Preparing Your Military Resume for Civilian Employment

It’s likely if you’re transitioning from military service to civilian work that you’ll be bringing with you years of highly trained experience and accomplished work.  What makes transitioning difficult is that civilian employers many times don’t understand military experience and accomplishments and how they are beneficial to their company.  Having a resume that explains your work experience, training and accomplishments is must.  Here are a few simple ways to prepare your military resume for civilian companies:

The structure and form you’ve used while in service doesn’t help companies understand you, your training or future goals.  De-militarizing your resume is a must if you’re looking to have employers understand you.  It’s best to assume that the individual you’ll be interviewing with knows little or nothing about the military.  In doing so, it’s important to properly word job titles, accomplishments, duties, and training in more easily understood terms and descriptions.  It’s important that you help potential employers understand how your skills were developed and honed on the battlefield, and that those skills are applicable in the position you are applying for.  Translating your experiences into terms and explanations that relate to the civilian working world is a must.  Doing this could mean the difference between success and failure in your civilian job hunt.  Help potential employers understand you and your experiences.

Make Your Experiences Speak for You
It’s true that every military career has a story to tell- so tell it!  Allow your work experience to speak for you.  If you were responsible for a large number of soldiers, handled an entire office of technology equipment, or managed the maintenance of a wide variety of military vehicles explain how these responsibilities are applicable and beneficial to their company.  Civilian job recruiters want to hire well trained, experienced individuals as much as they want to hire someone with years of leadership experience.  Don’t minimize your accomplishments or experiences; show them off!  Recruiters are looking for potential in a number of areas, so make sure you’re comprehensive in your experiences.

Be Clear with Your Objectives
It’s important to be clear, concise and professional about your civilian work objectives.  Expressing long term interest in an industry or company shows employers you’re a long term investment for their company.  Recruiters want to hire committed individuals that will be faithful employees.  Being clear about your long term and short term career goals will help recruiters understand why you’re transitioning, what you’re looking for in the transition and what you will strive to be in the long term scope of your career with them.  Be honest about your goals.  Telling employers what you want to be will only help them understand the full benefit you will provide to their company.

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