Professional Summary for Resume

The manner in which you write your resume will determine if you get the job. It is paramount that you write your resume in a way that will convince your employers that you are serious about the job.

Resume Objective and Summary

A resume summary statement can be referred to as a short paragraph usually at the start of the resume which highlights a job applicant’s professionalism before getting into the content of the resume itself. The primary objective of a summary statement is to demonstrate a job seeker’s unique skill through their past accolades and accomplishments. A resume objective, on the other hand, refers to the statement that lists one’s reason for seeking employment. The objective statement of a resume should synchronize with the requirements of the job you are applying for. It is usually about one to two statements of your resume. However, it is quite important to note that resume objective statements are rarely used these days in resumes since most job applicants find it taking up a lot of unnecessary space yet offer very little value in the resume as a whole. Employers always receive hundreds or even thousands of applications for a single position that they have advertised; only the impressive resumes will influence their decision of shortlisting you as a viable candidate for the job.

The portion of the resume that they are ordinarily particular about is the resume summary. Some hiring managers only look out for this area. Most do not have the time of perusing through your whole resume thus giving you the more reason for having a well-written resume summary. Any sub-standardly written resume summary may lead to your resume ending up in a pile thus rendering you jobless for a long time. This article outlines various guidelines on how to go about creating the best resume summary and increase your chances of acquiring your dream job. When writing a resume objective or summary statement, you should research the relevant keywords and job requirements for the respective job posting. It is also essential to comprehend the different functions of the two statements. Primarily the two accounts differ from their goals to their metrics and how they are expressed as well. Hence, to write a good resume that will capture the attention of employers, you need to know when to use either of the two statements or when to combine their use for that perfect resume eventually.

Advantages of a Resume Summary

The main benefit of having a resume summary is that it helps your resume to get noticed faster amongst the heaps of other resumes employers have to go through. Usually, when the managers in charge of hiring are evaluating dozens or even hundreds of resumes, they often go through these resumes shallowly. In the process, they end up missing a lot of information that would have made you clinch the job. Thus, when you begin with a statement that clearly describes why you are qualified, it is most likely that these managers will give your resume a second look and possibly shortlist you as the potential candidate for the job.

A resume summary will also help highlight your critical skills and experiences earlier. This is especially helpful for those who have extensive working experience which when stated in totality may make the resume seem somewhat complex or bulky (Bostwick 67). The summary section will thus aid to reduce this complexity and narrow them down to the most important and relevant points. The summary may also heighten the attention of the hiring manager if what they are looking for is highlighted in the resume summary.

How to Write a Professional Resume Summary in Five Steps

Getting the attention of hiring managers is usually the most daunting tasks. It is almost impossible to get them to read the whole of your resume. However, a resume summary can help capture pretty much everything that the hiring manager needs to know about your professional life. Thus, this section will take you through the five short steps that you can use to write that attention-grabbing resume summary that any hiring manager will find it difficult to overlook.

Step 1: Your Resume Summary Should be Written Last

One would often experience difficulty in writing a resume summary first most probably because of the lack of the proper elements to do so. It is easier to do so once you have completed all the other sections of your resume. For your resume summary to be all-inclusive, ensure that all the other parts are complete and efficient. Also, you should make any add-ons or removals from the other parts of the resume on your summary.

Step 2: Start Your Resume Summary with Your Title

The resume ought, to begin with, a single descriptive adjective though this is optional for most cases. It should then contain your professional title since this speaks tons about your professional life even before the hiring manager can delve into the resume summary itself. Any necessary certification you have and the years of experience you have should all be mentioned at this point.

Step 3: Ensure that Your Resume Summary is packed with Your Accolades and Skills

While writing your resume, it is good practice for you to take time to reflect on your career. There are fundamental questions that you will need to answer which includes; what are the brightest points of your career? What are you personally proud of achieving so far in your career? What do you love most about the job you are currently at? Apart from your next career, what do you do best? Once you have adequately answered these four questions, proceed to write a professional summary that has two to three achievements, two to three skills, the name of your intended company and finally what you are hoping to do for your prospective employer if granted the job opportunity.

Step 4: Desist from Making Your Professional Summary Generic

It is difficult for people to fathom how possible it is to summarize their careers to just two to three skills and achievements. This explains why most people experience difficulties in writing a resume. As a result, most end up giving vague points (generic) that do not make any sense to the hiring managers. This is how an objective and specific summary statement looks like in a situation where a job advertisement requires fast typing, accuracy, and efficiency as the major requirements:

Example 1

Extremely precise data entry administrator with seven years of experience, intending to clinch the position of Strategic Level Data Entry. Ten-Major Typing Speed of 4500 KPH with minimal errors. Kept a ninety-nine percent accuracy in two quick data entry dockets, inputting seven hundred and fifty to a thousand words every day. Improved efficiency for Lenoir Motors by thirty-four percent by automating all tasks using Microsoft Excel.

After presenting such a resume summary, all hiring managers will be calling you back to offer you employment in their firms. The resume summary captures accurately the exact skills that are required of the job. The achievements you have stated makes the resume to speak for itself, and the hiring manager will choose to spare some time to go all through your resume to find out more about your professional skills. Compare the resume summary example above with example two below;

Example 2

A data entry clerk with seven years of experience in the stock analysis services. A very swift typist who is exceptionally skilled in all the Microsoft office packages which include Microsoft Access and Microsoft Excel. Previously worked at two separate data entry clerk jobs

The skills stated here are quite good, but the main problem with them is that they do not fit the role. This is a perfect example of a general resume summary. A hiring manager will barely look twice at such a resume summary and resume.

Step 5: Quantify (Add Measurements) to Your Accolades to Make Them Realistic

There are some achievements which when mentioned may seem random until they are quantified. For instance, telling someone that you undertook a big project may not be catchy since ‘big’ is a relative term. However, quantifying that the big project cost you a hundred million dollars’ stresses on how big the plan was. A similar quantification added to your achievements will undoubtedly fetch you the job. Another instance is saying that you trained employees. However, quantifying that you taught fifteen employees would undoubtedly capture the attention of any hiring manager. The following two resume summary examples indicate the difference quantifying achievements brings about:

Example 1:

An emphatic Certified Nursing Assistant with eight years of experience in giving in-home patient care. I have maintained continuously good patient reviews more than ninety-seven percent positive. Driving record is a hundred percent clean. I have tallied twenty-five plus accolades for preparing nutritious meals.

Example 2:

An experienced Certified Nursing Assistant, has worked since 2009, for private patients as well as nursing homes. My clients adore me. I am quite emphatic and also a good cook.

A comparison between example one and example two shows the fundamental difference in quantified statements and those which are not quantified. The second is not bad, but its prospects of capturing the gaze of a hiring manager are quite low as compared to the first.

Thus, the advantages of adding measurements to resume summary statements include:

  • Capturing the attention of the hiring manager and giving him a brief sense of what you have done professionally so far.
  • It acts as proof to your claims proving that they are not far-fetched.
  • The quantification sets you well above the rest of the pack who never bothered to elaborate on their achievements and accomplishments.
  • When measurements are quantified, the hiring manager will be prospective that you are in a suitable position to achieve the same results in his firm if granted the job opportunity.