No, we are not talking about a resume objective. Starting out your resume with what YOU want is a definite resume no-no. Remember the 8 second rule? You only have 8 seconds before your resume is deleted. The best resume executive summary highlights your experiences as they pertain to the job you are applying for and does it in a way that is imperative and interesting.
Why You Need a Resume Executive Summary
The best summaries clearly and quickly articulate your value. It is your written elevator pitch. It should make you stand out from the crowd and emphasize your strengths and transferable skills. Make sure you are targeting the specific job you are applying for in aligning your background and skills with what this employer is stating they need. The best resume executive summary will get you to the next step in the interview process and keep you out of email trash.
How to Brainstorm Your Summary
Quantify your achievements with tangible metrics, if possible. Metrics boost the credibility of your achievement and provide context. JobScan.com says the best way to determine which achievements to include is to ask yourself these questions: If I could tell a hiring panel just three things about myself, what would they be? What career achievements am I most proud of? What are my areas of expertise? What would I like to achieve next? What unique skills, traits or experiences do I bring to the table?
“Highly motivated marketer with strong problem-solving skills, tireless work ethic and detail-oriented mindset,” offers platitudes that every candidate thinks they have. What is unique to you? If every candidate could say the same thing, don’t use it.
Oystir.com recommends the following sentence structure:
- Bullet 1: Sell yourself in the first sentence. Highlight a skillset and specialization that matches the job description.
- Bullet 2-3: Emphasize the most relevant skills tailored to the job description and/or detail particularly relevant experieces.
- Bullet 4-5: Describe the soft skills you have that are relevant to the job. These should show who you are as a person and could convey other impressive aspects of your candidacy.
Sample Sales Resume Executive Summary
Over 20 years in pharmaceutical sales in multiple therapeutic areas including hematology, oncology and cardiology, with experience in hospital and buy and bill. Strategically involved in new product launches and a tactician in sustaining sales growth of mature brands by developing creative marketing and sales techniques. Have exceeded sales quotas in each of the last 20 years by at least 10%. An essential contributor providing creative business solutions to complex problems in diverse business fields.
Put the summary near the top of your resume, right below your name and contact information. Bold or highlight the text to make it more noticeable. Use keywords in case the internal applicant tracking system only picks up resumes based on keywords. Always revise to match the job you are applying for. Have fresh eyes review it for clarity, conciseness and spelling and grammatical errors.