Tips For Writing A Resume After Leaving The Military

Writing a resume with primarily military experience can be tricky. However, crafted with skill, a military resume can land you a dream job.

Many people who leave the military enter civilian life with very marketable skills. However, after a little job-hunting, they find themselves being pigeon-holed into law enforcement jobs, or other professions stereotyped as "for the military."

The reason that recently discharged individuals have a hard time getting a job they want comes down to how they market themselves on paper. As with so many other things, how you present yourself on your resume is crucial to getting the job. Creating a resume with mostly military experience should be crafted in such a way as to let a potential employer know that you were more than just "in the military."


One of the first things that should be done to organize the resume is to break down every individual position you held while in the military. For instance, you may have been a computer operate for three years at an overseas base. If so, you should make a list of the duties you performed in that role, as well as the skills that you acquired. You should also have the exact dates that you held the position.

Next, it is important to make an overall list of skills that you acquired from your general military experience. You probably gained invaluable leadership experience. You may have also learned another language from your travels. All of this should be noted so that you will have it ready when you begin to write the resume.

It is important to remember that you may not think that some of these things are that important in the civilian world, but they can be very important. As with our example of learning a foreign language: this is a much sought after skill by many companies because of our multinational economic climate. Letting a potential employer know that you have skills with more than one language may quite possibly send your resume to the top of the pile.

Finally, you should also have a list of awards or other accomplishments that you received while in the military. If you were responsible for overhauling a department or unit, then make a note of that. Those accomplishments that were measured in terms of numbers""such as dollars & cents or people""are something that potential employers look at.

Writing the Resume

When you have all of your information together, then it is time to actually write the resume. Many resumes today begin with a short biographical paragraph followed by a paragraph about the position you are seeking. This section of the resume serves to humanize you to prospective employers. Make sure you do not come off as being arrogant. Simply state where you are coming from and where you would like to go.

Next comes the employment and experience section. If the military is your most recent employment, then list that as a header in the employment section of your resume along with your rank, when you entered the service, and when you left the service.

Then, you should begin with the most recent position you held in the military. List the duties of that position, along with your accomplishments. Also list the beginning and end dates of the job. After that, list the next most recent assignment, along with duties, accomplishments, etc.

In a separate section of your resume, you should list the skills that you have, such as computer skills, language skills, etc. Try to be specific without appearing to exaggerate your abilities or lie about what you know. If you have computer networking skills, list exactly what operating systems and equipment you have worked with. And of course, you should also list your education. List where you went to college""if you did""along with your major, minor, and GPA.

One Last Step

Once you have the resume written, make sure that you read over it several times to check for misspelled words and grammatical errors. In addition, it is a good idea to have someone else read it. That person can tell you how the resume appears and sounds to someone else. They might be able to suggest where slight changes should be made.

Finally, send out the resume knowing that you are ready to show the world that you served your country proudly and that you gained a wealth of knowledge and experience from your service!

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