Crafting Your Resume For A Career Change

Have you ever realized that your job or career path isn’t what you thought or wanted it to be? Maybe after thinking it through you’ve decided to take the leap and make a career change. Although this could be a trying time, there are some things you can do to best prepare yourself for the change.

If you’ve been in the workforce for a while, chances are your resume needs updating. Whether you’re targeting a new job or a new industry all together, a resume is a critical part of the application process. When you’ve decided that you need a change in industry, even to one in which you don’t have experience, the skills you have obtained to this point have not been for nothing. Crafting your resume the right way will show that you have what it takes to succeed in your new career.

In an article for The Motley Fool, Maurie Backman provides three tips when changing careers. She has experienced this change first hand, as she has gone from being a hedge fund associate to toy designer to marketer and now, a personal finance writer. The tips are as follows:

Highlight Your Most Transferable Skills

Regardless of your job title, company, and industry, there are certain skills that you have likely developed that help you succeed. For example, your time management and effectiveness to get tasks done, communication skills and organization. These are skills that are needed in every workplace. By incorporating these skills into your resume bullet points, employers can recognize that they are skills that a successful individual in their company must have, thus giving you a better chance of getting hired.

Craft An Opening Statement Geared Toward The Profession You’re Interested In

This tip has to do with whether or not you are in the party that includes an opening statement, or statement of purpose, on your resume. If yes, the statement should set the tone for the person reading it and making hiring decisions. Use this section as a time to promote yourself and your transferable skills. As is said in writing, “show, not tell.” You can tell the person reading your resume that you have these skills, but instead, show them by using examples from your previous experience.

Create a Functional Resume, Not A Chronological One

Since you had enough experience to create a resume and search for a job, we’ve been told to put your previous experience in chronological order, which still rings true. However, if you’re trying to switch careers all together, Backman recommends creating a “functional resume.” This is a type of resume that focuses on your skills and experience, rather than just being a rundown of all the work experience you’ve had. In this resume, you can show the hiring manager why the experience you have gained in previous roles sets you up for success in this potential new role and also how your skills are readily transferable to this new career.

Although this can be a trying time in your career, it is better to realize that you want to make a change than progressing along and always wondering “what if?” Since the average worker has 10 jobs by the age of 40, if you’ve found yourself thinking about making a change, you’re definitely not alone. Thanks to the multitude of resources available, including these resume tips, the career change can be easier. If you need some motivation, check out these former professional athletes who have made the change after their playing careers.

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