All major brands and businesses, top universities, great weather are some of the many reasons why Aussie has become The Lucky Country for international students and immigrants.
However, just landing in Australia will not guarantee you a job – especially one that pays well. Most well-paid jobs receive thousands of applications and go through a series of shortlisting and interviewing processes.
Reading this article will save you months of your time applying for jobs and the opportunity cost of living in Australia without a proper job. Also, we discuss:
- Resume examples and how each section should be written
- Job applications for international students
- What to include and what to exclude
- Ideal resume length in Australia
And many more.
Consider having a look, if you would like to create a professional resume with one of our ready-to-fill resume templates tailored to the Australian market.
Australian Resume Example
While the elements of your resume will change depending on the position you apply for, the basic structure of an Australian resume will remain the same. Here is an example of a perfect Australian CV for an administrative assistant.
Australian Resume for International Students
Australia provides a variety of opportunities for international students to study, work, and settle in the country. In other words: the Australian economy needs you .
International students will have access to a variety of full-time and part-time job opportunities based on the allowed hours during their studies.
This sample Australian resume is to apply for a part-time job in a restaurant (but it also works for other similar roles):
How do Australian Resumes Differ from American ones?
An Australian resume is similar to an American one in terms of style and format. A minor variation could, however, make your resume look odd in a pool of Australian resumes. Therefore you must consider the following points while preparing and sending your resume to Australia.
- American and Australian English have differences related to spelling and vocabulary: you should read further, identify those differences, and incorporate the relevant changes in your writing. Using correct Australian English on your resume will give you an edge during screening.
- In Australia, a resume is often called a ‘CV’: in your email body, you can mention that you have attached the CV to give it a more Australian feel.
- Australian resumes are lengthy compared to the American ones: how long they should be and what information makes up the additional pages will be discussed below.
Consider also how resume format, structure, and other information differ in Canadian resumes compared to Australian and American resumes.
How to make an Australian Resume?
An Australian standard CV layout would be a great place to start making your resume. We have highlighted each section with the information you should include and the best practices.
1. Start with The Resume Header
Your CV should start with your name and contact information. This is generally followed in many regions including Australia.
Name is typically the first name and the last name followed by the current job title (if it is relevant to what you’re applying).
Contact information should consist of your email address, a mobile phone number, and a link to your LinkedIn profile or the portfolio (if relevant).
- Do not include your mailing address unless the job advertisement has specified about it
- Update your LinkedIn profile pic, cover photo, and description before putting the link in your CV
- Don’t use official emails; use your personal email instead
2. Write a professional summary or an objective summary
This is considered the sales pitch in your CV. In this, your objective should be to communicate to the hiring manager that you’re a potential candidate for the position.
Writing a resume summary is simple if you know the right technique. The professional summary should consist of 2-3 sentences that describe you. Use the first sentence to describe your experience and how your expertise would help the new employer. In the second sentence, write about how that helped your previous employer and the results you achieved.
Just like this:
The objective summary would be the same as the professional summary: you should write your career objective instead of your previous experience. Objective summaries are used in case you do not have much experience for the position or you’re in a career transition.
3. Continue with Your Work Experience
This is the most important part of any resume whether it is in Australia, the USA, Europe, or any part of the world. This section can make or break your Australian job dream.
While writing your employment history, the format you pick matters. There are mainly three standard resume formats: reverse chronological, functional, combination. Though all three formats are accepted in Australia, the most popular one is the reverse-chronological format.
In reverse chronological resume format, you should list your experience starting with the most recent position. This provides the hiring manager the opportunity to access the most up-to-date experience of the candidates with ease.
Here’s a set of guidelines to follow when writing your experience section:
- State the company name, job title, and the period
- Use bullet points to describe your experience
- Use specific details of projects you were assigned to, achievements, and the tools used
- Use numbers wherever possible to add credibility to your statements
- Use keywords that are specific to the industry, the job role, and are mentioned in the job advertisement
An applicant tracking system is in place in many Australian companies which carries out the initial shortlisting of applications – your resume should be keyword-heavy to get through this step.
4. What to Include in The Education Section?
For most job positions, your education would come in handy even if it is not directly relevant. List down your education section giving priority to your highest academic achievements.
If you have completed any academic program in Australia, that would be an advantage.
In writing this section, use a consistent format. Also write to the point as this should be a small section of the resume.
Put the academic qualifications that are relevant to the job you apply for. For instance, if you are applying for a part-time job in a cafe to cover your expenses while you study, you might not want to put your Masters’s degree in the resume. Many employers don’t hire overqualified candidates because they think they won’t last.
5. What Skills to Put in The CV?
The skills section is common on resumes in many regions, though a generic list of skills does not work anymore – also in Australia.
The skills of a candidate could be either soft skills or hard skills. What most hiring managers expect is a combination of these two types.
Soft Skills: also called character traits. The skills that describe one’s relationship with other people. These skills are difficult to measure.Instead of just putting up a list of soft skills in your skills section, identify 3-5 most important skills required to perform your duties on the job.
How do you find these?
Employers often describe the personal traits they expect from the candidate in the job advertisement.
Hard Skills: the ones that are easy to prove. Hard skills are specific – they are often based on the industry and the job role.
6. Should I Put Additional Sections?
Of course! Additional sections are a great way to showcase some of your most marketable skills. A separate heading on your resume gives the information more visibility.
In an Australian CV, the following additional sections are recommended:
- Volunteer experience
- Computer skills
- Licenses and Certifications
It is not required to include all these additional sections in your resume. Putting more of these sections would make it difficult to achieve the main objective of additional sections which is more visibility.
What Is a good Resume Length for Australia?
Typical Australian resumes are quite lengthy compared to the USA ones. There’s no hard and fast rule as to how long it should be, but definitely more than one page like in the US.
