How to Write a Hospitality Resume That Gets Noticed

Your resume is the first chance to make a great impression on a potential employer. What does yours say about you?

Of course, your resume highlights your skills and experiences, but it’s also showcases your knowledge of the industry, location or position in which you’re interested. Never submit a “cookie cutter” resume: make sure it’s been customized to speak directly about the job you want. This is your chance to shine!

Dig into the following resources to help your resume get noticed.

 

1

Back to basics

First things first, what do you want to do with your life? Stop and think about what job(s) you want or career path you’ll pursue. Knowing which direction you’d like to take – even in the immediate future – will make writing your resume easier and more natural.

2

Make that first impression count

You have about six seconds to make an impression with your resume. That’s how long hiring managers spend with each resume. You need to stand out, while maintaining a level of professionalism expected in the industry.

Tips for making every second count:

  • Focus! Know the job description and focus every skill or responsibility on how it applies to that job.
  • Keep it brief. Stick to a one-page resume for early career jobs. Two pages for more experienced roles.
  • Proofread. Perfection in grammar, spelling and punctuation is the only acceptable standard.
  • Keep it clean. Design your own or use a resume template that’s clean, visually appealing and easy to read.
  • Use keywords. Get to the point with words that not only define your skills and experience, but stand out, too.
  • Get a second opinion. Have someone else review your resume for clarity, effectiveness and a strong proofread.
3

What resume type are you?

There are two primary types of resumes: chronological and functional. Chronological resumes feature a listing of your job experience by date, with the most recent first, while functional focuses on skills and accomplishments.

Depending on where you are in your career or where you’re headed next, choose the resume type that will best tell your story. Don’t forget that you only have six seconds to make a first impression, so selecting the most appropriate format can be the difference between landing an interview or not.

Chronological resumes work best when:

  • Recent employers and/or job titles are impressive.
  • You’re staying in the same career field.
  • Job history shows progress.

Reasons you might not want to go chronological:

  • Changing career fields.
  • Noticeable job-hopping.
  • Gaps in employment.

Functional resumes work best when:

  • Emphasizing skills not used in recent work experience.
  • Focusing on skills and accomplishments over employment history.
  • Changing careers or re-entering the job market.
  • Career growth has not been continuous and progressive.
  • You have a variety of unrelated work experiences.

Reasons functional won’t work for you:

  • Little work and/or leadership experience
  • You want to emphasize promotions and/or career growth.

A third option: combination resume.

A combination of both chronological and functional puts the best parts of each to work, using accomplishments and skills in categorical sections or a single qualifications summary section. It also includes a brief work history and education summary.

Combination-style resumes are best for candidates changing jobs in a related career field or for those who want to promote their most marketable skills.

4

Create your resume

Ready to get started?

Open a new document and consider adding these sections:

Contact Info: your name, street address, phone number and email. Be sure to use a phone number and email you can answer or check on the regular, especially during the workweek.

Objective: Answer the question, “what do I want to do?” Tell employers what your goals are and where your career is headed. The type of position and level you’re aiming for should be included; highlight your interests, be specific and outline where you see yourself fitting into the organization.

Qualifications Summary: Most often used in a combination-style resume, this section condenses your background into a few targeted, keyword phrases.

Work Experience: Your work experience should demonstrate what you’ve done, and what you can do. Start with your most recent employer and stick to responsibilities that highlight your abilities, especially as it relates to the job you’d like to get. Omit fluff and anything that doesn’t make your case for being a great candidate.

Education: Have less than three years’ experience in your field or education that relates to your objective? List education before experience. Have more? Experience can go first. Start with your most recent degree or program, and list additional degrees or relevant coursework next. You’ll want to quickly answer the question, “what have I learned?” with what you feature.

Additional information: What else do you need to tell your story? Consider how these sections may help:

  • Professional affiliations
  • Internship experience
  • Accomplishments
  • Travel
  • Scholarships
  • Publications
  • Training
  • Technical skills
  • Leadership activities
  • Interests
  • Presentations
  • Volunteer activities
5

Learn by example

There’s an art and a science to creating a masterful resume. Check out these examples to get inspired:

Resume Example 1

Resume Example 2

Resume Example 3

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