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Writing a Winning Resume Objective: Tips & Tricks

When applying for a new job, it doesn’t matter whether you are a beginner or someone looking to further their career. Because a well-defined resume with clarity in presentation and thought goes a long way in securing you that dream job! Sometimes, it does matter how well you state the reason and objective of joining the company. In such situations, a clearly-defined statement of your resume objective and intent can further the cause of your career and future employment!

What is an Resume Objective Statement?

We’ve all heard the term be loosely thrown around in professional conversations or while dealing with prospective employers. But what exactly is an Objective Statement column in a resume supposed to do? What information about the applicant does it communicate with the employer? 

A resume objective (also referred to as a Career Objective) is a short overview of your short-term professional goals. It is an explanation of why you’re seeking employment with the said company or industry. Resume objectives are often placed at the top of your resume to capture the hiring manager’s attention first and foremost. It has to be able to make a strong case for why you’re the best candidate for the job.

A resume objective is your opportunity to let employers know that your skills and talents align with the job’s requirements. You can customize a well-written resume objective statement for the job you’re applying for and add value to your profile. This short paragraph shows employers that you’ve clearly defined your professional goals. That you have the necessary skills to excel in the position you’re applying.

Is it necessary to be writing a resume objective for all avenues and types of jobs? When exactly do you have to include a resume objective statement? And even if you do, what do you write in that short paragraph? 

In this article, let us look at what makes a good resume objective and what one needs to include in this short and professional description to ensure a good first impression is being made and that your chances of getting employed are better.

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When to include a Resume Objective?

A resume objective statement is the best way to help your resume stand out irrespective of your professional level or background because the Resume Objective is where you have to win your first battle towards being unemployed. There are quite a few situations when including an objective in your resume is particularly helpful:

Traditionally, a resume objective statement section might look something similar to this:

Resume Objective: To obtain an entry-level marketing position at a Fortune 500 company.

However, today’s resume objective statement not only states the applicant’s intention but also aims to “sell” the skills, expertise, and experience of the job seeker to the recruiter by strategically highlighting such specific information and your career goals.

It should be short, to-the-point, and customized for each resume that you send out.

Examples of Strong Resume Objectives

In my seven years as a Technical Engineer, I have acquired knowledge on process simulation, optimization and integration, and inherently safer design principles. In an effort to enhance my knowledge and further my career, I’d like to bring these skills to the Technical Department Manager position.

With a demonstrated history in business administration and process-oriented systems, I’m now looking for an instructional position that will benefit from my experience while promoting my personal interest in furthering education.

Seeking employment in a professional environment where I can diversify and improve upon the skills gained during my five years as a Customer Support Manager. As the Vice-President of sales, I would focus on enhancing the company’s productivity and reputation while improving my own.

Human Resources Manager looking for a challenging new opportunity. My career goal is to capitalize upon new opportunities for personal growth within an organization that values hard work, integrity, and results. I look forward to hearing if I’m a good fit for the Head of Operations position.

Is a Resume Objective Necessary?

Resume objectives are rarely recommended by career experts and professionals these days because many consider it redundant. In a lot of cases, it comes across as boastful too! To be fair, it is precisely this act of tooting your own horn that would get you noticed. It would be prudent to include a smart and creative objective statement if you are looking to shift careers radically. If you’re tailoring your resume to a job listing, then it presents an opportunity to include keywords and job titles. But these days, most experts suggest that if the job description does not explicitly state that an objective statement should be included, it is not necessary to do so.

Here are a couple of reasons the traditional resume objective format has fallen out of favor in recent years:

1. A Resume Objective Statement can be misrepresented as Self Advertising

A resume objective informs the hiring manager what you want professionally, but not what you can do for the company. It’s a great way to showcase your career goals. But almost all companies will typically be more concerned with hiring someone aligned with their best interests.

When putting down the objective, ensure that it reflects your needs and goals. Generic resume objectives will leave hiring managers with a lot of doubts and questions. Your intentions and professional goals don’t explain to the hiring manager why you’re the best person for the position they’re looking to fill.

Most individuals who add an objective to their resume tend to focus on long-term achievements, states of mind, or phases of enlightenment, which are more appropriate for philosophical discussion and not professional ones. This is the wrong approach since most companies are only interested in that part of what you can confidently contribute.

2. A Resume Objective is NOT a Resume Summary Statement

As far as introductory resume statements go, the resume objective isn’t as useful as the modern resume summary statement. One major difference is that usually, a resume summary statement highlights hard and proven skills and accomplishments, making the job seeker sound more capable and assertive to the employer. In contrast, a resume objective highlights the job seeker’s professional aspirations.

A resume summary statement is more assertive in tone overall. It uses quantitative results to offer the hiring manager proof about the things that you, as an employee, have accomplished and will continue to achieve if hired.

Here are a few examples of traditional objective statements compared to resume summary statements and how the difference in tone and presentation of the very same facts can come across much differently to another person towards creating a great first impression:

Traditional Objective Statement: “To obtain a position in process management.”

Modern Summary statement: “Process Management Representative with eight years of experience working with customer accounts with over 90% customer satisfaction rating.”

