A resume outline is the first thing a recruiter notices. 

You may have heard the 6 seconds rule that still prevails among the recruiters. It means that your resume has 6 seconds to impress a recruiter before he decides to scan it further or stash with a pile of rejected papers on his desk. 

Even in 2020, when the competition is rising, companies are deploying talent management software like ATS to shortlist the candidates. 

So even if you are trying to pass such tests that single out recruiters in the first step of the screening process, you need to make sure your resume outline is perfect. 

Hence, to help you create a stellar resume layout that will work for every job you target in 2020, we devised the following guide: 


A resume header comprises a profile title, the name, contact details, and location. Writing information in the header is  basic, but you may need to change some information according to the profile you are targeting. 

Let’s say you are applying for a remote job, so the location of your residence is an irrelevant piece of information to the recruiter. Hence, it is important to modify the details of the header before applying for a job. 

Further, the most important essential of the header is the profile title. You need to change your profile title as per the job you are targeting. 

Let’s say your job title is “Technical Lead” which does not convey much information about your job except that it has something to do with tech. Hence, under such circumstances, refer to the job description to choose keywords that are of paramount importance and modify the title accordingly. 

Though make sure whatever changes you make, they are relevant to the functions of your existing job role. 


Even though the recruiter will be checking your resume outline to look for relevant information, it is most likely that he is doing it to locate this section as it serves as an overview of a resume. 

To master this section, you need to trace all the important achievements that can help you charm the recruiter. 

Further, you need to ensure that you do not exceed more than 3-4 lines to write the summary, so you need to be extremely picky with the information you are trying to include here. 

It is advisable that you should use the job description to look for keywords that can help your resume connect with the target profile. 

Have a look at the given example:

3+ years experienced content editor with a track-record of curating and editing content for premium publications. Adept at managing team remotely while ensuring timely-delivery of OKRs”

In mere 2 lines, this summary talks about accomplishment and skills of an experienced candidate. It is conveying what he can offer to the company without any exaggeration and fluff.

Work experience  

This is the backbone of your resume with all the details regarding your job profession. 

Let’s say you are a “content editor” then the professional experience section should have all the points that can help showcase your achievements as a content editor. Hence, you need to make sure you convey this information correctly. 

Here is how you can accomplish it: 

  • Work Profile: To write the header of your work profiles, you need to ensure that the format is accurate. Write your role first followed by the company name, then location and time. 

  • Company description: Make sure you include the company description as the recruiter may not have heard of the company you are working for. And keep the description restricted to one line. Include figures related to the no. of employees working in the company, revenue, and geographical presence of the company. 

  • Bullet points and subheadings: To write the points under the work profile concerning your roles and responsibilities, make sure you curate one-liner bullet points. Additionally, assign unique subheadings to 3-4 relevant bullets. 

Education & Certification 

Your educational degrees and certifications may be a requirement in the profile you are targeting. Let’s say your profile requires you to possess a bachelor’s degree. To pass such requirements, you need to include the details of your education and certifications. 

Further, including such degrees can help you with the ATS. If you possess a certification that covers a few modules required in the job description. You may include these modules under the certifications to display your skills. 

For example, here is how you can write it: 

  • Diploma in Digital Marketing | Guacamole Certification Agency | Pasadena, California | Mar ‘16 – Apr ‘17

    • Key modules: Social Media Marketing | Google AdWords | Brand Management | SEO

Additional Sections 

The information that falls out of the professional experience, education, etc. should be added in the additional section. 

These sections may include: 

  • Extra-curricular 

  • Training 

  • Publication

  • Languages

  • Volunteering Experience 

Though the above sections fall under the additional section’s umbrella, they can be equally important for your resume depending on the target profile. 

For a social worker, the volunteering experience will be extremely important. Or, for a researcher, the publication section will be fundamental for his profile. 

Hence, you need to prioritize what information is important for your target audience and modify the resume outline accordingly. 

Key Takeaways 

Here are a few takeaways from the article: 

  • Make sure the header just appears once, even if your resume is of two pages. 

  • Mention the summary at the top of your resume. 

  • Correctly name the work experience section and avoid long paragraphs. 

  • Keep the education and certification sections separate.