Your work experience is an important part of why a potential employer should want to hire you. So, what does your current work history say about you? Does it make a potential manager take notice of you or does it only get a quick glance, never to be looked at again? Your work history section is the core of your résumé. As such, it has to be a strong foundation to be the focal point of your résumé. So, here are a few tips to help strengthen the work history section of your résumé.
For each work experience you list on your résumé, make sure to note your title, the name of the company, and the start and end dates of your employment. If you are still currently employed there, say so. An example would be: Construction Supervisor | XYZ Construction Company | August 2008 – Present. If you are with the same company and have received promotions, list out each job title you’ve held and specifics about the work you did in each role. Do you have a gap in your work history? Find out how to fix that.
Next, to bring life to your work history section, describe your job duties and accomplishments. Be sure to incorporate numbers and results of projects you’ve worked on. This is the area where you want to show how much of an impact you have made through your work. For example, instead of saying, “managed the budget of ordering office supplies,” say something like, “oversaw the office supply ordering process and saved the company $200 per month on purchases.” This latter option showcases what you did and just how well you did it by demonstrating the cost savings you created for your company.
It’s important to still keep these points short and sweet, but be as specific as you can by including some numbers and results. The numbers are the validation that potential employers want to see to ensure that you can do the job and do it well. Also, use power words to add some punch to your information.
So, in the end, here’s a sample of what your work history section should look like:
XYZ Construction Company | August 2008 – Present
• Oversaw employee safety procedures and successfully trained 100 team members about CPR and fire
• Won a new company contract and saved the company $3,000 in construction fees
• Managed a team of 20 construction employees with no turnover in two years
One other important note to make is to keep your work history section relevant to the job you’re applying for. It’s about tailoring your information. For instance, if you’re trying to get into a professional environment, don’t include a previous summer job as a dog walker. And, if you have a long work history of several different jobs, again, just pick out the work experience that is relevant to the new job you’re applying for.
These are just a few tips to help your résumé work history get noticed. Be concise, and again, it’s OK to brag on yourself a little here. You want to let the employer know why you’re the best for the job opportunity.