How to Prepare a Military Resume

Part one:

Writing a great military to civilian resume can seem daunting but if you follow the guidelines of this three-part series, we will help ensure your military resume is both read and understood by top employers.

Resume Preparation Instructions

There are three important features to every resume – the resume must:

  • Be organized and concise
  • Contain pertinent information
  • Have a professional appearance

The instructions below will help you produce and refine your resume into one that exemplifies these three attributes.

Resumes should be organized into the following sections: Heading, Education or Training, and Experience.

HEADING: The heading should be at the top of the page. It must contain your name, mailing address, phone, and email address(es). This tells employers who you are and gives them multiple ways to contact you, including by mail if they need to send you paperwork or an offer letter to sign.

Bradley N. Morris
1825 Barrett Lakes Blvd., Kennesaw GA, 30144
H (858) 638-7185 // C (858) 638-1212 //

HEADLINE (optional): A headline is not required, and in many cases takes up space that could otherwise be dedicated to your Experience section; however, if you decide to use a headline on your resume, it should grab the reader’s attention and ‘sell’ your skills. Think, “Why should this company hire me for this job?” See the following examples or consult your Candidate Recruiter on this topic.

Example 1:
A combat-tested leader, pilot, instructor and operations officer fluent in Spanish and Russian.
Example 2:
A combat-tested U.S. Marine Corps leader specializing in maintenance and project management, large-scale logistics operations and employee development.

Technical Expertise: Especially for engineering and technician careers, a rule of thumb is that the more technical aspects you can include on your resume the better; this applies to engineers and senior Non-Commissioned Officers as well as more junior technicians.

For enlisted service members, leadership and supervision are important, but one must not forget to emphasize hands-on experience. A technical expertise section makes it easy for hiring managers to identify the types of equipment and tools that you have managed, fixed and operated. Think big picture (i.e. hydraulics, pneumatics, ladder logic, boilers, generators, etc.) rather than military-specific systems and terminology. As demonstrated in some of the examples above, technical expertise can be rolled into the “showcase” portion of your resume in lieu of a separate section.

• Mechanical Systems • AC & DC Circuits • Technical Manuals
• Frequency Counters • Electronic Cooling • Electrical Theory
• Solid State Devices • Electronic Theory • Multimeters
• Fluid Mechanics • Quality Assurance • Scheduled Maintenance
• Troubleshooting • Schematics and Diagrams • Electromechanical Systems

For IT resumes, technical expertise may be displayed in several sub-categories:

Operating Systems: Sun Solaris (6 yrs), HP-UX (5 yrs), Linux (4 yrs), Novell (5 yrs), Windows NT Server (2 yrs), Cisco IOS 9-12 (5 yrs)
Software: HP Openview (4 yrs), CiscoWorks (1 yr), Microsoft Exchange (2 yrs), Side Winder Firewalls (2 yrs), ISS (2 yrs)
Hardware: Pargain T1/E1 modems, Cabletron switches, Cisco 2500, 4000 and 7000 routers
Media: 10Base2 (BNC, COAX), 10BaseT (UTP)

Part 2 Education and Experience>>