Geographic proximity, cultural similarities, and generous mandated leave and benefits can make Canada a very attractive place to work. But how do you get started? How do you write a Canadian resume and is different from other countries resume format?
This guide will help you learn everything you need to know about Canadian resume format. And by the time you’re done reading this post, you will be very well conversant with Canadian Resume Format and How to Write a Resume for Jobs in Canada.
Is Canadian Resume Format Different from American Resume Format?
Canada and America have their similarities, but there are plenty of differences too. But do those differences extend to the Canadian resume? The answer is no. A resume in Canada is exactly the same as an American resume. No need to worry about all the differences as you would when applying for jobs outside North America.
Let now take a look at some Canada resume tips to make sure your Canadian job search gets off on the right foot.
Best Format for a Canadian Resume
The best resume format for Canadian jobs is the same tried and true classic as in the U.S. It’s known as the chronological or reverse-chronological resume.
The chronological resume, which is also known as the “reverse chronological resume” is the most popular resume format out there. Particularly advisable for those with rich work history, the chronological resume prioritizes and lists your work experience and achievements from most to least recent.
It puts your work experience up front and it’s the format recruiters are most familiar with on both sides of the border.
Here are the sections a typical chronological Canadian resume consists of:
- Resume header with candidate’s name, job title and contact information
- Resume summary or objective
- Work experience
- Additional sections
Note: Standard Canada resume format also follows the same layout rules as you’d use in the U.S. A good layout ensures that you’ll have a document that looks professional and is easy to read.
Here are some basic resume layout guidelines:
- Set your resume margins to one inch on all sides and double space between sections to create plenty of reader-friendly white space.
- Use line spacing set to 1.15.
- Stick to 1–2 pages for your resume length.
- Choose an easy-to-read resume font.
- Use a larger font size to emphasize your resume section headers and make important information standout with bolding and italics.
How to Write a Canadian Resume
The same rules for resume writing in Canada is also applicable in the U.S. You’ll find detailed advice in our comprehensive how to write a resume guide. Below is a brief section-by-section breakdown:
- Add a Header with Contact Information
Include your full name, job title and contact details. These should consist of your phone number, email address and LinkedIn profile[If any]. There’s no need to include your address on your resume. It’s not needed and it wastes space.
- Write a Resume Profile
Your resume profile acts as the introduction to the content that follows. The general rule is to use a resume objective if you’re just starting your career and a resume summary if you’re more experienced. A summary of qualifications is another good option if you’ve got plenty of experience and achievements to highlight.
- List Your Work Experience
This is the most important part of your Canadian resume. 90% of employers prefer their candidates to have work experience, so you need to get your work experience section right to capitalize on that demand. Here’s how to do it.
- Use reverse chronological order, starting with your current or most recent position.
- Start with the basics, your job title, the employer’s name and location and dates of employment.
- Add up to six bullet points describing the role and start them off with resume action words for added impact.
- Use accomplishment statements to showcase your professional attainments. And don’t just say what you did, prove how well you did it with quantified achievements.
- Include resume keywords to help you pass the applicant tracking systems (ATS) that scan your job application.
- Mention Your Education
Often overlooked, but still necessary. List your degree, your school and its location, and your graduation date (use an expected graduation date if you’re still studying). Only include your GPA on your resume if you’ve just graduated and it’s 3.5 or above.
Another thing you can include in your education section if you’ve just graduated is relevant coursework and extracurricular activities.
- Include a List of Skills
The skills employers look for in a Canadian resume are the same as for the U.S. Be sure to include a mix of hard skills and soft skills, and target your resume to the job by keeping your skills section relevant and focused.
- Make Use of Additional Sections
Adding them gives you the chance to add extra skills and achievements and stand out from other applicants.
Here are some of the best options:
- Hobbies and personal interests
- Foreign languages
- Certifications and licenses
- Volunteer work
- Achievements and awards
Note: There’s no need to add references to your resume or even to write “references available upon request.” If an employer needs your references they’ll ask for them later on in the recruitment process.
What Not to Include in a Canadian Resume
The same rules apply as for an American resume. Here are the things you shouldn’t include on your resume.
- A resume photo
- Private information such as marital status, age and race.
- Salary requirements
Canadian resume format is exactly the same as American resume format. Follow the same guidelines and focus on writing a resume that’s tailored to the job you’re applying for and best shows off your strengths as a candidate. It’s that simple. Wish you All the best for your Canadian job search!
That’s it, you’re all set to craft the perfect Canadian style resume.
Note: A great cover letter that matches your resume will give you an advantage over other candidates. Learn how to write a perfect cover letter from our previous here.