A good Java resume or CV can make a world of a difference to open more doors to your career. Here is a sample resume that is extracted from my book "Java/J2EE Resume Companion" for experienced Java professionals. Even if you are not an experienced professional, it will guide you as to what you need to work towards. As you get more experienced, you need to update your Java resume or CV to highlight your accomplishments as shown below. There are more eye catching resume phrases and sample resumes for novice, career change, intermediate, cover letter, etc covered in the book in more detail with explanation.
Track record of delivering quality Java/JEE based solutions over 8+ years in the Investment, Insurance, Finance, Telecommunications, and Retail industries.
2.0+ years as a hands-on architect, 2+ years as a technical lead, 3+ years in Java/JEE development, and 3+ years in system integration.
Well versed with entire development life cycle and facilitating agile practices.
Spearheaded the design and development of a Spring MVC, Spring, and Hibernate based mission critical system budgeted at $10 million, which earned high accolades in the independent code and design reviews conducted by an independent consultancy.
Provided technical leadership on the architecture, design, and successful implementation of a mission critical 24x7 Java/JEE application valued at $10 million at BrandName Ltd.
Enjoyed repeated success in understanding business expectations, building effective solutions, and facilitating agile development practices.
Re-architected, refactored, and performance tuned a Websphere and J2EE based online insurance application, which previously came down almost daily, became a true 24x7 applicationat BrandName Ltd.
Instrumental in building our Java/JEE consultancy teams at Consultancy Ltd to grow from 6 consultants to 25 consultants and technical pre-sales activity in placing the consultants at client sites.
Java Technologies:8+ years
Java 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, & 1.5, Swing, Applet, JMX, JDBC, and RMI. 3+ years in building stand-alonemulti-threaded and TCP/IP socket based applications
JEE Technologies:5+ years
JSP, Servlet, JSF, EJB, JMS, JSTL, EL, JNDI, JTA, and LDAP.
Spring (2+ years), Hibernate (3+ years) , Acegi, Spring-ws (6+ months), JSF Sun RI (2 years), Facelets, Ajax4JSF, JiBX, JUnit, Log4J, etc
Aug 2006 – Present: Brand name Ltd - Sydney
Position:Java/JEE Architect/Senior developer( Design & development focus of a $10 million dollar high visibility and mission critical project using cutting-edge technologies and frameworks.)
Architected a JSF, Websphere, Oracle, Spring, and Hibernate based 24x7 Web application.
Built an end to end vertical slice for a JEE based billing application using popular frameworks like Spring, Hibernate, JSF, Facelets, XHTML, Maven2, and Ajax by applying OO design concepts, JEE & GoF design patterns, and best practices.
Integrated other sub-systems like loans application, equity markets online application system, and documentation system with the structured products application through JMS, Websphere MQ, SOAP based Web services, and XML.
Designed the logical and physical data model, generated DDL scripts, and wrote DML scripts for Oracle 9i database.
Tuned SQL statements, Hibernate mapping, and Websphere application server to improve performance, and consequently met the SLAs.
Gathered business requirements and wrote functional specifications and detailed design documents.
Improved the build process by migrating it from Ant to Maven2.
Built and deployed Java applications into multiple Unix based environments and produced both unit and functional test results along with release notes.
Feb 2003 – Aug 2006: Consultancy Ltd - SydneyClients: Sure Insurance, ABC utility, and MQR Finance.
Position:Java/J2EE Technical lead/Senior developer (Leadership, design, and development focus of a number of Java/JEE based multi-tiered, high volume (10,000 to 100,000 users), and distributed applications.)
Managed and mentored a group of application developers, assigned responsibilities, elaborated use cases, managed project schedules, and module targets.
Reviewed code and encouraged developers to use key design patterns, such as façade, singleton, factory, command, proxy, strategy, decorator, etc.
Provided recommendations on OO design concepts, best practices, exception handling,and identifying and fixing potential memory, performance, and transactional issues.
Conducted interviews and made recommendations for hiring Java/JEE professionals.
Increased the number of JUnit tests from 30+ to 400+ in my watchful eye to improve the overall quality of the Java/J2EE based applications.
Produceddetailed design documents with design alternatives, pros and cons for each approach and reasons for the recommended approach.
Analyzed“What if” scenarios and exceptional conditions and made recommendations to fill the gaps identified in the functional specs and detailed design.
Position:Java/J2EE developer (Development focus of Java/J2EE based applications.)
