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Resumé Format – India vs USA

Students from India, after attending and completing studies at universities in the US, will get the chance to encounter the different resumés and templates of their seniors and friends.

Before everything else, you should know that it’s a normal thing that a resumé will evolve over time. A resumé tend to undergo a natural development, so it really takes time before “perfecting” one.

However, some students just don’t get it. They think that the resumé that they have is already the best and it will get them an interview call. Sadly, most of the time, they are wrong.

When professionals travel to the USA on work or business visas, a few try to find jobs and become a full time employee with a company in US.

Such professionals when searching for jobs within the USA, usually use the same resumé that they have been using in India. They simply don’t subscribe to the famous saying, WHEN IN ROME, DO AS THE ROMANS DO.

That’s why one has to undertake the proper adjustments in one’s resumé to make it effective. Here is a comparison of resumé formats / templates used in India and the USA.

Resumé Format – India vs USA

Here’s a good comparison of types of resumés used in India vs USA for technology and engineering job applications.

India USA
Used for Job / Internship
Search
Job / Internship
Search
Length 2 pages to mini book 1 or 2 pages
Personal Details Name, email, DOB, passport number, address,
passport expiry date, marital status
Name, email, phone, address
Importance of length The longer a resumé is, the better the profile This is not the norm being followed in the US and in all developed countries. Typically, companies will make their decisions in the first two pages. So make it compact yet substantial with your key experience and competencies why you should be hired.
Work Experience Work experience will include job position, company name, client name, duration, one page (or more concise) project description, responsibilities, platforms and tools used, etc. Responsibilities and things accomplished. Executives with many years of experience will have around 1 up to 2 pages (maximum) of resumé.
Other Items Includes Declaration of Authenticity (I hereby declare that the above mentioned information is correct to best of my knowledge), date, signature, references email, etc. References, links to websites, email address, LinkedIn profile, Twitter ID, etc.
Dos and Don’ts Don’t use the same resumé / template when applying for jobs in the USA. Consider getting your resumé written by a professional resumé writing service. [Top Mistakes in Entry Level Student Resumé .] If your resumé needs fixing, consider getting your resumé written professionally.
Suggestions Don’t assume that same resumé that you used in India will get you a job in the USA. Do your own research and learn what most hiring / recruitment managers look for in a resumé. Remember, because busy people will be looking at your resumé, it only has a few seconds to create an impression. If you have a 2 page resumé and are not getting any positive response after applying for many jobs, consider having your resumé reviewed but professionals. When your job search strategy is not working, it’s a very clear sign that you have to follow a different approach. Making changes to your resumé is the first and best area to start with.
Sample Resumes Professionally Written Resumé Samples

If you are using a resumé template used for job search in India, it will not work most of the time especially when applying for jobs within the U.S. and in other countries.

You can either spend some $100 to get a professionally written resumé or spend lots of time fixing (but to not much avail) your current resumé.

Related: What Recruiters Look in Your Resumé in 6 Seconds

 

17 Comments

  1. Sneha Iyer on January 29, 2013 at 1:15 PM

    very helpful post

  2. rosylee on September 12, 2012 at 4:36 AM

    Hi raghu,

    Nice post. Thank you for providing such a great information. This blog is very informative for me as well as job seekers. Keep on sharing.

  3. Jereen on April 7, 2012 at 6:24 AM

    Hi HSB.
    I have completed my MBA (finance) and i have done B.Com as under graduation in India. I have 2yrs experience as Accounts manager. I would like to settle down in US. It would be helpful for me if you suggest me an idea. Kindly tell me will I be able to get a H1B visa or I need to enter US with F1 visa by applying for some colleges. And if i go in through F1 visa which course will fetch me a permanent job in US.

    Thank you,

    Regards,
    Jereen. 🙂

    • Anon on August 2, 2012 at 9:27 AM

      Marry a NRI!!! best idea..:-P

  4. Harshini on December 28, 2011 at 2:18 PM

    Hi,This is Harshini doing her Bacheolors in BIotechnology final year final sem.Planning to go to Canada for doing my Masters,Can anyone suggest the best Universities which has programs related to Biotechnology,Human Genetics,nano technology.Pls guide me and let me know if there is any University in US whcih dont require GRE score and only TOEFELSCORE WOULD DO.
    Regards
    Harshini

    • Albert on May 27, 2012 at 4:59 AM

      There are many universities in US that don’t require GRE. But most of the good universities require GRE unless you have a decent GPA from a well-known university (at least IITs in India), or, some publications, projects or any other accomplishments. The admissions committee might ignore small differences in GRE if you are highly skilled in something. For a list of universities, check some rankings like USNWR, QS, Times, ARWU, Webometrics etc. Also, browse through the universities’ websites and their Biotechnology departments and see the ongoing research there — research outcome is an indicator of the quality of a university.

