The resume gets you the interview; the interview gets you the trail; the trail gets you the job. Most people are eliminated by bad presentation on paper. I know that not everyone is a good speller, let alone a good writer; but if they don't take the time to make sure the information is correct, that lack of care (poor spelling, missing contact information) indicates lack of attention -- would you want to hire a cook who doesn't pay attention to details? I wouldn't.
When I was in a position to hire cooks, this is what I wanted to see on a resume:
- Name and every possible way to contact -- ALL SPELLED CORRECTLY. Address is helpful, but I would never eliminate anyone based on where s/he lived. (I think foodpump is on thin ice, because that action could be viewed as discriminatory, at least here in the US.)
- Experience, in chronological order (regular or reverse, doesn't matter as long as it's consistent), with dates, position, and contact information for a reference -- ALL SPELLED CORRECTLY. I liked to see total experience, not just culinary, because I believe that most job skills are transferable. And I wanted THE TRUTH. If I found out later that you were lying, you were eliminated.
- Education -- just basic information of school name, location, degree or certificate completed or courses taken if no degree was achieved -- ALL SPELLED CORRECTLY, and all the truth with no embroidery.
- Special skills and abilities not otherwise listed, such as languages, computer experience, etc. Again, I didn't care if the skill was not specifically "culinary." ALL SPELLED CORRECTLY!
The last thing I wanted to be bothered with was hopes, dreams, and "I want a job where I can work with people"-type nonsense. Wouldn't even read that stuff.
I used resumes to see if someone had very basic job-seeking skills; the interview was to fill in the outline and check out the applicant's attitude and actual knowledge. The trail clinched it (or not). Most applicants never made it to the trail, of course.
Of course, there are intangibles: the best cook I ever hired had gaps between jobs (he had been in prison), not much education, and his only culinary experience had been as a fry cook in a chicken joint. And he told me that he wanted to become a real cook after watching "Three's Company." :look: But he also came across as honest and really willing to learn -- and he was, and did. I wish I could have kept him on forever.