Resume writing tips

Resume Objectives


Before you go off frantically searching all over the internet trying to find samples of resume objectives, consider very carefully whether you need one!
Personally, I must confess that I (generally) hate them - this is simply because 99% of objectives are dead boring, soppy and do not tell me anything about the candidate I am trying to employ.

If you decide to use a resume objective statement it should be specific and should focus on what you can offer the prospective company - not what you are hoping to gain from employment.

Many sample resume objectives reads something like, "An entry level position where I can utilize my strengths and with room for advancement." What is wrong with this sample?

  • Firstly, it says absolutely nothing about the candidate.

  • Secondly, the employer could probably care less that you are seeking a position with room for advancement? Why? Because so is everyone else!

  • Remember the employer wants to know what you can do for that company in a specific position.

Resume objectives are probably most useful for new graduates, those who are changing careers, and/or those who have little or no work history. This group (except possibly career changers) do not yet have the experience behind them to create a profile or summary of qualifications that a more seasoned candidate can put forward.

When writing your objective, ensure that it is unique to your situation and the specific qualifications that you can bring to the position.

Avoid using generic objectives that are "plugged into" resume templates. Hiring managers are wary of overused objectives, and you don't want to use the same objective that everyone else is using and that the hiring manager has seen more times than he/she cares to remember - this will definitely NOT help you to stand out from the crowd.

If you choose to use an objective, pay careful attention to what follows - later on I will provide you with some good sample resume objectives...

Writing Your Own

A resume objective statement should be a short section at the top of your resume under name and address etc.

Headings for a resume objective can be one of the following

  • Objective

  • Career objective

  • Professional objective

  • Career goals

Requirements of a resume objective statement

  • First of all keep in mind that one isn't required! Consider whether you wish to include this at all. It seems to be rather popular (especially amongst certain professional resume writers) but the latest trend is to move away from this rather outdated practice.

  • 1-3 lines of text maximum.

  • It should NOT be all about you. The objective should be all about what you can offer and possibly what you require from the job.

  • Can be phrases and not complete sentences.

  • Can be bullet points

Purpose of a resume objective statement

  • To emphasize your wants/requirements

  • To show your career goals and what position(s) you're looking for.

When you consider the purpose of resume objectives it becomes clear why their usefulness is limited - If you do not want what the job offers you should not apply and secondly you should only apply for jobs that meet your career goals.


Some useful Tips

  • You should tailor it to the organization and/or position you're applying for - it is pointless having an objective of management responsibility if the position on offer doesn't have it - it will only put the recruiter off!

  • Refer to a position by the term used in the job posting.

  • Try to pick up and insert some words/phrases from the job posting (but not so many that it becomes too obvious!).

  • Be as specific as possible, general and vague objectives are meaningless.

  • An employer reading the objective will be asking themselves "What's in this resume for me/us?" so keep this in mind when writing.

  • Here are some sample resume objectives you can tailor to meet your needs.