For professionals, three to four pages is a good CV length. For entry-level jobs and recent graduates, try to make the CV two pages.
You should utilize this space to present the most important information about yourself – being relevant to the position you apply for as much as possible. Most applicants from the USA who spent hours compressing their resumes to fit one-page standard struggle in Australia to decompress it to fit the Australian standards.
The important factor to remember here is that you should not expand your resume in a way that the information is not interesting to read or less relevant.
Whether it is in the US or Australia, it will be a human who will read your resume and make a decision. Write your resume as long as it has to be but as succinct as possible.
What should you not include in an Australian-style resume?
If there is some information, formatting, or features missing in your resume, it won’t be rejected, but if you include something the Australian job market considers inappropriate, it will.
Including a photo of you in your resume is considered a Capital sin in Australia. This is due to strict anti-discrimination labor laws and regulations. It is believed that the candidate’s photo could influence the employer’s decision of shortlisting for an interview.
The CVs that come with a photo is typically ignored to prevent possible discrimination lawsuits against the employers and recruiters.
There are however ways to bypass these and get the same benefits of putting a picture without breaking the law. Visit our detailed guide on Resume Pictures to learn about the countries where you should not include a picture and everything else about the topic.
Resume, CV, Curriculum Vitae in the Title
This is an old practice of writing resumes. In many countries including Australia, this practice is no longer accepted.
Recruiters already know the document is your resume when they receive it.
More than 15 years old experience
You should use reverse chronological order to write your experience section. This will allow you to showcase your latest experience first. However, some candidates list down experiences that are more than 15 years which are not relevant to the context.
While you’re allowed to write 3-4 pages for your CV in Australia, try not to include irrelevant or too old experiences to fill up the space.
Do not include personal information such as age, gender, religion, or marital status. These could lead to the rejection of your CV in Australia on the basis of anti-discrimination policies in recruiting.
Interesting Facts about The Australian Job Market
- The job market keeps growing
Simply “there have never been so many jobs available in Australia at one time”, an Australian labor market research study says.
The post-pandemic Australia is going to be full of well-paid opportunities and the government is opening up borders for international skilled workers who are interested to work, studying, and settling in Australia.
- Salaries are among the highest worldwide
As businesses in Australia are experiencing labor shortages, salaries are increasing further. In general, salaries in Australia are among the best salaries in the world. As of 1 July 2021, the National Minimum Wage is $20.33 per hour or $772.60 per week whereas this figure is adjusted every year.
- The healthcare and the engineering industries lead the market
Jobs in healthcare such as doctors, nurses, healthcare workers, hospitality workers will be in high demand. In addition, construction and engineering sectors will have many opportunities including construction laborers, brick workers, and plumbers.
Another sector falling into the high-demand category is accountants and finance professionals – for both government and private-sector jobs.
If your job search is in one of these categories, you’ll experience a higher level of demand – having a great resume together will help you land the best job.
Tips for Making an Australian-style Resume
These pro tips will make your next Aussie CV stand out from the rest of the pack.
- Read the job description or the advertisement to pick the keywords your employer care about – include them naturally in your professional summary, experience, and skills sections.
- Include a link to your LinkedIn professional profile or portfolio website in the header – check whether the link work in PDF and MS Word formats.
- Choose a resume template that represents your personality and tailor it to match the industry you apply to – check out our ready-to-fill resume templates. If you are creating your template, make sure your formatting such as fonts, font sizes, colors, and margins are consistent throughout.
- In Australia, skill certifications and licenses are highly valued by employers – if you do not have one, consider applying for relevant certification.
- Use a tool like Grammarly and check for general grammar mistakes as well as for Australian English variations in your resume.
- Write your resume tailored to the job instead of sending the same CV for every job.
- Write a cover letter that complements your resume – check out our cover letter templates to get an idea
Key Takeaways When Writing an Australian Resume
- Start your resume with the header – include name and the contact information
- The professional summary should consist of two sentences – one describing your expertise and how it would benefit the employer, and one explaining how it helped the previous employer.
- The experience section should not just contain a list of tasks you performed in your job – it should be results-oriented, with numbers to provide credibility
- Follow a consistent format to showcase your education qualifications – add relevant academic qualifications only.
- Write a combination of soft skills and hard skills – you’ll likely find the skills employers are seeking in a potential candidate in the job posting.
- Use additional sections to provide a pleasant surprise to the hiring manager – but ignore the irrelevant information.
- One page resume is not the standard followed in Australia – you can expand your resume into multiple pages
Frequently Asked Questions
Do Australians say ‘Resume’ or ‘CV’?
Australians use the words ‘CV’ and ‘Resume’ interchangeably – both referring to the same thing. However, again, we do not advise using the word ‘CV’ or ‘Resume’ at the top of the resume as a heading.
When you’re sending an email with your resume attached, you can use the word ‘CV’ in your body text to refer to the attachment.
What do Australian employers look for in a resume?
It would be your experience, professional summary, skills, and education sections consecutively. Some Australian recruiters, however, look for a solid professional summary that summarizes the candidate’s profile.
Most shortlisting is done based on the experience section. This also depends on the type of profession. For high-skill jobs, they would give priority to education.
Do I need a cover letter with my Australian resume?
In Australia, some employers expect cover letters while others would not. Also, some industries and professions require the applicants to send a CV with a cover letter.
In the following situations, a cover letter is useful:
- If the job advertisement states the requirement of a cover letter
- If you do not have much experience related to the job, but you would like to express your enthusiasm to work for the company
- Your CV is a general one which includes all your career history – you can use a cover letter to summarize what is relevant to the particular job position
Download Your Australian-Style Resume in Word or PDF