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What Should You Include on Your Resume


You have acquired a lot of skills and abilities from your education, work experience, and life in general. After all of the work and time you have invested in yourself, you need to be sure to reflect this on your resume.

Skills are broken into two categories: Hard and Soft. While both are essential, it’s important to know the difference and make the most of your both. So, what is the preferred way to highlight your skills on your resume?

What is the difference between hard and soft skills?

Your hard skills represent the knowledge you have gained through experience or educations. It is more specific to the kinds of careers you are pursuing. This may include language skills, computer skills, or certifications. These are important if they are relevant to the position you are seeking. For example, you may have excellent hair cutting skills, but if that is not the career you are planning to pursue, it would not be prudent to indicate those skills on your resume. Even though we all have a wide variety of hard skills, if they are not relevant to the job you are seeking, leave them off your resume.

Your soft skills are those that are considered somewhat part of who you are and how you function in the office environment. Some typical soft skills include these:

  1. Communication
  2. Collaboration
  3. Self- Motivation
  4. Problem Solving
  5. Multi-tasking

These are best either mentioned in your resume alongside your hard skills, or left off for the interview. In all of my writing classes, the professors always said, “show, don’t tell.” If you want to showcase your soft skills, it’s best to do so in the context of a problem you solved, or an accomplishment.

I love to use the hybrid resume to combine the chronological and functional resume, by having a designated area for your work history and an area for listing your functional  skills. Incorporate your soft skills into your work history by showing an accomplishment that really showcases that skill. Hard skills are best presented in a list, since they do not require contextual proof.

Hybrid resumes are great for submitting applications to companies using Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). Applicant Tracking Systems filter through resumes for keywords. ATS’s then rank applicants according to a hiring manager’s priorities in a candidate. The more skills in your resume which match the company’s profile, the better you rank.