The Perfect Resume Starts with a Summary of Skills

SkillsIt’s resume common sense that you should lead with your most impressive attributes at the top of your resume. After all, you only have a few seconds to impress!

Steven Provenzano, CPRW/CEIP and author of 9 resume books, including Author: Top Secret Resumes & Cover Letters, gave us a really awesome resume tip that will make sure your best attributes are front and center on the perfect resume:

You don’t need to label this 2-3 inch deep section “Profile” or “Skills,” but it’s comprised of 3-4 bulleted sentences that develop your essential skills and abilities relevant to the job you’re seeking right now. It is not a re-hash of your job history or education.

Rather, it’s the value of your job history, education, volunteer or military experience – positioned right after your name and a basic TITLE related to the type of work you’re seeking.

Keywords used in your Profile/Skill section can be as basic as sales, marketing, client relations, target marketing, project management, staff training, budget planning or forecasting.

Provenzano offers this example:

  • Skilled in sales, marketing and new business development, including full responsibility for account acquisition and management.
  • Proficient in total project management, from technical staff training to product design, development and rollout in major national markets.
  • Comprehensive experience in finance, accounting and C-level audits, including strategic planning, team training, quality control and client relations.

“The Skills section gives you total control over how you’re perceived by employers. Without this section, you’re basically a victim of your work experience and education, and what if your most recent experience isn’t related to your current career goals?” Provenzano adds.

How do you develop your summary of skills?

  • Write three sentences that state what you are really, really good at – where you clearly add value to your potential employer; leave off the hyperbole (“dynamic” has no place on a resume) and overused words (“responsible” is the worst offender).
  • Quantify, whenever possible, to show impact and results (dollar signs, percentage signs and numbers are your resume’s best friends)
  • Most important, tailor your Skills section to the needs of the employer; pull language and keywords directly from the job description that closely match your skills.

Your summary of skills demonstrates your confidence and clearly states your value proposition – all easily scan-able in those critical first few seconds a recruiter reads your resume. Build your perfect resume… and see if maybe you get a few more calls for interviews than you may be getting now!





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RitikaAbout the Author: Ritika Trikha is passionate about scoping out top-notch job advice in the career-sphere to help you find a job you love. Ritika has 99 problems but an unhappy career isn’t one! She’s a writer and an optimist (and Jay Z’s No. 1 fan). When Ritika’s not writing stellar advice articles, she’s obsessing over social media. Connect with her via CareerBliss Tumblr, Pinterest and Google+! Follow Ritika on Twitter!


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