Adds work experience points

How do I write your CV work experience?

If the professional summary is the aperitif, your work experience is the main course of your resume.

Recruiters and hiring managers will read the work history on your resume to see if you have the experience required for the vacant position. You will also use this data set to compare yourself to other candidates and see who is best for your company.

Your work history shows potential employers what type of employee you are. It shows them whether you will be an asset to your team, a job hopper, or just a fake one.

Ready to Write a Great Resume Section? (graphic source)

In this tutorial, I'll show you how to write your work experience on a resume without overdoing it and repeating your job description. You will learn how to best format your resume and the strategic advice you need to distinguish yourself as a great candidate at every stage of your career.

What to include on your resume

How you approach your work experience on your resume depends on how long you've been with the workforce. We will address advice to fresh graduates first, then young professionals, and also address managerial experience.

1. Fresh Graduates - Resume work experience

Figuring out how to write the experience section of their résumé is the second biggest hurdle for new graduates, besides finding a new job. Entry level beginners don't want to appear inexperienced, which is why it is so tempting to get the truth out about summer jobs.

Transferred skills in focus

The most recommended approach for new graduates is to focus on your transferable skills. Another is to use your internship experience. Combine all of these experiences with the job description of your target position.

For example, if you keep weekly appointments as a sports editor for your community newspaper, your time management skills are invaluable for many entry-level jobs. You should also emphasize your attention to detail, research, and communication skills.

Use better job titles

Another thing you can do is play your job title - for good reason. Represent your previous babysitting jobs as a childcare company where you looked after children from different families in your neighborhood. You can include Child Care Manager as a job title and then share your successes in providing educational and recreational activities.

Include relevant experience

You might be tempted to write about your coursework and class projects in your employment history. Don't waste this space. Employers look for well-rounded candidates who can perform well outside of the classroom, not just test takers.

Internship experience, volunteer experience, and temporary positions, however, are not wrong with your career path as long as you can combine the experience with your career goal.

2. Young Professionals - Resume Section

Delete information about your coursework, GPA, and internship after you've had at least one full-time paid job related to your undergraduate degree. Separate volunteer work and other side appearances in a separate area with their own headline, e.g. "Different work" or "Voluntary work". From now on, you should only include relevant work history on your resume.

Write down your work experience over the past 10 years, five years if you've been in an IT job. If you were promoted in the same company, write your last position as the job title and then list the previous position you filled in the bullet points.

3. Managers and executives - continue resume

Donna Svei, Executive Resume Writer and Recruiter, says:

"Recruiters want more experience for leadership candidates, three to seven years - sometimes more, depending on the job level."

At the management level, employers look for candidates who can add value to the organization with little training. What matters to them is not the time you have spent on your previous jobs, but the contributions you have made in your office.

How far back in your work history should you go?

There is no right or wrong answer here. They can depend on how much work experience is required for the job posting. But what if there are no working time requirements?

I've spoken to some recruiting experts to see what they have to say.

Advice from recruiting experts

Matthew Burr, HR expert and founder of Burr Consulting, says:

“In general, your employment history should include your last three positions. However, if you change jobs every year or two, you may want to add more job entries. "

Karen Bender, HR consultant at Stony Acres Consulting, didn't mention the duration. She says:

“Employers want to see enough history to understand the depth of an applicant's experience. For seasoned applicants, this does not mean that you need to describe the first parts of your career in detail, unless they are relevant and unique for some reason. "

Some recruiters think removing the oldest five to ten years in your employment history might trigger a red flag. To avoid this, you can put previous positions in a separate heading with the title "Previous Career" and fill it in with the job titles, company name and length of employment. No need to explain your services and obligations in more detail.

Which work history resume format is best: functional, chronological, or hybrid?

Any resume format can be useful depending on your personal circumstances.

1. Chronological curriculum vitae

A chronological resume lists your professional career with the most recent position at the top. It is the most popular resume format as it shows clear career development. Only use this format if you already have a few years of work experience and a solid work history.

2. Function summary

Your performance and employment information are separate. All achievements and skills are categorized according to the main requirements of your target occupation, while only the company name and duration are shown in your employment history.

Because this format focuses on your skills rather than your previous job titles, it is well suited for freshmen with little work experience or for those with significant job gaps.

3. Hybrid or combination recovery

The combination resume format is flexible so you can rearrange it according to your strengths. In this layout, your professional summary is followed by your list of skills and achievements instead of your work history. It is widely used on management and executive resumes.

What's in your work history

Here are the various components that you should include in any job history entry:

  • Job title: Use the industry-standard and unabridged version of your job title to avoid confusion. Write "American Sign Language Interpreter" instead of "ASL interpreter" and "Deputy District Attorney " instead of "ADA
  • Place: Include the city and state you worked in, especially for jobs where licensing information and state laws affect your job.
  • Company Name: As with the job title, you should include the full company name of your employer rather than an abbreviated version.
  • Duration of employment: Month and year.
  • Short job description (optional): Add a one-sentence description of what you do and how it adds value to your employer.

How do I write life points for work experience (with examples)?