DesignedanddevelopedStruts like MVC 2 Webframework using the front-controller design pattern, which is used successfully in a number of production systems.
Spearheadedthe “Quick Wins” project by working very closely with the business and end users to improve the current website’s ranking from being 23rdto 6th in just 3 months.
Normalized Oracle database, conforming to design concepts and best practices.
Resolvedproduct complications at customer sites and funneled the insights to the development and deployment teams to adopt long term product development strategy with minimal roadblocks.
Convinced business users and analysts with alternative solutions that are more robust and simpler to implement from technical perspective while satisfying the functional requirements from the business perspective.
Applied design patterns and OO design conceptsto improve the existing Java/JEE based code base.
Identified and fixed transactional issues due to incorrect exception handling and concurrency issues due to unsynchronized block of code.
Self-published a book entitled “Java/J2EE Job Interview Companion” (ISBN 978-1-4116-6824-9), which is a best seller at http://www.lulu.com and received 4.0 out of 5.0 star user rating on http://www.amazon.com.
Published a “Java World” article entitled “Some Java Topic”, which had over 40,000 views and positive review comments.
Hundreds of ready to use Java/JEE resume phrases. Use of Situation-Action-Result Statements. Results oriented and Key Areas driven. Soft skills and personal attributes are captured.
Shows you that a well written resume can invite you to interviews more often than many people more qualified than you.
Explains why technical skills alone are no guarantee of success and acquiring tons of certifications alone are not going to bring your next promotion or save you from being laid off.
Resume examples for freshers, career changers, intermediate, and experienced with eye catching phrases.
Ineffective resumes can result in prolonged job searches, fewer interviews, and very often, lower salary offers. Do you feel confident and good about your current Java/JEE resume and career progression? If you might no think so now, ask yourself the same question again after you have read this companion and have in your hands your completed, highly effective, customised, and well rounded resume.
You can't get a job if you don't have enough experience, but how do you get an experience, if no one is willing to give you one? This is a vicious cycle, and you need to break it by offering what the companies are looking for --Experience
If the market is hot, a well-rounded candidate with a decent resume and little or no experience could easily walk into an interview. But, during a difficult job market with economic meltdowns, one needs to have a highly effective resume with at least 1- 2 year experience or more. So, how do you beat this catch-22 situation?
Try for voluntary work through a number of different avenues discussed in Job Hunting Tips. Smaller companies, charitable organizations, and community services are more keen to get people on a voluntary basis. Voluntary work shows commitment and initiative, even if it is not mentally stimulating. It can increase your industry knowledge, give you the much needed hands-on experience, enhance your soft skills, and give you something to write on your resume without any prolonged gap of employment. Since the task of applying for a paid full-time position can take up considerable time, you could start working voluntarily 2-3 days a week, even weekends if required. Even if it does not involve Java/JEE, provided you can gain any other sought-after technical skills like SQL, XML, domain knowledge, and software development processes and methodologies that are easily transferable to your future dream job.
Now, on a more positive note, while gaining hands-on experience and learning on the job, you will likely uncover paid opportunities by being an excellent contributor with enthusiasm and personal growth or by networking with similar professionals you would not have met otherwise. Voluntary work is generally a win/win situation for both the employer and the employee. Even though larger brand name organizations may look more impressive on your resume and can give you a greater chance of potential internal paid opportunities, smaller companies are more likely to offer you a voluntary work, and also in general, you will not only get to learn more things faster, but also your efforts will get noticed and recognized quicker. You can even try contacting your local charities for any potential openings in IT. Don't be too concerned about the size or brand name of the organization, but pay more attention to type of skills, experience, and capabilities you will be gaining. Brand name or popularity may take you to the interview stage, but cannot guarantee success in interviews without the right knowledge, skills, capabilities, and experience. If you properly use the guidelines in my Java/JEE Resume Companion, you can draw on your other strengths and achievements to look more impressive on your resume than to just rely on brand name or popularity.
Contribute to open-source projects to gain much needed hands-on experience in sought-after technologies and frameworks. The choices are plenty ranging from widely used products such as NetBeans, Eclipse, GlassFish, etc to smaller hobby projects, which have been open-sourced by other developers. Pick the one depending on your level of experience, interest, and motivation. If your motivation is to learn Spring & Hibernate, then pick a project that uses both. How do you benefit from open-source project contributions?
Gives you a pretty good big picture of different technologies, tools and frameworks used in a typical application. A typical Java application uses Eclipse, NetBeans, or similar IDE, Java, JUnit, Log4j, Ant, Maven2, Spring, Hibernate, Apache commons library, etc. Try to analyze and understand how all these pieces fit together.
