Technical expertise highlighted in curriculum vitae can be a sure way to catch a potential employer’s eye. Although every employer expects to pay for on the job training, a potential employee that has certain prerequisite skills will speed them to productive output. Every employer expects to see the basic list of universities attended and graduation dates and list of positions you work and the duties involved.
Put Technical Expertise as a Single Line on a Bullet Following Employment Duties
One way to highlight technical expertise is to create a bolded “Skills:” line following employment duties. This tends to be more effective than a paragraph list of skills in a special section. The skills should match the duties used in the coursework or on the job because it offers a reality check for the employer.
By placing the skills within a timeline of duties, employers should see a continual expansion of technical expertise and can judge the duration of your experience with those skills. Note: put all dates in reverse chronological order and do not mix and match dates and times. Be sure to put a complete time scale from working age through the current date.
Skills lists are a great way to fill in unemployed time by showcasing how you earned A+ certification at Microsoft, learned a foreign language or earned your GED. Self-training fills holes in your curriculum vitae with a positive message for employers.
List First Aid, CPR or other Medical Training in Your Skill Set
Many employers think first aid skills, CPR and other medical training as a positive since they are skills that are useful during emergencies. Mothers who have such skills or training in order to help their children can find this as a positive statement about their responsibilities.
List Foreign Languages Prominently in Your Skill Set
Foreign language skills are in hot demand especially in government positions since you can stand in as an interpreter. Some positions give you a bonus if you have language skills. High demand language skills are Chinese, Japanese, Russian, Spanish, French, German but oddly known skills or the ability to sign for the deaf are also helpful.
Avoid Listing Commonly Expected Technical Expertise in CV Skills List
Do not use non-specific or commonly expected technical expertise. Do not say laptop, PC, or word processing in general.
Put Operating Systems Specifics in the Curriculum Vitae Skills List
Because of the continual change in computing, operating specific skills are in high demand. Many employers spend a lot of money retraining personnel to operate under the most current operating system.
CV Skills Examples: Windows 7, Linux, Windows Vista
Don’t put duties like backing up data, installations, account set up utilities in the skills list; instead use these in the description of job duties.
Avoid Putting Every Unix Command, App or Subset of Skills in Your Curriculum Vitae Skills List
You may be one up on all of your friends for noticing the hottest way to hack into accounts or if you learned to fork procedures or have the largest collection of apps on your Ipad. What is important is having learned a set of skills that are overall quantified. Expert skills are best to showcase.
Put Media and Applications in the Curriculum Vitae Skills Lists
With the onset of 4GL Wireless Devices, specific telephony media—Blackberry, Android, Apple, etc. along with expertise with specific applications can be a calling card.
CV Skills Examples: Verizon, Android, Foursquare, Twitter, MS Office, MS Access 2007, Adobe
Put Programming Language Expertise in the Curriculum Vitae Skills List
For those in the science, engineering, finance etc. areas, the ability to create small programs and/ or databases often can appear desirable to employers. Use the job duties to explain the complexity of your experience in terms of system users, hours of operation i.e. 24×7, database load—users, tables, transactions and how you interact with the system i.e. provide requirements, design, build, maintain, use.
CV Skills Examples: C++, Visual C, Java, MS Access Basic, Fortran
Put Design Tool Experience in the Curriculum Vitae Skills List
Engineers, scientists and computer designers that use tools that enforce design methodologies or are used in drafting, tooling or other job duties, should also specify their skills with these tools in the skills list.
CV Skills Examples: Autodesk 3.0, CATIA V, MATLab, SPSS 7.0, Visio, P+
Put Test and Laboratory Tools Experience in the Curriculum Vitae Skills List
If you’ve worked with any tools of the trade, including robots, DNA Analyzers, Electronics Testbeds, microprocessors, electron microscopes, providing details of the models and or tools can make you seem a complete whiz compared to someone without this information.
Don’t Forget to Include Certifications and Professional Attainments
Passing the professional engineers test, state accounting tests, or earning other certifications are all good things to include in your attainments.
Final Comments About Curriculum Vitae Skills Lists
The CV Skills: list helps to keep your curriculum vitae focused on performance, duties, and responsibilities by providing a time-related list of skills that will keep your curriculum vitae information well-organized, relevant to employers and compact.
Example CV Employment Entry:
Job Title, Employer, Date Range
Designed x, y, z systems, supported 500 users, maintained system 24×7, reduced system load time by 50%, had 100% problem resolution rate.
Skills: Windows 7, CATIA, Linux, Android, SPSS 7.0, Fortran, C++
Analysis: the employer