The perfect job popped up today. It checks all the boxes, and you think it would be the perfect fit. The only challenge is that there’s probably 500 other people also thinking it’s a dream job.
So, how do you get past the applicant tracking system (ATS) and catch the recruiter’s attention? One of the best ways is to create an outstanding resume objective.
What Is a Resume Objective?
A resume objective is a short blurb (think two to three sentences) at the top of a resume that helps you communicate why you’re the best candidate for the position. This is most likely the first thing that a recruiter will read. Like the introduction to a book, your resume objective needs to hook your reader and make them want to read more.
It is essential that you help recruiters understand what you’re bringing to the position.
When Is a Resume Objective Essential?
Most career coaches agree that a resume objective is a must-have for someone changing careers or seeking their first position after graduating. A resume objective creates an immediate impact when you rely on college courses or transferable skills to explain your qualifications.
How Do You Create a Resume Objective?
Realistically, recruiters only look at your resume for about seven seconds before deciding if it will go in the “pass” pile. Grab their attention with action words and career goals that match job duties. We’ve got some tips to keep in mind.
Your summary should include what you’re bringing to the role, including your skills relevant to the position. When it’s not a traditional career path, you might need to spell those out a bit for the recruiter.
In practice, it might look like this:
“Experienced store manager with 10+ years of recruiting and hiring expertise looking to leverage my skills to support XYZ Inc. in the HR field. Strong business communication and organizational skills ensuring timely and efficient recruiting cycles.”
Keep Your Objective Concise
This isn’t the place for flowery language or industry jargon. Create a strong objective with simple and to-the-point words targeted at busy recruiters. Trying to embellish your skills, or sound more experienced, often comes across as arrogant or misleading.
Utilize Job Posting Keywords
Rather than simply stating that you’re seeking a generic role, find keywords in the job posting and target those. For example, if you’re responding to a posting for a product manager with data-driven analytics and communication skills, your response might look like this:
“Results-driven content director with 5+ years of experience managing editorial calendars and email marketing campaigns with a remarkable history of delivering quality targeted campaigns. Seeking to leverage data analytics skills as an SEO project manager at ABC Inc.”
Include Relevant Skills
We focus a lot on tailoring your resume to each position. The resume objective is a vital place to tailor your skills to each role. If you’re applying for an administrative role, your experience getting certified as a substitute teacher might not be a great fit.
Unless there’s a prominent link to the desired skill set, leave it out, regardless of how proud you are. Likewise, this isn’t the place to brag about your last company. For example, it shouldn’t look like this:
“Store manager for ABC, the largest retailer with multiple customer service awards…”
Your target is awareness of the challenges you faced in that role with a high-performing company. Ultimately, you’ve advertised that the company is excellent and left yourself out. Rephrase to focus on your accomplishments:
“Experienced and detail-oriented team member seeking to leverage my inventory skills as the warehouse manager for XYZ Inc. Outstanding leadership and organizational skills from my time as a store manager for ABC Company.”
More Resume Objective Examples
“Recent graduate with a BS in communications seeking to leverage my professional communication skills as an account representative at XYZ Inc. Strong project management and customer service skills, having worked as a supervisor for ABC Company for 4 years.”
“Experienced administrative assistant looking to move into the executive assistant role for XYZ Inc. Strong organizational skills managing the calendar and daily communications for ABC Auto for 5+ years.”
“Energetic speech therapist seeking support role with XYZ School District. Experience engaging elementary-aged children and communicating development plans. Passionate about creating connections and helping to make a lifetime impact.”
Crafting an Effective Resume Objective
To sum it up, your resume objective should be a statement that will grab the recruiter’s attention and quickly summarize your skills. To ensure it’s effective, try to keep it concise—under two to three sentences in length. Also, it’s essential to include keywords from the job posting in order for recruiters to understand how your skills relate to the role.
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