Sunday, 13 October 2013

How to prepare a Korean resume - Part 2

We move along now to Part 2 of the Korean resume which covers the second page of the CV. Now remember that this template can be found here! It's available to everyone and can be customized and adjusted to your hearts content. 

On closer inspection there is not much information to cover in the second page of our Korean resume but what is needed is an explanation of the obvious missing section that is arguably the most important in an English CV - The references! 

A Korean resume does not have a section for references nor will you at any point in the process be asked to provide contact details for one! Seems weird right? As it turns out its not that they don't want to stalk your former life and find out all the dirty details, it's just rather that this information is seemingly provided to them in the first page under your previous work experience. Rather than let you determine your own reference from your previous workplaces, Korean recruitment officers will directly contact one of your previously employers and speak with the recruitment officer there to find your line manager and proceed to ask the tough questions. This entire process could be terrifying for some - let's face it, we don't always leave previous jobs under mutual circumstances and not being able to dictate who you would like a new prospective employer to contact can leave the candidate feeling quite vulnerable! That said we are 외국인 (Foreigners) and most if not all of our previous work experience is overseas and not too many recruiters will make the extra effort to dial overseas! 

Now if it you are a student and you are graduating from a Korean university you may want to do the reverse of the reference situation and request a professor to contact the recruiter directly on your behalf. Sounds unorthodox yes but it will undoubtedly get your information into the recruiters line of vision - not too many foreigner applicants (if any) are going to have a professor call up the company and say a few kind words - could be what makes the difference! Not to mention that your professors are normally well connected and there is numerous opportunities to be found through that network - so before applying to any job ask your professor first because he may well in fact know someone of importance at said company! To be honest this type of 인맥 (Personal networks) is your best tool in finding employment (which I plan to cover in separate post)....but I digress....

Ok, let's move on now to the final section of our Korean resume.

How to prepare a korean resume

Computer Skills
So did you know young Korean graduates when they are doing their 취업준비 (Preparation for finding a job) get certificates to say that they posess adequate skills at using the Microsoft office suite? Not to be cynical but after going through a Korean multinationals graduate program as the only foreigner I can safely say that those kind of certificates are about as meaningful as the blue pen license I received in year 2 of primary school. Most workers at my entire company only knew how to use Powerpoint which they used to make their official reports! (More on this insanity in later posts!). Regardless in this section you can just put the normal spiel about MS Word, Excel and PPT. You'll notice the same scale as before of 상 - 중 - 하 (Expert - Intermediate - Beginner). You will also have a section to add some extra computer skills such as Photoshop, HTML, Javascript etc...

Activities and Honours
I've noticed in some English resumes that this section is often left out; For a Korean this section is often the place where they list activities such as if they have been overseas on exchange (Which they almost all have!) any volunteer work experience and any involvement with hobby groups or other organisations.. In my Korean CV this is where I listed information about my scholarships to study overseas, my involvement with the Korean - Australian chamber of commerce; Alumni groups and also the few times I was Emcee at various events. 

So with that all covered, all that's left is the declaration under which you should type your name and stick on a digital signature and we are done!

With our Korean resume now complete is time to get our Korean writing skills in motion and begin preparing our 자기소개서 (Self Introduction) or rather cover letter.

Continue to Part 3 - The Self Introduction>>


  1. Which kind of digital signatures can be accepted in this case and which software can be used by creating them except for adobe acrobat?

  2. Hello, I just found this blog, I read all 3 parts, thank you so much for explaining everything but I have a question please: should I write my full name? or just my first name? my first name in Korean is 4 syllables (very long).

    Thank you a ton :)