How to create a resume for foreign it-companies

Is it time to write a resume to move to another country?

Then come in, sit down, pour coffee. I will tell you how to do it.

First of all, the standards that I will talk about are relevant for the United States and Canada, but such a summary is suitable for other countries outside the CIS. Each country may have its own characteristics of compiling a resume, for example, in Germany.

In general, if you are a star and top companies are standing in line for you, then a resume can be written on the knee purely for formality.

Conditionally - the first line about what worked in Google. The second thing that N startups did. The third is about studying at the university. This resume ends.

But, if you do not have this situation, then the resume should meet the expectations of Western recruiters.

There are a lot of opinions about what these expectations are, I will share my experience.
I am not a recruiter and not HR, so my opinion may differ from the opinion of some people from this profession.

Why do I need a resume?

A resume is an occasion to start a conversation with a potential employer. Good companies get an unthinkable amount of resumes, if you do not have a recommendation from an employee of this company, then the resume may simply not reach the people who make the decision.

In addition to the internal content, you need to make the proper design, LinkedIn auto-generator is not suitable here.

Common mistakes of people from the CIS

The first thing you must do is throw out the photo, gender, age, marital status, hobbies and any other personal information that does not apply to work. If this is not done, then with a high degree of probability your resume will be immediately sent to the basket to avoid possible discrimination charges.

Small digression
Recently I came across an article where the director of a large CIS IT company accused candidates of hiding age and other data in a resume. This, of course, is tin; outside the CIS he would have been condemned right there. Well, okay, if you decide to leave, then this does not concern you.

General tips

The resume must include contacts - email and phone. It is advisable to have a local phone number of the country where the resume is sent. A good option would be to have voicemail on it, as In many countries, the practice of leaving voice messages is common. If there is no local number, you can omit the telephone number.

Provide a link to the online version of the resume, or to a profile on LinkedIn, or to the current version of the resume on Google documents. Recruits may lie with recruiters for years.
If there is a standing profile on the github, point it out.

Do not overdo it with the design! Fewer separators, font sizes, etc.
I saw several resumes with a two-column layout. In my opinion, this is not worth doing.

The summary should be a maximum of 2 pages, and better - 1. It may seem difficult to fit all your experience on 1 page. Focus on your truly worthwhile achievements, rather than shove the introduction of the next framework at the front.

Some details can play you a minus, for example, a conditional certificate according to Microsoft Excel. Are you really so proud? A professional should distinguish useful skills and achievements from minor ones.

Do not indicate irrelevant experience in the hope that in the eyes of the employer this will be a plus. Show that you are a suitable candidate, and do not tell your biography.

Move all the important information as close to the beginning as possible.

It is best to use the pdf format, as it is cross-platform.

If your English is far from ideal, be sure to submit it for verification - grammatical errors in the resume are unacceptable.

Resume structure

At the top of the resume should be indicated the position for which you are applying. The name can be made smaller and removed a little further. For an English-speaking recruiter, your name does not carry much semantic load.

Next up is the section where you describe why you might be of interest to the employer. Sometimes this section is called “Objective”, but you can never call it at all.

Below you can list the main technologies that you worked with. This may not be relevant for top companies that hire a person not for a specific technology. But for lesser-known companies that are looking for people on a specific project, it makes sense.

Then comes a description of previous companies and positions. Indicate the main responsibilities and achievements, show what you did. Not a company, not a team, but you. What was your contribution?

Do not use words like “participated,” “developed,” “helped,” etc. Use “implemented”, “developed”, “made”, etc.

Try to use specific numbers, for example:

  • increased system performance by 30%
  • developed a new service that can process 10 times more data than the old
  • finished 3 projects
  • increased SLA by 1 percent
  • etc

Be prepared to explain how these figures were obtained - I was asked about this at interviews.

It is best to fill out these records in the following form: company name, position, work dates, country, text describing the responsibilities, then bulletins indicate achievements.

You can specify the technology used.

Further indicate information about education.

If there are standing professional certificates, then they can be indicated after the education section.

At the end, you can specify additional information that is not so relevant - a blog on YouTube or a profile on a lite code.

Resume life cycle

Now we will consider the stages that the resume goes through, getting into the company and what should be in the resume for them to go through.

In a good way, you need to create a resume for three groups at once: automatic systems, a recruiter and technical specialists.

It is better to adjust the resume for a specific position and company, or find a recommender who already works in the company. These options are time consuming and are suitable only for those companies where you really want to go. In other cases, send a universal resume in bulk.

1. Applicant Tracking System

If you are going to a small company, or someone has recommended you, most likely your living person will look at your resume. In other cases, recruiters often use the Applicant Tracking System. This is the first step in filtering out a resume. These systems were created for large corporations, which were filled up with an incredible number of resumes and recruiters cannot view them manually. Such systems look for keywords that match the text of the vacancy. For this stage, it’s good to have a lot of keywords in the resume.

