetition: avoid repeating the same phrases or words throughout the resume.
  • When using acronyms, be sure to clearly identify the word/phrase it represents within the resume before it is used. Common industry terms may not be known by the individual who has the first look at a submitted resume as this can cause the reader confusion and potentially a rejection.
  • Emphasize past experiences on your resume that best fit the position being applied to.
  • Keep in mind that all resume statements may be reviewed during reference checks.
  • Write your descriptions in either bullet points or short paragraphs - it is your decision. If the position requires professional writing, it is recommended to use your resume to exemplify your writing abilities.

Preferred Resume Content

Personal Information:
  • Home location
  • Personal Email
  • Phone number (Cell and/or Home)
Highlights of qualifications:
  • This is your opportunity to tailor your resume to the specific job
  • Include related skills used in previous positions
  • Focus on past experiences that relate to the current job you are applying for
Work Experience:
  • List experience in order of dates (most recent comes first)
  • If it was a contract position, then state that beside the job title
  • For each experience include the:
    • Job title
    • Company (Optional – Include a brief overview of what the company does if they are not well known)
    • Dates of employment
    • Location
  • Describe achievements and accomplishments
    • Include available metrics as well as quantitative achievements in the position (e.g. Increased sales 150% in the region over a 2-year period)
  • Gaps in employment can be explained in the cover letter or with a 1 line description within this section
  • Include the school name, dates attended, and qualification(s) achieved.
  • Descending order based on level of certification/ degree
  • State notable awards/recognition achieved at the institution
Volunteer Experience:
  • Provide a brief description of tasks and duties while volunteering
  • For example: 4H or public speaking
  • Share any activities, hobbies, and personal interests outside of work
Other Certificates and Achievements
  • Include anything that you think adds depth to your resume
  • For example: CPR, WHIMIS, or Chemical Dispenser Licence
If you’re starting from scratch, DOWNLOAD the Litherland & Company resume template


Cover Letter Tips

What is a Cover Letter?


The main objective of your cover letter is to show why you are interested in the position. It is a personalized impression of yourself and should be viewed as an area to expand on specific details from your resume or to add other relevant information. Remember, if the position entails writing and/or communication, use this as a platform to demonstrate the skills you offer.

General Cover Letter Etiquette


  • A cover letter should be included with every job application
  • Use formal business letter format, including date, your home address and the company's business address that you're applying to
  • Prior research is a necessity. Demonstrate that you have up-to-date knowledge about the company and link this to how they will benefit from hiring you as an employee
  • Use the job advertisement or description that you applied from to determine how to tailor your cover letter to highlight certain aspects of your skills, knowledge and personality