Writing a resumé for changing careers

How can you make sure your application gets noticed when you change careers? Impress them with your relevant experience by writing a skill-based resumé!

After ten years on the floor as a restaurant manager, you’re looking for a change of pace. Interested in showbiz? The good news is you aren’t starting from scratch! The skills you developed during your first career are transferable to your new job as a production coordinator with the circus or television network. You’ve just got to make sure those skills get recognized.

“Write your resumé according to your skills,” suggests Mélanie Paquet, career counsellor and coach at Brisson Legris, Unveiling Potentials, a company that helps workers make the most of their abilities. The first thing you should include is a section that summarizes the skills, qualities, aptitudes and education you have that are relevant the job.”

Next comes the skills section. “This is where you describe your past responsibilities that match the description of the job you are applying for. As a manager, you have overseen personnel, created work schedules and dealt with administrative tasks. This demonstrates your ability to work under pressure, manage a budget and coordinate a team.”

By organizing your resumé this way, the employer will immediately see what makes you a good candidate. He or she will notice your work experience and training, which otherwise might have seemed irrelevant on their own.

Guaranteeing a successful switch
Look for training programs that offer internships in companies. This way you’re sure to have experience to put on your resumé.
Get involved in your new field while you are studying. Do some volunteering or find a part-time job. This will give you something to put on your resumé that you can be proud of.
Write a strong cover letter. Emphasize your qualities that match the company’s needs. Look over your work experience and education—you’re sure to find you’ve got a lot to offer.