Test your resume on similar systems. Use services, for example, TopResume, which will run a resume for several ATS at once.

2. HR specialist

The second stage is a living person, HR or a recruiter.

This is the gateway to the company. HR does not decide whether you will receive an offer, but without it the resume will not reach those who decide. Here a large number of relevant words can play into your hands, because many recruiters do not distinguish between Java and JavaScript. But on the other hand, verbosity can play against, since hr looks at the resume for ten seconds. Keep a balance.

3. Technical specialist

A technical specialist (or group of people) is one on whom receipt of an offer is more dependent. Depending on the company, the interviewer can either ask questions relevant to the resume, or look through the resume 30 seconds before the interview and talk for a couple of minutes on topics that interest him. In any case, at this stage extra keywords and a large volume are not desirable. For example: Javascript, Angular, React, JQuery, c ++, C #, java, and a bunch of words about which you heard about and, perhaps, even did something with it, but do not have real knowledge. You may be asked about everything that is written in the resume, and without answering, you may find yourself in a very awkward situation.

Do not use words that few people know in your resume. They should be understandable to a person who does not specifically understand these technologies. If the interviewee cannot understand what you did there, it is your fault.

Cover letter

A few words about cover letter. In discussions, there are often sayings that the cover letter is simply necessary and without it they will not consider the resume. I can not agree with this, but it definitely increases the chances.

In the cover letter you need to explain what your motives are, why you apply for a specific position in a particular company, what interests you in it, why a recruiter should pay attention to you, why you are suitable for this role. Edit cover letter for a specific vacancy.

Resume Writing Services

Here I will talk about my experience with one of the most popular resume writing services - .

Turning to them was a big mistake.

I often stumbled upon their ads, job sites offer free to check resumes with their help. It is clear that a free resume check is a lure, and if a living person participates in this check, he spends no more than a couple of minutes on it. Why do I think so? I used their services and received a resume from them, and then sent this resume from another account to them for free verification. And in response he received the standard “your resume should be rewritten by a professional writer”. Interesting, huh?

It is enough to read reviews on the Internet to understand that this is a money withdrawal service (why didn’t I do this before paying for their services? I hoped that would not advise bad things ?).

But let's get to my experience.

I had a draft, which was generally good and corresponded to most of the advice that I gave here. It had a design not quite typical for the US market and, possibly, a bunch of spelling mistakes.

I paid for the services of and sent them this draft in the hope that I would get a perfectly written resume. As a result, I had to make a lot of efforts to get something acceptable at the output. Several times I had to write technical support and ask to change the writer, because the first people considered it normal to take proposals from my draft and modify them in such a way that they lost at least some sense. In my opinion, the writers from this service are very far from IT.

About compiling a linkedin profile - it's generally tin. They simply send you a file that says in which fields to copy information from the resume.

Be that as it may, I hope I have at least no grammatical errors in my resume. Together we brought him to a sane state (in fact, he still needs to be completed).

An example of my resume

As a result, I got a resume that copes well with its functions. It was enough to get an interview both in top companies and in little-known ones. It helped me find employers in Canada, the USA, and Europe who are ready to make a work visa (and then the green card in the case of the USA).
Actually, I don't really like this version of the resume, but it seems to be doing its job.

Looking at this resume, you probably have a question: “Artyom, how is it that your resume does not always correspond to the tips that you have been talking about for so long. Especially with regard to brevity. ”

Yes it is. There are several reasons for this.

Such a verbosity was introduced by a writer from topresume and I was partly sorry to throw out paid words and sentences.

I mainly focused on the US enterprise and looked through a lot of resumes from this area. It seems that such verbosity is acceptable for resumes in this area.

Perhaps in the future, when I already have substantial foreign experience in my resume, I will cut out all that is superfluous and squeeze it down to 1 page.

In general, it is quite difficult to assess how much the resume becomes more attractive for recruiters after some corrections. Therefore, the topic of writing a resume is controversial.


When you already have a resume that claims to be the final version, send it to other people for evaluation. From the outside, all this may not look as rosy as you think.
Despite my negative experience with TopResume, I still recommend sending a resume to their (and similar services) free check - you can get a couple of practical tips, at least regarding optimization for ATS.

I also recommend posting a resume on a forum where more experienced people will criticize it. You should not immediately correct the resume according to the recommendations from the forum, but it is worth considering. Here is an example of a forum topic where you can post a resume if you are interested in the US market: Criticize a summary, please .

A word of advice - do not wait until you have the perfect resume. Start sending the first versions as early as possible and look at the feedback.

Also popular now: