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Summary of Qualifications

How do you make your summary of qualifications in your resume stand out? Think back to the 10 second resume rule, which states that your resume only has 10 seconds to capture the employer’s attention and make the cut for further review or be tossed to the trash.

The summary of qualifications section follows after the appropriate resume headline and is often used in place of an objective statement. This section provides a great marketing tool for selling yourself to the employer by describing why you are the perfect candidate for the job. Use this section to indicate the highlights of your professional or academic career, including your key achievements and skills. You can choose to write the summary of qualifications in a paragraph form or list out about four to five bullets.

What to include in The Summary of Qualifications:

  • Years of experience and areas of expertise within your field
  • Accomplishments in your professional or academic career
  • Awards, certifications or professional training you have received
  • Quantifiable skills, such as sales figures you have helped to generate
  • Soft skills that are difficult to quantify, such as communication skills, quick learner

Since the summary of qualifications is the first section of your resume, it should be strong and convincing. Think of it as an “elevator pitch.” If you met an employer who you wanted to work for in the elevator, what would you say in the brief time that you are in the elevator to convince that person to hire you? What are the most important things you want the employer to know about yourself that will make that person remember you after you leave?

This section does require some thought and revisions until it is compelling and concise with the targeted information. Although it is not easy, take the time to write your qualification summary well so that employers will want to read the rest of your resume!