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What To Write In The Skills Section Of Your Resume

Keep Your Resume Short And Direct

Writing Your Resume Skills Section: Do’s and Don’ts

The No. 1 rule of writing a resume is to keep it short and to the point. The general rule is no more than one page unless you have a very good reason for it to be longer, like an extensive career or many highly applicable work experiences.

Your resume should target the specific job you are applying for. Sending the same resume off to every job you apply for will be a detriment.

“Don’t write a generic resume that could work for any job,” said Wes Lybrand, teacher and former assistant director at the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Career and Professional Development Services. Be sure to prioritize your skills and qualifications for each job you try to land. Your resume “should be focused, clear and concise.”

An easy way to keep your resume trim is to only include recent, relevant experience. While that yearlong first or second job might have taught you a lot about the field, it’s not always necessary to include every detail from your entire career history.

“If an experience noted on your resume is from prior to 2000, consider striking it,” said Jane Trnka, executive director of the Career Development Center at Rollins College’s Crummer Graduate School of Business. “The skills listed are probably not the most relevant to the work you are currently doing or plan to do in the future.”

What To Include In Your Resume Skills Section

The skills section is a crucial component of your resume and can play a significant role in your chances of interesting a potential employer. This section is where you list the skills that are most relevant to the job you’re applying for. While there are many skills you should include in your resume, there are also some that can be left out.

Best Hard Skills To Put On A Resume In 2021

LIke we said earlier on, the job landscape is evolving and we dont mean your typical slow pace, Darwin type of evolution. Nope. This is a fast computer age evolution and youre going to have to put in some effort and come up with some great resume ideas for skills if you dont want to be left in the dust.

This is especially true for careers that depend heavily on hard-skills, such as those in the tech, industrial and construction industry. So, just like bringing the right tool for the job, its important to bring the right set of hard-skills.

With that said, these 10 hard-skills are in huge demand in 2021:

  • Cybersecurity
  • Web development
  • Python
  • Now, we dont mean for you to just go jotting down as many hard-skills as you can on your resume just because theyre in demand. No, unique skills for a resume or any additional skill for a resume should only be added if you can at least perform the skills with some proficiency.

    Another good way to decide what skill to add on your skill summary is by asking yourself this question, Would I be able to answer a hiring managers in depth questions about such skill?. If not, then scrap it from your resume and cover letter.

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    What Skills Should I Put In My Cv

    The skills in your CV should include skills from the adverts that interest you.

    Look at this example:

    “We’re looking for a conscientious self-starter, proficient in Microsoft Office and Adobe Photoshop, who works well with others and can learn new computer systems easily.”

    The key words are:

    • proficient in Microsoft Office and Adobe Photoshop
    • teamwork
    • willingness to learn.

    Show how you used skills

    For each skill on your CV, include an example that shows how you used or developed it.

    You could write:

    I collected and managed money from my schools 40 Hour Famine fundraiser.

    Self-starter Ran a coffee kiosk. Managed and counted the till takings, opened and closed kiosk.

    Teamwork Worked with the school trustees to make decisions about school issues. I played netball on a school team for four years and was captain in Year 13.

    Willingness to learn I updated my Microsoft skills through online courses.

    Make your experience stand out

    Employers may get many job applications from people who have, for example, ‘good communications skills’ or who are ‘flexible’.

    You could write:

    Good communication skills Can follow instructions and ask questions when I need to. I’m confident in front of an audience. I was a member of my schools debating team, took part in school drama productions, and won a regional speech competition.

    Flexibility I usually work after school, but I’ve taken on later shifts to cover staff shortages.

    List technical skills

    For example, write:

    Yes You Do Need A Summary Up Top

    Resume Skills Section: How to List Skills on Your Resume

    The first 15-20 words of your resume are critically important because thats how long you usually have a hiring managers attention, says Lees. Start with a brief summary of your expertise. Youll have the opportunity to expand on your experience further down in your resume and in your cover letter. For now, keep it short. Its a very rich, very brief elevator pitch, that says who you are, why youre qualified for the job, and why youre the right person to hire, says Heifetz. You need to make it exquisitely clear in the summary that you have what it takes to get the job done. It should consist of a descriptor or job title like, Information security specialist who It doesnt matter if this is the exact job title youve held before or not, says Lees. It should match what theyre looking for. Here are two examples:

    Healthcare executive with over 25 years of experience leading providers of superior patient care.

    Strategy and business development executive with substantial experience designing, leading, and implementing a broad range of corporate growth and realignment initiatives.