You get to read a lot of code and learn from it. You can not only learn the best practices, but also can learn to identify potential issues.
Write your own small programs just to learn the language and libraries (APIs) used in the open source projects. For example, Java APIs and Apache commons library that has very useful utility methods such as StringUtils, CollectionUtils, MapUtils, BeanComparator, Validate, etc. Observe the coding and formatting standards.
learn how to use the tools like CVS, SVN, Eclipse, Maven2, Net Beans, etc.
Experiment by making changes to your local copy of the code. Try going through JEE deployment descriptors, Spring, and Hibernate configuration files to understand how different pieces are wired up.
Self-taught projects and tutorials to build up confidence and acquire some level of experience with the sought-after technologies and frameworks. Some open-source projects can be a bit overwhelming for some beginners. So, choose carefully. Alternatively, you could take up some self-taught projects by using sought-after technologies and frameworks. While this can be an easier option, it is not easy to be disciplined and looks less impressive on your resume compared to open-source contribution. Having said that, this option is better than not doing anything at all. It at least, shows commitment and initiative with some level of familiarity with popular technologies and frameworks. Improve credibility by providing your URL or mentioning availability of your source code. What is even better is that, if your self-taught project is based on a creative idea and if you think it can be useful to others, you can open-source it or even try selling it.
Each approach has its own pros and cons. If you are a beginner and looking for work, voluntary work will not only give you the experience employers are looking for, but also can open doors for paid job opportunities. If you are already in an employment, and either not mentally challenged or not acquiring the required skills and experience, try contributing to open-source projects. If you are not in much luck with first two options, and sitting idly or you have a bright idea, then try working on a self-taught project, while looking for a paid job.
Resume is a key marketing tool in promoting your services. Most resumes fail because they
Fail to highlight achievements.
Fail to use action verbs and uses ordinary phrases without being results oriented and credible.
Markets him/her as just a techie (not as a well-rounded candidate) .
5-7 pages packed with irrelevant and trivial information fulfilling HIS/HER needs NOT the employer’s needs.
Starts with “responsibilities included” in many places.
One size fits all resume. The same resume is emailed or reprinted as required. This is wasting an opportunity to present you in the best possible way.
Important information is scattered throughout the pages in the resume.
Starts with a standard format:
Leaving out the objective, especially, if you are a novice or making a career change.
Elaborate career objectives.
Education details listing every course details and certificates.
Employment history listing every trivial and non related task.
Large skills list and failing to include relevant and highly sought after skills.
Comparing Ordinary Resume versus Outstanding Resume
Ineffective resumes result in prolonged job searches, and very often, lower salary offers. It can also negatively impact your self confidence. When people get a poor response to an application, they think that they are the problem, but fail to think that their resume could be the problem. If you really stop to think what monetary benefits an effective resume can bring, you will be motivated to put the extra effort.
Ordinary Resume: Markets you just as a techie. What really is the big deal in being a Java guru if you cannot understand how the business works and how you can contribute to add value?
Outstanding Resume: Markets you as a well-rounded Java/JEE professional with both technical and non-technical skills. Technical skills alone can be easily replaced, but not good technical skills complemented with good non-technical skills. This is very important point not only from your resume perspective to impress your prospective employer, but more importantly, from your career progression, surviving layoffs, and probation period perspective.This becomes even more essential if you want to find your next job via networking.
Ordinary Resume: Uses ordinary phrases without being results oriented and credible. Example: Performance tuned a Java/JEE based application.
Outstanding Resume: Uses perfect phrases in a clear and concise manner that emphasise your skills and highlight your accomplishments for potential employers. Example: Re-architected, refactored and performance tuned a Websphere and JEE based online insurance application, which previously came down almost daily, became a true 24x7 application.
Ordinary Resume: 5-7 pages packed with irrelevant and trivial information fulfilling YOUR needs NOT the employer’s needs.
Outstanding Resume: 2 - 5 pages depending on how much relevant experience you have clearly addressing prospective employer’s needs and nicely formatted (i.e. easy on the eyes and easy to read) resume highlighting your key strengths and skills with achievements.
Ordinary Resume: Starts with “responsibilities included” in many places. Example: My responsibilities included development, design………
Outstanding Resume: Replaces “responsibilities included” with on the job accomplishments. Fill your resume with SAR phrases. SAR stands for Situation-Action-Results. For example:Refactored inefficient code in a test driven manner to make it more maintainable and reusable.
