What Should You Include on Your Resume?

There are standard things we all know to put on our résumés –name, contact information, education, etc. But what about those gray areas? What do you do about non-relevant work experience or a gap in employment history? They asked for references – does that go on your résumé, too?

Lucky for you, the industry experts at Doherty Staffing Solutions know a thing or two about what to include and what to leave off your résumé.

What to Include:

  • Experience. Keep in mind the position you are applying for and evaluate your résumé. Do you think your serving job in college is relevant to the job you are applying for? It might if you are looking for a position in customer service, but if you are searching for a dental hygienist position, leave it behind.
  • Skills. Have you learned skills that will help you perform the job? Make sure to include them! But if you are looking for a position as a welder, it might be best to focus on the skills pertaining to that profession.
  • Volunteer work. Any time that you take out of your busy schedule to volunteer at a local not-for-profit organization can help a future employer determine you have a lot of character. Keep in mind: community service is not the same thing as volunteering.

What NOT to Include:

  • Short-term jobs. Most of us have taken a position that we find out quickly is just not for us. While that is OK, employers see frequent job changes as a red flag.
  • Fancy fonts. When it comes to the formatting of your résumé, keep it simple. Let your skills and achievements speak for themselves and skip the bright colors and funky design elements.
  • Salary. If you want to look naïve, include your previous salary history on your résumé. Sharing this information immediately revokes power when it comes to negotiating your salary.
  • References. These should always be prepared as a separate document and available upon request. Don’t mention “References available upon request.” (It generally goes without saying.) Save space on your résumé for what matters – YOU!

Looking for more help creating your resume? Visit our Job Seekers Resources page on or submit a contact form to get connected with a local Employment Expert!