    And be sure to avoid clichés like highly motivated professional. Using platitudes in your summary or anywhere else in the document is basically like saying, Im not more valuable than anyone else, explains Lees. They are meaningless, obvious, and boring to read.

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    How Do I Figure Out The Right Combination Of Skills To Include On My Resume For A Particular Job Application

    Check the answer key! That is, print out the job description of the role youre interested in and take a highlighter to it , marking any skills you see listed that you have. Then, make sure these skills are listed on your resume. For example, heres a job description with some of the key skills bolded:

    Email Marketing Manager

    • Manage email marketing strategy and calendar
    • Monitor, analyze, and report on campaign performance
    • Improve campaign success throughconversion optimization, A/B testing, segmentation,and more
    • Collaborate with the design and editorial teams to maintain consistent brand and voice across platforms
    • Work cross-functionally with sales, product, product marketing, and data teams


    • 3+ years in email marketing
    • Experience withcontent management systems and email service providers such as MailChimp or Constant Contact
    • Experience withGoogle Analytics, HTML, CSS, Photoshop, Microsoft Excel, and SEOa plus
    • Excellent oral and written communication skills
    • Team player with strong interpersonal, relationship-building, and stakeholder management skills
    • Excellent problem solving and time management skills

    And heres a list of skills you might include in your skills section if you were applying to the job:

    Conversion optimization, A/B testing, segmentation, MailChimp, Constant Contact, Google Analytics, HTML, CSS, Photoshop, Microsoft Excel, SEO

    Group Skills By Category

    Breaking your skills down into discrete categories can make an otherwise long list easier to read and digest. If you have skills in different areas that arent obviously related but are both relevant to the position for example, programming and project management, or sales and data analysis this is a good way to group them.

    Grouping skills by category can also be useful if you have skills in a number of related but separate areas, like design, modeling, and programming. Breaking down your proficiencies by the specific software or programming language is a lot more compelling than simply listing modeling and design skills.

    If your skills are all in the same area, you can still group them in other ways. Technical, software, and programming skills can be grouped according to their function like in this example. This keeps your skills together so they can be seen at a glance but avoids having a single list thats too long to easily digest.

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    Ways To Highlight Skills On Your Resume

    Letâs go over three places on your resume to highlight your skills and strengths:

    1. Dedicated skills section

    Use the skills section on your resume to discuss your technical skillsand workplace skills. It helps to review a job description, noting the required and recommended skills, so you can list those first . For example, if you have experience working in several different content management systems , but a job specifically uses one platform, list that platform first before detailing the others.

    Break up your skills section into bullet points that list out your various skills or group your skills by major job function .


    • Proficient in C++ and Python

    • Experience with Django, Laravel, and Meteor

    • Familiar with Javascript, Kubernetes, Docker

    • Knowledge of network security protocols

    • Problem solving, teamwork, attention to detail

    Key skills

    • Servers: NGINX and Apache

    2. Resume summary or resume objective

    Not every resume needs a summary or objective, but they can be useful sections to include when youâre just beginning your career or when youâre looking to pivot to something new. In either case, use that space to mention your workplace and interpersonal skills, including the attributes you think most align with a job description. In the resume summary below, the bolded words are key skills that can suggest your readiness to start a new role.

    3. Previous experience

    Pharmacy technician, XYZ Pharmacy

    Simple Resume Writing Tips To Help You Stand Out


    Your resume is the most important document you’ll submit in your job search. It’s your front-line fighter, so to speak, as it’s your first opportunity to present yourself to a potential employer.

    A strong resume can help you stand out from the crowd, but a weak resume can remove you from the running, so you want to do all you can to make sure your resume is the best it can be.

    It can be difficult to succinctly present all of your experiences and qualifications, but there are many ways to spruce up your resume without going overboard. To help you land an interview, Business News Daily rounded up some of the experts’ best resume writing tips.

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    Ways To Write A Resume Skills Section

    Whether youre trying to catch a recruiters eye or rise to the top of an applicant tracking systems rankings, seeding your resume with relevant resume keywords should be a top priority. One simple way to do this is through a resume skills section.

    A designated skills list is an optional resume section and not part of a traditional resume format. Find a good hybrid/combination or functional resume template if you want a skills section on your resume.

    Here are four ways to show off what you can do with a resume skills section:

    1. Create a simple bullet list resume skills section

    The most straight-forward way is to make a list immediately following your contact information and summary statement. For example, a Customer Success Managers bullet points might look like this:

    • Account Management
    • On-boarding
    • Customer Engagement

    Hitting all the top job requirements with your skills list will make a recruiters ears perk up. It will also help you rank highly for a keyword search within an applicant tracking system. Its an attention-getter, but dont stop there. Just because you list these job skills on your resume doesnt mean a corporate recruiter will believe you.