Select the services to be added

Write achievements that you can link to the skills listed in the job description. Jill Gugino Pante M.Ed, Director of the Career Center at Alfred Lerner College at the University of Delaware, also suggests the following:

“Check out the company website and social media websites to get a feel for their values, mission and goals. For example, if a company values ​​good customer service, some of your bullet points should include examples of when you exceeded customer expectations. "

Show on the job initiative

New York Jobs' Susan Ranford believes that your company and initiative work best. She adds:

“Include the results that show you've developed a new income stream for your business or found a way to streamline a process. Recruiters want candidates with a story to be creative and pragmatic. "

For example:

"Chairman of a committee in Human Resources that centralized work functions and eliminated unnecessary tasks, saving over 7,000 hours of work."

Showing initiatives isn't just limited to saving time or making more money for the company. Running your own freelance business or taking on additional tasks outside of your job description is also showing initiative.

Use factual and clear descriptions

Imagine a point that reads:

"Several years of creative and imaginative art classes at Calaveras Hills School."

While the bullet includes the employer's name, it lacks the details. "Creative" and "resourceful“Are subjective and do not reveal anything about the candidate's teaching methods or classroom performance.

Here is a better example

"Textbooks were supplemented with age-appropriate art examples and attracted the students' attention through various teaching techniques such as music, films and practical learning."

This point shows a clearer example of the applicant's teaching skills and methodology. It also includes a service "caught the attention of students. "

Write about what you've done, not just years of experience

The years you've worked for a particular company are already listed at the top of each job listing. Therefore, you don't have to repeat it in a bullet point. Instead, write what you have contributed to your employer's business over those years. Employers want to know that. For example:

"Four years of experience selling various computer chips and hardware parts with a proven ability to increase sales in my area."

There is no point in reporting on your ability to improve sales in the city you work in as every salesperson is expected to do so. Instead, you should write about other details of your work, such as the products you have sold or the supply that you have exceeded. For example:

"Spearheaded a guerrilla marketing strategy that increased SaaS subscription sales by $ 357,000 in one year."

The example above demonstrates the candidate's creativity, initiative, sales specialty, and demonstrable achievement.

Always use the skills used, the actions taken and the results

Murtaza Bambot, co-founder of InternBlitz internship search site, says,

“I always tell applicants to emphasize what they did, why it was important, and what skills they used. This combination tells your story while selling your resume at the same time. "

Here is a great example from Bambot

"Generated $ 600,000 in the pipeline in two months from 350+ cold calls per week and 15+ email campaigns to approximately 2,500 prospects."

You can also use one of the two combinations:

1. Results - Challenge - Action

An example from Bambot:

Managed Governance Document to Log status updates for more than 25 projects in 5 departments by Cooperation with 13 project managers

2. Action Verb Skill Results

From Alissa Carpenter, owner of Everything is wrong and that's okay:

Developed and implementedKey account strategies with retailers that resulted in an average increase in sales of 6% over the previous year and a reduction in the marketing budget of 13% ”

Tips for creating a section with a better resume

Know the difference between good and bad bullets

Would you be impressed if you read the bullet points below?

"Juggled several deadlines for three different design projects"
"Encouraged collaboration between account managers and designers"

I know I wouldn't be

Multitasking and teamwork are expected soft skills in almost every job. So there is nothing inherent in using bullet points that emphasize these skills. Unfortunately, the way these bullets are written sounds like boring responsibilities.

If you want to include soft skills in your bullet points, you always need to look out for notable situations in which you have used these skills. Here are a few better examples:

1. For cooperation

"A team of eight executives and designers was motivated to create a convincing offer for a large telecommunications company."

2. For multitasking

"You played along with the successful start of three email campaigns for an initial online course worth 3500 US dollars"

Use a descriptive job title

Never exaggerate a previous job title, but you can always use an improved or clearer version that better illustrates your role. For example:

"Customer Service Specialist" is better than written "Specialist for credit card billing and customer service"

Use the correct power words

I've written an in-depth guide on power words to use in effective resumes. It comes with a list of over 100 strong words that you can use for almost any skill or achievement imaginable.

Click here for the guide:

Quantify your accomplishments

"Revised Sykes Customer Service Checklist to Improve Customer Satisfaction"

What is missing on this point? The dot mentions an improvement, but it doesn't say how much customer satisfaction has increased.

Here is a better version:

"The quality assurance checklist for the Sykes Customer Service team has been revised to improve customer satisfaction by 15%."

Add job-specific information

Your job title may contain specific industry keywords, such as: B. License information, software or tasks. Adding this information to your bullet points is the easiest way to customize your resume for each job.

Here are specific examples:

"Top 10% in the exam for testing dental hygiene in Texas"

"Improved Facebook Ads Cost Per Click for Online Gaming Customers"

More helpful résumé resources

Get a professional resume template from GraphicRiver or browse our curated list below:

We also have plenty of tutorial resources to help you make a great resume:

Remember: the right words don't have to be on your résumé

Do you sometimes feel inappropriate that your professional experience on the résumé is inadequate compared to others? Could that be why you are not being called back?

There is a great chance your resume is just missing the right details. Use power words, numbers that illustrate successful projects, and spend a little more time curating job titles and bullet points in your work history.

Design your work experience to highlight your achievements and the best qualities as a candidate. Avoid spreading the truth, however, as it will not help you find the position the job comes in when you come for the interview.