  5. sreenadh on December 9, 2011 at 2:31 AM

    Hi All,

    here are my details

    * GRE Score – 305

    * TOEFL Score – yet to Take on jan 2011, hope to get 90

    * Class 10th – 80.04%

    * Class 12th – 91.18%

    * Engineering Aggregate – 69% (up to III year, IV-I yet to come,no backlogs)

    * Semester Planning to Apply – fall 2012

    * Department and Major – Electronics&Communication, interested on COMMUNICATION side

    * Work Experience – NIL

    please let me know the best Universities which I can apply for my score.also please suggset me more universities with full financial aid low cost of living and job facilities. and I am adaptable to any climate

    Also looking for a budget which is not more then 15 lakhs. In a state to take bank loan

    Thanks in advance.

    • Albert on May 27, 2012 at 5:17 AM

      For a list of universities, check some rankings like USNWR, QS, Times, ARWU, Webometrics etc. Also, browse through the universities’ websites and their ECE departments and see the ongoing research and other things. There is no guarantee that a lower ranked one is always easier to get than a higher ranked one — depends on the quality of your application and the availability of seats too.

  6. narendra naidu on July 5, 2011 at 1:16 AM

    Hi All,

    here are my details

    * GRE Score – 1040(730Q + 310V)

    * TOEFL Score – yet to Take on Dec 2011, hope to get >90

    * Class 10th – 69.05%

    * Class 12th – 73.52%

    * Engineering Aggregate – 72.5% (up to III year and 2 sem left and with 4 backlogs)

    * Semester Planning to Apply – fall 2012

    * Department and Major – Electronics&Communication, planning to go for MIS/MS in VLSI or EMBEDDED SYSTEM or TELECOMMUNICATIONS

    * Work Experience – NIL

    please let me know the good Univs which I can apply for my score.also please suggset me more universities since i would like to do my major in electrical engineering and with full financial aid low cost of living and job facilities. and I am adaptable to any climate

    Also looking for a budget which is not more then 20 lakhs. In a state to take bank loan

    Thanks in advance.

    • Albert on May 27, 2012 at 5:17 AM

      For a list of universities, check some rankings like USNWR, QS, Times, ARWU, Webometrics etc. Also, browse through the universities’ websites and their ECE departments and see the ongoing research and other things. There is no guarantee that a lower ranked one is always easier to get than a higher ranked one — depends on the quality of your application and the availability of seats too.

  7. Sahana on January 26, 2011 at 3:20 AM

    HSB is a storehouse of help and such a lifesaver.

  8. Rachna Shenoy on May 27, 2010 at 7:24 AM

    Hi,

    I am in the US on H4 visa. I know I am not allowed to work as per the visa, but I would still like to try.

    I have a MBA (HR) and 5 years of professional experience. Can you suggest some ways to format my resume as per US standards and also what I should expect in my job search?

    • HSB on May 27, 2010 at 8:50 AM

      How can you work if you are on H4?

  9. Garg G on January 15, 2010 at 7:02 AM

    @ Harish C S

    you can always google to get some resumes. That will help in finding keywords in resume (action verb and so on.) but if you are more interested then you have to do some research.

    if you dont like doing research there is the option of asking someone to write resume for you for a fee. but dont expect to get a matching resume which matches your qualifications and you can use it just like that. every individual is unique with unique set of skills. google will help to get sample formats and keywords u can use but to build a whole resume it is upto to you grind your mind or get professional help.

  10. Harish C S on January 13, 2010 at 10:41 PM

    No.. i dont get sufficient info in that link!! It drifts to some resume writing website… Please tell me if i could include my facebook id in my profile.. What will they look for in that?

  11. Garg G on January 11, 2010 at 11:38 AM

    @ Harish C S

    check the link in the last row of comparision

  12. Harish C S on January 11, 2010 at 1:21 AM

    Can we show our facebook profile too? Better give me a model for the US style resume.. It ll be very helpful.

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