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Resume Help--- Changing Industries

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
I'm hoping that some on the experienced hiring managers on this board can help me out with this question.

I'm trying to transition from government to the private sector. I have attended several big conferences and government briefings for the industry that I'm interested in. (High performance materials) They cover technological advances and regulatory challenges facing the industry, etc. I have read a couple highly relevant technical textbooks, and I keep up to date with industry news magazines. In short, I know a lot about the industry because I enjoy studying it.

What would be the best way to format my resume to let the hiring managers know that I have a passion for this industry? A "Continuing Education" section? A "skills-based," rather than a traditional "experience-based" resume?"

Any pointers would be appreciated. Let me know if I've left anything out.
Edited by jrd617 - 1/2/12 at 2:08am
post #2 of 7
Thread Starter 
bump
post #3 of 7
Probably not the best time for you to be changing industries. You have to understand that adding a section in a resume is not going to hold a candle to an out of work person with years of experience. I don't care what you write on a resume. The job market is a very competitive place right now and hiring companies get to pick the best of the best.

Instead of focusing on adding a paragraph to your resume you may want to consider how you can gain experience in the field you want to get into. Anyone can read a book or attend a conference. You need real experience if you want to be competitive in today's job market. You may have to consider things like volunteering or doing an internship. Perhaps you can work at one of the big conferences that you attended. That would allow you to network as well as give you an experience you can put on your resume.

Do you have a degree that would allow you to get into the field you want to get into? Is there a respected certification that you can get for this field?

If you want to go the resume route, I really do not think it matters what you title the new section. I have hired hundreds of people and never once have lamented about a poorly titled resume. I would also re-do your entire resume and bullet point skills and responsibilities you have had in other positions that are relevant to the new industry you want to get into. If the new field requires you to be very analytical then I would certainly focus on finding previous job responsibilities and highlight those. Again, if your experience is not relevant you won't even get a sniff. Make it relevant.

Invest in a Resume book. They have resumes for all types of situations. Pick up a cover letter book while you are at it. You can use the cover letter to explain why you want to change professions. Martin Yate's books are good. I know he has examples of what to write for changing fields. Best $10 you will ever spend-

http://www.amazon.com/Knock-Dead-Resumes-Standout-Authority/dp/144050587X/ref=sr_1_9?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1325805860&sr=1-9

Good luck.
post #4 of 7
Don't listen to him

Those people are unemployed for a reason--their experience hasn't helped them get a job yet or keep the one they had so you aren't in any worse of a position. You can't do anything about the state of the economy so don't worry about it or let it hold you back.

You just have to be a better candidate. In this situation though, you probably can't put a ton of emphasis on the resume...You are less likely to get what you want just by sending out resumes than you are by leveraging those conferences and briefings you have been going to. A continuing education section might not be a terrible idea...but really at this point the resume is going to have to be mostly a formality that demonstrates that you are competent in what you do as a worker even if it is not directly related to the industry.
post #5 of 7
Don't have much experience in these matters. but it sounds that what you want to convey would be better suited for a cover letter or through actually talking to someone. Of course, that is what always seems to be the catch: if only people would give me an interview I could prove to them....
post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by otc View Post

Those people are unemployed for a reason--their experience hasn't helped them get a job yet or keep the one they had so you aren't in any worse of a position.

Wow. How does one have internet service when clearly they are so out of touch with reality?

Quote:
Originally Posted by it's ok ma' View Post

Of course, that is what always seems to be the catch: if only people would give me an interview I could prove to them....

Very true. OP-If you are fortunate enough to get an interview you will want to be very prepared.
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Willie5566 View Post

Probably not the best time for you to be changing industries. You have to understand that adding a section in a resume is not going to hold a candle to an out of work person with years of experience. I don't care what you write on a resume. The job market is a very competitive place right now and hiring companies get to pick the best of the best.
Instead of focusing on adding a paragraph to your resume you may want to consider how you can gain experience in the field you want to get into. Anyone can read a book or attend a conference. You need real experience if you want to be competitive in today's job market. You may have to consider things like volunteering or doing an internship. Perhaps you can work at one of the big conferences that you attended. That would allow you to network as well as give you an experience you can put on your resume.
Do you have a degree that would allow you to get into the field you want to get into? Is there a respected certification that you can get for this field?
If you want to go the resume route, I really do not think it matters what you title the new section. I have hired hundreds of people and never once have lamented about a poorly titled resume. I would also re-do your entire resume and bullet point skills and responsibilities you have had in other positions that are relevant to the new industry you want to get into. If the new field requires you to be very analytical then I would certainly focus on finding previous job responsibilities and highlight those. Again, if your experience is not relevant you won't even get a sniff. Make it relevant.
Invest in a Resume book. They have resumes for all types of situations. Pick up a cover letter book while you are at it. You can use the cover letter to explain why you want to change professions. Martin Yate's books are good. I know he has examples of what to write for changing fields. Best $10 you will ever spend-
http://www.amazon.com/Knock-Dead-Resumes-Standout-Authority/dp/144050587X/ref=sr_1_9?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1325805860&sr=1-9
Good luck.

You missed the call of my question I'm asking for resume formatting help, not advice on whether or not I should go for switching industries. I'm a little obsessive when it comes to resume details. I have applicable experience from my current industry and several contacts in the new preferred industry. biggrin.gif The resume book is a good suggestion, though.


Quote:
Originally Posted by otc 
You just have to be a better candidate. In this situation though, you probably can't put a ton of emphasis on the resume...You are less likely to get what you want just by sending out resumes than you are by leveraging those conferences and briefings you have been going to.

+1
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