Optional sections on your resume

Updated: Jun 6, 2020

This is Part 5 of a series of posts on the basics of improving your resume. Read our previous post about the additional section here.

What else should I add to my resume?

A common question we receive is about additional sections that people want to add to their resume. All of these are optional, and we recommend not using some of them at all. Let’s get started!

Workshops and training programs attended (Avoid)

In the course of their jobs, most people attend some level of training or workshops. Unless this is a certification, we recommend avoiding adding this to your resume. More space for your work experience!

Certifications (Optional)

If you have received any certifications relevant to your job, or the job you're applying for, mention it on your resume. Remove any certifications that are not relevant to your job or what you’re applying for. Here’s an example:

Rewards & Recognition (Avoid)

R&R, such an important part of most organizations! We understand that you want to talk about this but advise against adding a separate section for R&R and other awards. Any awards received at work should be mentioned in the work experience section as one of the bullet points.

Don’t forget to mention what the award was for. Not everyone may understand what award you received. The example below clearly mentions what the Star of the month award is and why this person received it.

Additional (Optional)

There’s a variety of assorted information that we recommend grouping under the additional section.

  1. Non-college related extracurriculars, such as volunteer work, or being a trained classical dancer. College extracurriculars should be mentioned in the education section of your resume.

  2. Hobbies and Interests: Try not to use cliches such as ‘Watching movies' or 'Travelling' or 'Hanging out with friends'. Mentioning hobbies allows a recruiter to remember something memorable about you. My resume talks about my love for gardening and how I love pressing plants. It’s a great conversation starter!

  3. Languages: Unless the job you’re applying for requires you to know a specific language, it is unnecessary to add this to your resume.

That’s all for our series on the basics of improving your resume! Stay tuned for more resume related blog posts.

View our previous posts in this series:

1 - Improve your resume: Contact information

2 - 7 ways to improve the education section of your resume

3 - 9 tips to improve the work experience section of your resume

4 - Should I add a summary or skills to my resume?

5 - Optional sections on your resume

6 - Finishing touches on a resume

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