First and foremost, congratulations.
You’ve realised that to be competitive in today’s post-COVID job market, you’ll need a resume that closely matches the job market’s demands in Australia.
Where do you find a perfect resume example from Australia? Right here.
In fact, we’ll give you something better.
Rather than just giving you a free resume Australian resume template (download here), we’ll also teach you how to format each part of your resume so that it catches the attention of Australian recruiters.
How to get accepted by Aussies
But first, allow me to clarify a few lesser-known but crucial aspects of Australian culture. Knowing this will help you increase your chances of getting noticed in the Australian job market.
Aussies value confidence but they despise arrogance. People who are too brash generally don’t get along with Aussies.
When writing your resume, it’s important that you portray yourself as a self-assured and capable professional.
You don’t want to sell yourself short. But you also don’t want to come off as an employer’s blessing from God either.
That’s why it’s important to strike a balance when writing your resume.
How to structure an Australian Resume
Let’s get into the detail now that you’ve got a sense of the cultural context in which you’ll be writing your resume.
In terms of resume length:
- A one-page resume is not appropriate. It lacks the level of information that Australian recruiters need.
- Don’t go over five pages (exception is when you’re applying in research or medical profession where you have to list down your publications, continuing professional development, research and so on)
- Aim to limit your resume to three to four pages. This is acceptable and the usual norm in the Australian job market.
In terms of formatting:
- Keep the formatting clean and simple.
- Use appropriate font types and sizes (for example, Calibri, 11 pt).
- Tables, columns, pictures and graphics should not be included. Most Australian businesses use ATS (Applicant Tracking System) software, which can be quickly confused by excessive detail
In terms of spelling:
- Make sure your resume is written in Australian English, which means ‘Organise’ rather than ‘Organize,’ ‘Labour’ rather than ‘Labor,’ and ‘Licence’ rather than ‘License.’
- This should go without saying, but I’ll say it anyway: make sure there are no spelling or linguistic errors!
- Be sure to check our Australian resume checklist found here.
Australian Resume Sample
In this section, we’ll show you a good sample of an Australian resume. We’ll also explain why it works.
In certain countries, including a headshot at the top of your resume is a standard procedure. In Australia, this is not the case.
Regardless of how attractive you are, you should not have a snapshot of yourself on your resume. This applies even to those who are applying as flight attendants or cabin crew.
Your professional profile
This is where you can add some personality and branding.
Most applicants will use this section to describe their broad experience, credentials and areas of expertise. Consider the following scenario:
“As a highly analytical Financial Controller who has 10+ years of experience across a range of sectors, I offer expertise in M&A, divestment and commercial functions.”
While that strategy is successful, go one step further and get to the heart of what makes you special and unique:
“Combining an Executive MBA with strong commercial acumen, I bring 10+ years of breadth and depth of experience enabling sustainable growth for complex organisations in both private and public sectors.”
Your career history
Based on a recent research, recruiters focus their attention on your current job title, company and dates of employment.
It’s important that you have this information on the first page of your resume, as much as possible.
Also, recruiters in Australia usually look at the past ten years of experience. You can go back further if your roles 10+ years ago are still relevant to what you’re applying for.
Your bullet points
Recruiters will now want you to dig into the ‘core’ of your employment.
Here, you would highlight your expertise in a manner that appeals to an Australian audience.
As previously mentioned, Aussies hate arrogance and tend to see accomplishments as evidence. That’s why we recommend that you consider these also in preparing your resume. Here are some ways to do it:
- Don’t use first-person reference (for example: “I oversee a team of 12 IT professionals” should be written as “Oversee a team of 12 IT professionals”)
- Don’t use third-person references (for example, don’t write: “Michael oversees a team of 12 IT professionals”)
- Show immediate results at the beginning of each bullet point (for example: “Formulated a strategy to enhance employee engagement, leading to a 20% improvement in staff satisfaction scores” should be written as “Improved employee satisfaction scores by 20% with the formulation of a strategy that directly enhanced employee engagement”)
- Be sure to read our guidelines on how to write impactful bullet points.
Education and continuing professional growth are essential to Australians, as they are to most Westerners.
Include the name and major of your degree, as well as the awarding University or institution.
There’s no need to include your high school if you already have other qualifications.
Recruiters in Australia are aware of the limitations imposed by data privacy laws and do not want to see names, emails or phone numbers of referees on your resume. There are some exceptions though. For example, some roles in the Australian Public Service would require 2-3 referees.
You also don’t have to write “References available upon request” as this is a waste of precious space.
- Don’t just copy job descriptions from the internet. That’s a surefire way to blend in with the rest of the candidates.
- Keep an eye on your online presence. LinkedIn is an essential aspect of the Australian recruiting process and can be a part of the professional brand.
- Patience is required. Owing to the large number of stakeholders involved in the recruiting process in Australia, it can take a long time.
That’s all we’ve got for you today.
We hope these suggestions are useful, and please let us know if you’d like to receive other career hunting tips specific to Australia.
Alternatively, you can send across your resume for a free resume critique.
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