Resume Skills Section Writing Tips

In Resume Writing Tips

Last Updated:

Resume Skills Section Writing Tips to Attract Your Target Employer

The skills section of resumes, which professional writers usually label as “areas of expertise” or “core competencies,” is where you can list the skills you gained through training or experience. This section allows the hiring manager to skim the top portion of your application paper and know your capabilities. Likewise, it helps you beat the “resume reading robots” or the Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) of employers, which is the first step to getting your resume into their hands.

Other titles for skills section:

  • Functional Strengths
  • Functional Skills with Experience
  • Summary of Relevant Experience
  • Technical Acumen
Best Location of Skills Section

On the word of resume experts, the location of skills section depends on the job, company, and industry an applicant is targeting. For a job that focuses on the technical knowledge, it’s wise to list the skills closer to the top of the resume, right below the qualifications profile/executive profile.

Look at the resume we created for an applicant seeking for a customer service manager job:

Since his target job needs a base set of skills, we put his technical skills to the upper part instead of putting them as additional skills at the bottom part.

Yet sometimes, some firms give utmost importance to experience. If that’s the case, put your experience at the upper part of your resume and your skills section further down, like this one:

Quick Tips for Writing the Skills Section
  • Tailor your skills towards your target job. Hiring managers prefer hopefuls with skills that match almost all their needs. Thus, the closer your skills to the job description are, the better your chances of securing an interview and being hired. Also, if you’re an expert in something that doesn’t directly relate to your target job, as long as it’s relevant, include it. For example, if you’re applying for a managerial position at a music shop, you can mention that you can play a musical instrument. This way, you can show that you’re knowledgeable about the industry.
  • Quantify them if possible. Replace the common adjectives with hard numbers.

For example:

Good: Excellent with foreign languages
Better: Fluent in English and French and proficient in German

Good: Expert typist
Better: 75WPM typist

Note: Don’t get hyper with the specifics; a few details will be enough.

  • Organize your bullets. Listing four to five bullet points is okay. But once you’ve listed more, keep them sensible. For example, keep your speaking and language skills with your speaking and language skills and your computer skills with your computer skills.

Don’t let them scatter like this:Preview

– Skilled graphic artist adept in Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Photoshop
– Trilingual – Fluent in English, Italian, and German
– Proficient with MS Word, PowerPoint, and Excel
– Confident and charismatic public speaker

Organize it, to be like this:

– Skilled graphic artist adept in Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Photoshop
– Proficient with MS Word, PowerPoint, and Excel
– Confident and charismatic public speaker
– Trilingual – Fluent in English, Italian, and German

Whatever style you use in writing your skills section, as long as your list is clear, relevant, and organized, you’re sure to impress the hiring manager. For more resume writing tips, you may read these articles:

Sources:
www.resumegenius.com
www.thebalance.com
www.theinterviewguys.com