Ordinary Resume: One size fits all resume. The same resume is e-mailed or reprinted as required. This is wasting an opportunity to present you in the best possible way.
Outstanding Resume: Resume is made relevant to the position you are applying for E.g. senior developer, architect, team lead, etc. Resume can also be tailored to industry or domain specific like finance, insurance, retail, telecom, software house, etc. It does not take much long to produce customized resumes based on the job specification.
Ordinary resume: Important information is scattered throughout the pages in the resume. Outstanding Resume: Important information is in the first page. Unless you impress the prospective employer in the first page, he or she may not read your remaining pages. If you are a seasoned professional, then draw on your hands on Java/JEE experience. If you have little or no experience, then draw on your academic qualifications, certifications, contribution to open-source projects, self-taught projects, part-time jobs, community projects, university projects, assignments, etc.
Tip: Don't name your resume document as just resume.doc. It makes sense to you, but when the recruiter goes through 100+ resumes, you need to name it more specifically. For example, arul-java-jee-5year-exp-resume.doc. The best tip I can give is, when you write a resume, always put yourself in prospective recruiter's shoes.
The second best tip is that if first page of your resume is not attractive enough with your accomplishments, it is most likely that your resume will not be read further. Most resumes just have a laundry list of duties. For example, my responsibilities included ...... This is not a way to write stand-out resume.
A CV or a Resume is an essential marketing tool in your job search or career progression. When writing a CV look at it from your employers' point of view in order to stand out against the competition (i.e. other candidates). Preparing effective CV presents a real challenge due to length, which can make them boring and result in important information being buried or lost in a long document. As a result your CV should be concise, your top skills and experience should be prioritized in the first or upper most section of your CV, well organized with the following sections: Profile, Achievements, Experience & Skills and last but not least your CV should be nicely formatted. Refer sample Java/J2EE Resume PDF download.
Profile: Convey your technical expertise in Java/J2EE . Don't list all the skills here (you can include the rest in the skills section).Just pick your major strengths like design experience, team lead experience, mentoring experience etc and highly sought after and relevant experience like Spring, Hibernate, EJB, JSF etc. Also can mention the relevant industry experience like finance, insurance, telecommunications, software house etc.
4 years of experience in design/development of Java/J2EE (Sockets, EJB, RMI,Servlets, JSP,JMS,JDBC,JNDI etc) based systems.
3 year experience in financial sector and 1 year in insurance sector.
2 year working experience and excellent knowledge in Spring, Hibernate and JSF.
Experience in Websphere, MQSeries, and JBoss
Solid background in Object-Oriented analysis and design.Good at various design patterns (GoF, J2EE patterns etc) and UML.
Excellent knowledge of XML, SQL, XSL and Web Service.
Experience in Test Drive Development (TDD) and agile methodology.
Achievements: Convey your achievements in Java/J2EE, which had benefited the application, department or organization. In addition to technical skills bring your personal qualities like passion, ability to communicate effectively with technical staff as well as business users (i.e non-technical), problem solving skills, ability to think in high level as well as drill down to detail, ability to handle pressure, ability to recognize and respond to objectives of an organization, ability to work in a team as well as independently etc. You can also mention your teams' achievements in addition to your specific contribution.
Migrated a poorly performing and outdated application to Spring, Hibernate, JMS and JSF based system for MQR Banking Ltd.
Identified and fixed performance and transactional issues for Fine Australia Technology.
Reduced the monthly commission Java based batch runs from 75 hours to 18 hours at Sure Insurance Corporation .
Mentored junior developers, provided technical guidance and motivated them to meet the tight deadlines at Online Banking Ltd.
Experience: List your current and previous posts (Most recent first) and how you applied some of the major strengths and highly sought after skills in Java/J2EE. List all the major projects you have worked on and your specific contribution. Also mention where you applied some of the key areas like design, fixing performance issues, concurrency issues, transactional issues, memory leaks etc. Also be aware not to turn this section into only technical stuff. In addition to technical areas mention any team lead experience or mentoring junior developers, how you managed to meet a tight deadline?, how you worked well with the business users? how well you applied your knowledge? etc.
IT Skills: List all your current & relevant Java/J2EE related skills. This section is not only vital for the employer but also for the employment agency to match your skills with the employer requirements.
Finally never settle with the first draft and always find ways to keep improving your CV. Spending enough time in your key marketing tool is definitely worth it.