Resume Objective Statements

Summary: Some job hunters use their resume objective just to say what job they are looking for. But there is so much more it can achieve! Use the objective to tell the employer why you are the right person for the position.

When writing a resume objective, many job-seekers waste the opportunity to get the most benefit from this valuable resume ‘real estate’.

Here’s the problem: because they are so focussed on their own needs, some candidates use the objective summary section merely to tell the reader what job they want to find.

The issue is that this approach misses out on the chance to powerfully tell the reader why the applicant is good for the position. You can certainly use the objective to state briefly what your job target is — and some employers like to see that degree of clear focus on a resume. But don’t forget the other techniques you can employ.

Here’s a useful exercise to help you write a resume objective statement that will make your reader sit up and take notice:

Put yourself in the reader’s shoes! Imagine what it must be like to have to sift through dozens (or even hundreds) of resumes to get down to an interview shortlist.

Faced with this challenge, the person screening applications may well have to quickly scan each resume and cover letter. That means you only have a few seconds of their attention to put your case across.

This is why the objective statement is such a powerful tool. It’s well worth spending the time to write the best objective you can. Here’s why:

  • the objective or profile appears near the top of the resume
  • it offers you the chance to tell the reader exactly how you can benefit the company you want to work for
  • it’s a place to summarize key features of your background and skills
  • it should be quick and easy to read

When you look through resume samples, try to assess how well the objective does the job of capturing your attention. Would you be persuaded to read past the first few lines?

After the objective summary has done its job, your resume should contain powerful and assertive statements about your work history, experience, education, relevant affiliations, etc. This is your opportunity to flesh out some of the statements you summarized earlier.

You’ll also need to supply details of your accomplishments, skills and characteristics and back them up with useful evidence where you can.

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