    If you use this type of resume skills section, be sure to add context for every skill elsewhere in your work experience. If a recruiter is excited by Product Adoption in your skills section, the first thing theyll do is skim your work experience to figure out when, how, and how much you used that skill.

    Be Proud Of Your Past Accomplishments

    Companies want confident employees who love their work. They know these are the people who tend to perform better, serve as stronger team members and have greater potential to grow along with the business.

    Draw attention to specific examples of projects youve worked on that make you an ideal candidate, and dont hesitate to brag a little about your most pertinent achievements. Consider adding a sentence or two or even a bullet list, as long as youre not duplicating your resume of key achievements backed up with quantitative data. Did you increase revenue by identifying tax savings worth $50,000 a year, win six design awards, quadruple the companys social media following? Heres the place to mention it.

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    How To Choose Skills To Put On A Resume

    The skills section provides an overview of your top skills for human readers and also helps with keyword searching by applicant tracking systems. These tips explain how to figure out the right skills for a resume:

    1. Look at job ads. The best way to get started finding good skills to put on a resume is to search jobs on Monster and review several postings for your target job. Look at the job descriptions and write a list of frequently repeated skills.

    2. Next, identify your matching skills. Keep in mind you develop skills in everything from work experience to education, training, hobbies, extracurricular activities, volunteer work, and self-study. Once you know where your skills overlap with the jobs qualifications, incorporate these valuable keywords on your resume.

    3. Research your target employer. Another way to find keywords? Check out their website and social media posts, paying attention to the descriptive words they use to describe their company, brand, and employees. Use those words on your resume to indicate youd be a good cultural fit.

    Types Of Skills You Should Include On Your Resume

    How to List Skills on a Resume Skills Section [3 Easy Steps]

    When creating your skills section, it’s important to keep the skills you list as specific to the job you’re applying for as possible. You can list many skills on your resume, but it’s important to only include skills that you have or can prove that you have. Below is a list of four different types of skills you can include on your resume:

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    What Skills To Put On A Resume: List Of Good Examples To Include

    Check the best skills to put on a resume. Learn technical skills, hard skills & soft skills examples and breeze through the recruitment process.

    In a second, youll see a list of the most universal skills to put on a resume. And youll be tempted to just copy-paste it into yours. Dont. If you want your resume to land great interviews, your skills section has to fit the job opening like a glove AND differentiate you from the competition.

    Spend 5 more minutes reading this article and youll learn:

    • The most universal skills to put in a resume
    • The difference between hard and soft skills.
    • Why you must absolutely nail your resume skills to get hired.
    • How to detect what skills employers look for and how to list them on your resume.
    • What job skills to put on a resume to land an interview.

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    Skills You Don’t Possess

    Listing skills you don’t truly have on a resume is never a great idea because if you do get the job, you then have to prove that you do have them. Being dishonest could lead to you not getting the job or being terminated if you are unable to perform the tasks required for the position. Sometimes the interviewer asks about these skills, and you don’t want to start the employee-employer relationship by not telling the truth during your in-person interview. When in doubt, delete the skill from your resume.

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    Boost Your Skills In The Work Experience Section

    The work experience section of your resume should be achievement-oriented to showcase how you have used your skills to produce satisfactory results at your previous jobs. This section reinforces your experience and proves that you can use your skills in a real-life work situation.

    To create a great achievement-oriented work experience section, you can use the Problem, Action, Result method:

    • Problem: Identify an issue at your previous job.
    • Action: Show how you used a skill to resolve the problem.
    • Result: Highlight the positive result of your action.

    Once you have this drafted, you can then create a single achievement-oriented bullet point to highlight your chosen skill. You can also add numbers, percentages, or other bits of data to quantify your skills. For example, you could say that you implemented a new project management software that increased the efficiency of your team by 15%. This highlights your project management skills.

    Impress Employers With An Outstanding Skill Set On Your Resume

    How to Write a Skills Section for Your Resume in 2022 [Resume Examples Included]

    If you want great examples of resumes for different industries, then you can check out resume samples crafted by our expert resume writers. If you like what you see or are unsure about how to write a winning resume of your own, then contact us today! We can write you an outstanding resume that not only passes applicant tracking systems but also showcases your skills and talents to impress the hiring managers reading your resume.

    Paul Entwistle

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