Main purpose of resume is to win an interview. If you get an opportunity for an interview, it works. If it doesn’t, it isn’t an effective resume – forget all efforts you might have put in.
A resume is your advertisement, nothing more and nothing less. Your resume is a great advertisement if it tells prospective employer: “If you hire me, you will get these specific skills and experience sets.” It presents you in the best line. It convinces the employer that you have what it takes to be successful in this position. Your resume is successful only when it is pleasing to the eye that the reader is enticed to pick it up, read it and then call you for an interview.
Also, a resume is required to pass the employer’s screening process (requisite educational level, number years’ experience, etc.), to give basic facts such as companies worked for and contact information. An up-to-date address and a telephone number which will always be answered during business hours.
Resume is also used to establish you as a professional person with high standards and excellent writing skills, based on the fact that the resume is so well done (clear, well-organized, well-written, of the highest professional grades of printing and paper). For persons in the art, advertising, marketing, or writing professions, the resume can serve as a sample of their skills.
One of the most important purposes of resume is to provide professional references, background information and “informational interviews”, a concrete creative way to cultivate the support for your case.
Recently while working for new collaboration, I realised one more reason to have resume. It can be used as a covering piece or addendum to another form of job application, as part of a grant or contract proposal.