Traditional Objective Statement: “To get a job as an Account Manager.”

Modern Summary Statement: “Sales and Marketing Executive with 8+ years of experience in commercial sales and marketing. I have consistently exceeded sales goals by 20% or more during my entire tenure.”

Traditional Objective Statement: “To work as a Supply Chain Manager in the automobile industry.”

Modern Summary Statement: “Supply Chain Analyst and motivated team worker with a track record of maintaining and enhancing positive client relationships. The specialty lies in identifying and solving problem service areas.”

How to Write an Objective for a Resume

A resume objective is your opportunity to let employers know that your skills and talents align with the requirements of their open position. You can customize a well-written resume objective for the job you’re applying for and add value to your resume that sets it apart from other applicants.

Points to remember while writing a resume objective statement

Keep it concise

In most cases, a recruiter will be sifting through several resumes during the hiring process to determine which applicants have the skills and experience necessary to move on to the next step. By keeping your resume objective short, crisp, and sharp, you will be more successful in holding their attention amongst all the others in a sea of resumes! This is not a place to add padding to your text! A couple of clean, concise, creative, and smartly-written sentences are all you need. Make sure every word is deliberate and necessary. Try removing filler words, such as ‘a,’ ‘the,’ and ‘like’ as much as possible. This would help keep the reader focused on the most important parts of your resume, the ones you would want to be highlighted.

Tailor it to the position you are applying for

Instead of writing a general objective statement, adapt it specifically for the position and industry that you’re applying. Highlight the position you are applying for and describe your goals only as they pertain to the job for which you’re applying. Start by reading the job description and mentioning the skills or requirements that align with your strongest attributes or expertise. When you include an objective specific to the job role, the recruiter is more likely to want to learn more details about your professional experience.

Use it as a first impression-tool

Great stories need a captivating hook to get your audience engaged. Your resume objective should also immediately grab the reader’s attention.

Highlight a few essential skills and your current professional goals. With this, you give the recruiter an idea of what to expect in the rest of your resume.

Lead with your strongest attributes

Consider your strengths that are not only relevant to the job role, but also attributes that you’re proud to share. Make sure your strengths would be beneficial for the company. For example, “Organized and Motivated,” “Dedicated and meets deadlines,” “Excellent team player,” or “Proven leadership skills.”

Highlight any relevant licenses, certifications, or degrees

While your education experience will be listed elsewhere on your resume, including any essential certifications or degrees in your resume objective can immediately put you in a good position. This is especially important to include if you’re new to the job market or you’re changing careers or industries.

Add Value

The most critical factor that hiring managers want to know when deciding is the value the applicant can contribute. Clearly stating your value propositions increases your chance of moving forward over another candidate of the same experience level. This would be the right place to note your ambition, work ethic, history of success, or unique skills.

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Some Examples of Resume Objectives

Take a look at the following examples and try to outline your resume objective statement creatively!

New graduate/entering the job market for the first time:

“I am a highly motivated business school graduate who is seeking a full-time position in sales where I can lend my knowledge of market analytics to help your organization improve profitability.”
“I am a self-driven team player and aspiring restaurateur with proven communications skills seeking to grow my knowledge of the hospitality industry and use my conversational skills as a Restaurant Sales Executive for your fast food franchise.”

Career or Industry change:

“Dedicated and experienced accounting professional with proven success managing finances for mid-size commercial organizations. Seeking an opportunity to use my decade of experience to serve the state government.”
“Accomplished leader in online content management seeking a new career path with a nonprofit organization. I am looking for opportunities to apply my passion for philanthropy and use my professional experience to drive positive change in my community.”
“Experienced human resources professional seeking to leverage extensive knowledge of employee relations, business, and positive communication in a client-focused position to ensure a positive experience.”

Moving to a new geographic area:

“I am an experienced software developer relocating to San Francisco in August and seeking employment with a fast-growing startup. I bring over eight years of experience writing JavaScript and more than ten years’ experience in the technology industry.”
“Current kitchen manager with over ten years’ experience in the restaurant industry seeking to begin a sous chef position when I relocate to Chicago in September. I am eager to apply my culinary skills and grow my experience as part of an established institution.”

Seeking advancement in the same industry:

“I am an organized and motivated administrative professional with over seven years of experience in the automotive industry. I am seeking an opportunity to use my team management skills as an office manager in your fast-growing automobile dealership.”
“I am a driven and ambitious sales professional with a proven history of exceeding goals and achieving high client satisfaction ratings. I am seeking a sales manager position with a fast-growing technology company where I can dovetail my enthusiasm for relationship-building and my passion for innovation.”
"As a public educator with nearly two decades of experience, I am seeking to serve as a high school principal in my local community. I am eager to use my proven leadership skills to continue the district’s legacy of quality education and help prepare students to succeed."

Although a resume objective is only 1 – 2 sentences long, make sure it showcases why you’re applying for the job. State what values you can offer to the company.

This short paragraph shows employers your professional goals and the necessary skills to excel in the position you’re applying for in less than four or five sentences. By crafting a compelling objective statement, you can help make it easier for employers to remember you and will get you one step closer toward landing your new job. Start building your resume now with an online resume builder!

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