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Should I include a career summary on my résumé?

Career Exploration The Hiring Process The Local Job Market

Question:  Is it important to have a career summary on my résumé? Answer: Résumé writers argue about this all the time. Here’s one vote for “yes.” A career summary can also be called a professional profile, highlights of qualifications, or any of several other titles. It gathers up all your best stuff (that is, what the employer will think is your best stuff) in a neat little package near the top of your résumé. It makes it easy for the employer to find the information he wants, as quickly as possible. It will not surprise you to know that employers appreciate your making their lives easier. People who read résumés tend to read a lot of résumés, especially in an economy like this one. They often have very arbitrary methods of deciding which ones to read thoroughly, and which ones to glance at on the way to the wastebasket. One human resources professional says he went through a very tall pile of résumés and decided to read only every third one. Yes, he missed a number of good people, but the ones he had left were very good candidates too, so he chose among those. Anything you do to make it easier to find the most important information helps the employer, and makes it more likely that he will call you for an interview. Having a career summary just below your contact information and objective accomplishes that goal. You may still need to tweak it for each new job you apply for, depending on what the employer of the moment is looking for. This can be a nuisance, but not nearly as much of a nuisance as continuing to be unemployed. �