Resume Tips

Hospitality industry resume advice and examples.

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 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.

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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.

Make that first impression count

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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.

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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.

Create your resume

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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

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Learn by example

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

Ready to Build Your Hospitality Resume? Use Our Online Resume Builder Today.

What people are saying about Gecko Hospitality

Enje Brown | Managing Director of Operations – See Forever Foundation

My name is Enje Brown and I am the Managing Director of Operations for See Forever Foundation / Maya Angelou Public Charter Schools located in Washington, DC.  At present, we provide about 250 daily vended meals to all staff and students located at our 5600 East Capitol St. location.  We are in the final stages […]

Bamba Admin

“We have always had a great working relationship and good success with the folks at Gecko as well as the candidates they have provided us over the years.”

Marla Neely | Vice President – Special Events, Foundation For The Carolinas

Gecko Hospitality helped me fill a unique position in a fraction of the time it has previously taken. Chris used his extensive resources and knowledge of the hospitality industry to provide us with multiple, qualified applicants. Gecko saved me the time and frustration I usually encounter with the hiring process and filled the position within […]

Schuyler Clark

I had the pleasure of working with Chris Shatto and Gecko Hospitality and had a great experience from beginning to end. The process went smoothly and the communication was direct and thorough. This team found exactly what I was looking for and would highly recommend their services for myself and for my hotel.  Thank you […]

Aaron Engholm

Thanks for your dedication and response…I had a great experience with your company and I will recommend you to anyone in the search!

Thomas Self

It’s been great working with Gecko Hospitality.  They made sure to thoroughly educate themselves on our company culture before seeking out candidates for us, and since, their communication and follow-up has been impeccable from candidate introduction to selection process scheduling.  They’ve matched us with some great candidates that wouldn’t have discovered us through our own […]

Julia Li

We would like to recommend Gecko Hospitality! We were opening our G58 fine dining restaurant and needed a resource to attract top management talent. We contacted Gecko Hospitality and they shared a tremendous amount of information. They gave us references on resources to help with formalizing the interview process and making valuable recommendations. We received […]

Matt Calamari

We would like to recommend Gecko Hospitality as a excellent recruiting partner. We approached the Gecko office with the task of finding an Operating Partner to develop our new Poke Bar concept. We discussed the details with the Gecko recruiter. Their depth of knowledge in operations and the market helped in making valuable suggestions. We […]

Datra Herzog – Owner | The Inns at St. Albans

I was fortunate to be connected with Megan and Chris in my latest search for a General Manager at The Inns at St. Albans. We are a family-owned Inn operation that was needing a professional approach and additional staff to help us get to the next level. We were referred by a world-renowned luxury resort […]

Zachary J. Jaindl – Chief Operations Officer, Vault 364

November 16, 2017 To Whom It May Concern: In early 2017 I introduced “Vault 634”, a new venture under my umbrella of companies that would transform a historic bank building in the heart of Allentown, Pennsylvania into the region’s premier wedding and event venue. We decided to harness the property’s irreplaceable gilded age architecture and […]

Ricky Lyons – General Manager, Westwood Golf Club

I wanted to thank you and your company for the tremendous guidance we received on our recent hiring of a Food and Beverage Manager for Westwood Golf Club. Karl Ludeke was outstanding in guiding us through the process and made my job very easy. He culled through the candidates only aligning us with the candidates […]

Drew T. – McAnderson’s Inc. dba McDonald’s

We approached Gecko Hospitality more than a year ago with some very specific hiring needs. Joan and her staff listened to our requirements and has been able to send us some highly qualified candidates. I appreciate the thorough job of vetting the candidates to make sure we only see individuals that meet our hiring needs.  […]

Rob Duckworth

We enjoy using Gecko Hospitality’s recruiting services. As we grow and add more brands to our portfolio it is always good to reach out to Gecko Hospitality and gather viable management candidates. They do a great job providing us with talented management on an on-going basis but also helped when we opened our new casual […]

Ray Smith

I would like to take the time to send in some acknowledgement for Rob Wallace. I personally had the honor to work with Mr. Wallace while seeking out my next opportunity. Rob went above and beyond for me. Not the cliche “politically correct” above and beyond. But, truly Rob took his time to assist me. […]

Rodrigo Velazco

We were searching for a kitchen manager candidate and the normal job sites weren’t doing the trick. We were spending hundreds of dollars a week and couldn’t find any candidates worthy of interviewing. That’s when we decided to reach out to Gecko Hospitality. Joan from Gecko immediately made us feel comfortable. She was knowledgeable about […]

Aaron Campos

Pairing up with Gecko to fulfill our staffing has been extremely advantageous, not only for our management team but also for the high caliber candidates that we have been presented with. The professionalism in which they work combined with amazing responsiveness created a strong foundation and business partnership.

Anne and Rick Becker

I wanted to follow up to let you know how much we appreciate you connecting us with our new hire. We understand this is your job but we can’t tell you what a fantastically perfect fit he is for our GM role. We have had a very difficult past 4-5 years with various GMs that […]

Chris Abbey

Throughout my long-tenured career, I have known many recruiting companies and numerous recruiters. That said, I can honestly tell you that you preside over the best Hospitality Recruiting Company in the country. Rest assured, whenever my current company or others in my network need talent, or when industry professionals are looking for a job, I […]