The first step in a successful job hunt is creating a resume that accurately describes your skills, education, and professional experience. Your resume is a marketing tool that "sells" your value to a company and, along with your cover letter, helps you land an interview. The best objective for a resume aligns with both the job description and your professional experience.
Let's take a look at some examples of resume objectives (also referred to as a career objective or focus statement). Hopefully, one or two will serve as a springboard for your own resume.
In this context of a resume, an objective is two-fold.
- It clarifies your goals regarding the type of employment you're seeking.
- It demonstrates how your skills are a good fit for the company.
Keep your resume objective to one or two sentences. The best spot for your resume objective is just below your name and contact information.
Note that you don't have to highlight the section with a heading that says "Objective" or "Focus Statement."
While resume objectives aren't required, they're helpful if you're a recent college graduate or you're changing careers. Consider using an objective when a summary of your work experience and skills doesn't adequately reflect the type of position you're seeking.
Here's a great example:
Communications graduate with proven editing, writing, and public relations skills. Seeking a position as a Marketing Coordinator to leverage my digital marketing skills in support of advertising and marketing campaigns.
This is a good resume objective because it highlights what the candidate can do for the company. Don't fall into the trap of making it about yourself. Make it about what you can do for the company.
As such, you'll want to avoid something like this:
Looking for a role as a Marketing Coordinator where I can apply my public relations skills. I possess digital marketing skills and want to work in a fast-paced, engaging environment.
This person has some of the skills companies will be looking for. However, this objective was positioned as "what I want" rather than "what I can do for you." Basically, make sure there's no "me" or "I" in your objective.
With that in mind, let's move on to a few more examples of effective resume objectives for a variety of job types. Although objective statements should always be customized to reflect your own unique skills and goals, let's see if these general resume objective examples can be used as a starting point for your resume.
- Administrative Assistant: Dedicated administrative professional with excellent customer service skills and extensive knowledge of bookkeeping procedures. Looking to apply my experience in the travel industry to focus on sales, customer care, and office management.
- App Developer: Results-driven app developer seeks opportunity to create innovative app development strategies that increase brand awareness, drive traffic, and monetize digital real estate.
- Caterer: Professional dietician and caterer with four years in the foodservice industry. Seeking to utilize strong interpersonal skills and culinary knowledge to create a memorable dining experience for clients.
- Content Coordinator: Strong communicator with two years' experience writing and editing copy for diverse audiences. Looking to utilize knowledge to drive audience engagement in the nonprofit space.
- Customer Service Representative: Bilingual English/Spanish customer service representative seeking position utilizing conflict resolution skills via phone, email, mail, or social media contact.
- Digital Strategist: SEO and social media expert interested in a position as a digital strategist with a growing company. Looking to apply digital marketing expertise to increase site traffic and overall brand awareness.
- Driver: Dependable driver with a clean DMV record and a commercial driver's license. Seeking a position with a leading courier company that will lead to a long-term career relationship.
- Engineering Technician: Deadline-focused engineering technician with two years of experience in assessing risks and identifying performance issues in the development of new products. Interested in opportunities focused on electronics research and development.
- Financial Administrator: Recent graduate with coursework and internship experience in investment banking. Looking to apply financial modeling and valuation to a bustling accounting department.
- HR Manager (career change): Dynamic, take-charge retail store manager with seven years of experience managing 100+ employees seeks opportunity to apply skills in human resources and payroll management.
- Intern: Graduate student seeking internship as a research assistant specializing in foreign policy. Coursework has included extensive exploration of free markets and limited government.
- Medical Assistant: Medical assistant with four years of experience supporting physicians and registered nurses. Looking to apply medical knowledge in a long-term care facility.
- Sales Representative: Action-oriented sales representative seeking an opportunity to utilize skills in initiating and developing strategic relationships with government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and industry.
- Server: Animated and outgoing server with excellent multi-tasking and time-management skills seeking opportunity to contribute to memorable dining experiences for restaurant customers.
- Site Manager: Dynamic team leader adept at using energy, enthusiasm, and humor as motivational tools interested in opportunity as construction site manager.
- Teacher: Enthusiastic elementary school teacher committed to developing inquisitive lifelong learners. Seeking opportunity to create a positive environment that encourages student exploration and promotes self-esteem.
When writing your resume objective, keep the following tips in mind:
- Be clear about your goals. A resume objective that could apply to anyone or any type of job isn't helpful. The objective "Hardworking recent graduate seeks opportunity to use education to excel in building the success of the company" is ineffective because it offers no details about why you're interested in a particular position or what makes you suited to the job.
- Put the employer's needs first. It may sound harsh, but a prospective employer doesn't care how getting the job will help you advance your career. A statement like "I want to be part of the success in an environment of growth and excellence" is a poor choice for your objective because it only tells what you want and doesn't show what you have to offer an employer.
- Highlight your strengths. Since the objective is at the top of your resume, it's essentially the first thing the reader sees. Use this space to highlight why you are a qualified candidate. Try to incorporate keywords from the position description into your objective.
Not too bad, right? Keep it short and sweet, and keep the focus on the company. Don't forget, if you're a recent grad, you can visit the Career Services office at your college. They're there to help you refine your resume and begin your job search. If your resume gets you to the next stage, take a look at these smart questions to ask in an interview. Like your resume, they'll help you stand tall above the crowd.