Write a Resume Headline that Catches Attention and Gets the Interview

A resume headline is a brief phrase or sentence that highlights your skills or expertise you possess. It is intended to gather attention quickly and get your resume a more detailed look. Place the resume headline directly below your contact information as a title for the entire resume. Treat it like any title, with proper capitalization and spacing.

How to Use a Resume Headline

You want the resume headline to be specific for the desired position. This is an excellent place to personalize the resume and remove the generic feel that most resumes have. The headline should make the HR manager feel that you are an excellent candidate for the position and make him spend a little extra time reviewing your resume.

A headline is ideal for candidates with lots of experience, awards, or special skills; but they can also be used by young candidates with no experience at all. It takes more creativity to find the best headline for an inexperienced candidate, but a good resume writer can quickly come up with several.

Tips for Writing Your Headline

Resume headlines follow the same rules for other titles. Here are a few tips:

Be concise. Your resume headline should be brief, a single phrase or a short sentence. Save the details for the resume. What is most important to this hiring manager? Your answer guides your choice of headline.

Use keywords. Keywords are one of your most valuable assets in a resume. The right keywords quickly identify you as a match for the employers desired qualities. Use the job title or keywords directly from the job description to demonstrate that you are a qualified applicant. If the job specifically asks for an experienced forensic accountant, your headline could read “Forensic Accountant with Five Years of Experience.” You have demonstrated that you meet the requirements at the top of the resume. All the details will follow in the work experience section.

Write a headline specific to each job. Making the headline specific to the job description shows that you want the job enough to customize your resume. You will stand out from the generic resumes that hiring managers so often receive and catch her attention.

Resume Headline Examples

You will find many good examples online and we will list a few here. Keep in mind that these are just examples and create a resume headline that is personal to you. Notice how the resume headline samples catch attention immediately and uses keywords specific to the job:

  • Sous Chef of an Award-Winning Restaurant
  • Veteran Recognized for Strong Work Ethic and Leadership Skills
  • Bilingual Customer Service Representative with 5-Years of Experience
  • IT Professional with Systems Analysis Experience
  • Award-winning Writer with SEO and SEM Experience
  • Nursing Graduate with Neonatal Intensive Care Specialty
  • Reduced Production Costs by 20% Over 2 Years
  • example of resume headline

You can choose the example of resume headline that best fits your situation and rework it to fit your resume. Highlight the skills, awards, or specialties that make you better qualified for the job than the average applicant.

Of course, the claims you make in your headline must be true and backed up by your resume. If you claim to be an award-winning journalist, you should list the specific awards in the body of your resume.

If you are having problems writing a good resume headline, use these phrases for brainstorming purposes and as a writing prompt:

  • Goal oriented…
  • Honor student…
  • Bilingual…
  • In depth knowledge of…
  • Accomplished…
  • Arranged…
  • Expertise in…
  • Proven Success in…
  • Award-winning…
  • Recognized for…
  • Strong orientation in…
  • Specializing in…

A Resume Headline Means More Attention, But You Still May Need Professional Help

Your resume is very personal, but it must also be flawless. It needs to convey who you are as a professional and why the hiring manager should not only grant you an interview, but hire you. Because it is so personal and specific to you, it is common to think that a resume writer could never capture the real you the way you can. But unless you have resume writing experience, this may be a big mistake.

At Resume Land, we give your resume our personal attention. We write every resume specifically for the client and avoid generic templates that scream mediocrity. We want our clients to rise to the top of the interview list, and the way to guarantee that is to write a resume that is job and client specific. We can do this because we hire professional resume writers in every industry. They know which keywords are relevant and how to attract the attention of the hiring manager. They will work with you to personalize your resume and attract the right kinds of attention.

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