So, you sat down to start your resume/CV and can’t figure out how to write your resume summary statement.
We’ve got your back!
In this article, we will outline a few essentials you need to write a great resume summary.
But first, what exactly is a resume summary?
In a nutshell, the resume summary is replacing the summary objective.
What do the resume summary and summary objective do?
- Both go near the beginning of your resume right above your work experience.
- Both strive to give an eye-catching statement that sums up the applicant’s goals.
- Both should be only a few lines long.
Okay, so if they have all these things in common, what’s the difference?
Why is the resume summary a better tool than the resume objective?
They sound really similar, right?
But it’s important to note that there is a difference between a resume objective and a resume summary statement.
What Is a Resume Objective?
Just about every resource online will tell you to avoid using an objective.
They are extremely boring and outdated!
This method lost popularity long ago.
There can still be a little bit of confusion, however, when it comes to telling the difference between a resume objective and a resume summary statement.
Objectives are more of an “I” statement which states what you are looking for.
It’s more focused on what you want and you need.
Here’s an example of the old fashioned objective:
I am seeking a position in the retail industry focusing on sales or customer service.
Okay, that’s nice.
But what does your reader really learn from this?
If they have a job opening for a sales or customer service position, chances are many of the applicants have experience in this area, so this is kind of a given.
This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t include this experience, but consider how this experience makes you different and a better fit than other applicants.
(More on that in a minute).
So in other words, the resume objective typically doesn’t tell the reader much other than what you want.
Chances are the hiring manager knows you want this job already because you are applying!
Instead, your resume should focus on how you can add value to the reader.
An objective does the complete opposite and leaves them with more questions than answers.
What should you write instead of an objective then?
What Is a Resume Summary?
The resume summary statement has replaced the objective.
It is much more effective at communicating how you will benefit the company.
The fact of the matter is, your resume is not for you.
Rather, it is for the person reading about you.
This is your first real impression to the company so you have to nail it!
The resume summary is arguably the most important part of the entire resume.
If you have a boring summary statement that doesn't relate to the position, it’s unlikely that anyone will continue reading.
Here’s an example of a resume summary:
Software Sales Account Executive with over ten years of experience. Versatile, bilingual professional with account management experience ranging from mid-sized accounts to multi-million dollar accounts. Ability to prospect and close hundreds of deals per year, while ensuring individual account satisfaction and growth.
See the difference?
The resume objective only tells your reader what you are looking for.
The resume summary, on the other hand, outlines your experience in a way that is more attractive to hiring managers and employers.
Consider what you can do for the company as opposed to what the company can do for you.
(The next most important sections of a resume can be found in the top 5 resume sections you can't go without.)
Why the Resume Summary Is Better Than an Objective
While the resume summary statement gives your reader more useful information, there are a few other characteristics that make this the better choice over the resume objective.
Some reasons are:
- It’s very straightforward and to the point.
- The job title is stated right away, so it’s clear that if this is a sales position, we have a solid fit.
- We show off our experience by stating the number of years we have in the industry.
- Finally, we demonstrate our value to the reader. We did this, for example, by telling them we have the ability to manage accounts of all sizes, as well as close hundreds of deals per year.
Make sure to tie in your skills with what you believe the company needs, specific to the job description.
Yes, you might swing and miss at a few opportunities before you get your resume summary just right, but that’s okay!
This should be no longer than three or four sentences.
You will explain your experience and skills in other sections of your resume.
Focus on your most relevant skills in combination with the skills that you feel separate you from other applicants and you are guaranteed to write a great resume summary statement.
Want to learn more about the experience section of your resume?
Need more help?
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