Resume Writing Best Practices For Engineering Professionals
Resume writing is an art form unto itself; your resume reflects not only your educational background, experience and skills, it’s also a reflection of you as a professional and the first impression you make on a potential employer. Engineering is a specialized field, so you want your resume to be specially tailored, not generic.
Hiring managers and recruiters are overwhelmed with resumes for each job that they have available; therefore, you want to make your resume stand out and capture their attention immediately.
Rather than starting your resume with a statement of your objectives, a qualification summary could benefit you more, unless you’re moving toward a new career path. The reason for this is that sometimes the objectives you list won’t exactly match the job or certain elements of the job, which can dissuade a hiring manager from reading on. Instead, grab the hiring manager’s or recruiter’s attention immediately by showing your strongest qualifications, emphasizing those that match the job you’re applying for.
Replace weighty paragraphs with bullet points that include key accomplishments along with the positive results each achieved, making sure each one is clear and to the point. For example, while it’s great to say that you invented a device that saves homeowners 16 percent annually on energy usage, it’s even better to add that the device increased your company’s sales revenues by 20 percent. For each achievement, show the gains or improvements that resulted from the project.
Engineers, especially those with years of experience, typically have been involved with numerous projects. While you don’t want to overwhelm hiring managers with every single project you’ve worked on, you do want to call attention to those of importance. If that list is too long for the body of the resume, add a project page to the end of your resume. There you can list additional projects that would be of interest to the hiring manager. Custom tailor the project page (and the resume itself, if necessary) to highlight particular projects best suited to specific companies or jobs you’re applying for.
Make sure the project descriptions on your resume demonstrate your skills and expertise, don’t assume recruiters or hiring managers know what skills were needed to complete each project. While the duties for each job you’ve had are important, they should not be confused with skills and accomplishments – these are two different things. The idea is to let your skills and accomplishments illustrate how you successfully met and possibly surpassed the goals of each job or project.
Accuracy in grammar, spelling and punctuation is extremely important on a resume. This cannot be stressed too strongly. Precision is important in engineering, and you want your resume to reflect that quality in yourself. Triple-check for errors, taking breaks between your proofreading to come back and look at it with a fresh eye. It helps even more to have others review your resume once you think it’s ready to go – they can sometimes find errors you’ve overlooked or spot areas that need either more clarification or that can be cut down.
If you feel uncertain about the strength of your resume or would like some help from professionals who are highly experienced in constructing engineering resumes custom tailored to all levels and industry niches, contact Webuild Resumes.
Michael DeSafey is a leading executive recruiter for professionals in the construction, engineering and environmental industries. He is currently the President of Webuild Staffing www.webuildstaffing.com . To learn more about Michael or to follow his Blog please visit www.michaeldesafey.com