Resumes: Creating a summary statement that wins interviews.
This month, our resume writing service is focusing on how we can improve the quality of the summary of qualifications within our resumes. So, we wanted to publish this short blog for you that will help you get started in crafting better resumes. These are a few key points we discovered in our research.
The summary of qualifications — the hardest yet most prominent part of the resume — is the brand statement that you are conveying to your future employer when submitting your resume. This is the paragraph at the top that will become the focus (and first impression) in showcasing credentials.
The summary of qualifications answers 3 questions:
· What experience do you have?
· What skills do you have?
· What proof do you have that you can deliver?
You may consider any of the following ingredients to get these 3 questions answered:
· Number of years experience in an industry
· Competencies, technical skills, soft skills
· Highlighted accomplishments or awards/accolades
· Degrees, certifications, licenses
· Employers or schools of recognition
Consider…what ingredients should you use in crafting the summary statement? You will not necessarily use all of these ingredients listed above, but it’s important to decide which will be most to your advantage in applying to a job.
If you have quite an impressive list of computer skills, you should perhaps mention them right off the bat in this summary of qualifications. If you speak 10 different languages (and this is relevant), you should definitely include this in the top paragraph. If you went to Harvard Business School, I’d mention it in this top paragraph as well.
I’m using exaggerated examples here to illustrate that you should be focusing on your biggest strengths when crafting the summary statement at the top of your resume. The result should be a well-rounded summary of your qualifications that make you stand out from the rest of applicants.
Here’s an example of a short summary statement (this one was taken from Susan Whitcomb’s Resume Magic, which we consider the ultimate resume guide for us resume writers):
SUPPLY CHAIN/LOGISTICS MANAGEMENT
Purchasing, Materials, Inventory, Production, Distribution
APICS-certified with 20+years of experience in ISO 9000 manufacturing and industrial food processing environments. Delivered 17 million cost savings through expertise in operational analysis, master production planning, quality/continual improvement processes, and integrated technology. Commitment to partnering with cross-functional teams, support staff, customers, and international suppliers has contributed significantly to successes.
How long should the summary statement be?
The answer is that it depends on how much experience you have to summarize in your resume. Here’s a quick guide, however, on how long we generally like to see them:
· We say a minimum of 3 sentences.
· We say a maximum of: Full paragraph + several bullet statements.
· Compare summary length to how long your resume is (thus, how much experience you have in your resume). 1/6–1/8 of the entire resume is a good rule of thumb for your summary statement.
We hope this tidbit of information was useful in helping you create a better resume (and get you one step closer to your dream job). As always, if you want resume help, please reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.letseatgrandma.com.
Team Let’s Eat, Grandma
If you’d like to speak to a writing consultant today, schedule a complimentary resume review phone call by visiting calendly.com/career-scores/free-initial-phone-consultation.