As with most things, there is a right way and a wrong way to format a resume. The following gives the generally accepted format for creating a good bilingual resume.
Language of Submission
Unless noted otherwise for positions within the GTA, submit your bilingual resume in English. Assume that the person reading it will be English speaking.
The objective is the first section of content on a resume. State your objective clearly and ensure that it is in sync with the position, for example, “dynamic, bilingual candidate looking for a role in the accounting department of a growth oriented company where I can make a contribution to the bottom line”.
Summary of Skills
This section summarizes your skills and abilities and should only give information relevant to the position that you are applying for. Be brief but descriptive and present your skills in a bulleted list. Also, list the most impressive and relevant items first.
Example summary of skills:
• Bilingual, French and English, oral and written
• 3 years of AR experience in a fast-paced environment
• Excellent customer service skills
• Ability to multi-task and resolve issues in a deadline driven environment.
• Advanced user of MS Office Suite
List your positions with the most recent at the top – if the position was a contact or a temporary position say so as you do not want to give the impression of instability. Under the title of your position list your duties and accomplishments. If possible, include meaningful and measurable details. An example of an accomplishment might be, “Reduced the DSO by 30 days or implemented processes which saved the company 20% over the last fiscal year”.
For applicants with a long working history include the last 10 years only. An exception would be if the past experience is relevant and goes back more than 10 years list the employer, the position, the date and one or two lines about the position. Do not include irrelevant positions, for example, if you have 5 years’ experience as a Bilingual Customer Service Representative and are applying for a Bilingual Customer Service position it is not necessary to put that you were a caregiver or worked as a server in McDonald’s.
Education and Professional Development
In this final section of the resume, list your education and/or any pertinent Professional Development courses: Start with the most recent. For example, “B.A. Honours, University of Laval, 2013”.
Before Submitting your Application
Once the resume is completed review, edit and proofread a few times. If possible, have a second pair of eyes read it. Ensure that there are no grammar or spelling errors. If you are cutting and pasting text, ensure that the font is consistent. An inconsistent style creates a messy, unappealing document and shows a lack of attention to detail. If applying for several different positions ensure that the stated objective matches the position at hand; there is no point in having an objective as a Bilingual Customer Service Representative when you are applying for a role as a Bilingual Accounting Clerk.
Don’t forget to follow up with the employer a few days after you have submitted the resume to ensure that your application has been received.