Ready to make a new human resources resume?
Due to the ever-increasing costs of business, companies today prefer hiring human resources professionals who can wear multiple hats.
They want an HR able to balance the company’s needs with those of its workers.
Your responsibilities will go beyond hiring and training new candidates…
You play a major role in fostering a positive work atmosphere and maintaining healthy relationships between employees in the workplace.
You’re expected to oversee everyone’s performance, resolve internal conflicts, and support employees to do their best work.
And a lot more…
Despite your wide knowledge in finding the best staff members and hiring them, being on the other end of the table is a little different. Which can easily make you blind to any shortcomings in the job hunt.
It’s crucial to get an outsider's perspective from a professional like you so you can look at your HR resume more objectively.
That’s what we’re going to help you with today.
Let’s dive in.
What you’ll learn here:
- How to write a human resources resume that turns heads
- 6 must-have sections for any HR professional resume
- Best human resources resume formatting and layout tips to awe recruiters
- +20 in-demand human resources soft/hard skills to show impact
- Why education and certificates are essential to succeeding in your job hunt
How to Write a Competitive Human Resources Resume
Resumes are a straightforward way to prove value and competence in any profession.
As an HR professional, your resume is also a proof of concept of your abilities in finding candidates, conducting interviews, and hiring the best of them.
Let’s imagine for a second that you’re already a human resources manager at your dream company. And you want to grow your team by hiring more HR employees.
How will you proceed?
You’ll first specify the tasks and daily duties the company is struggling with at the moment. Then you turn that into a detailed job offer that describes your perfect candidate.
Let’s switch chairs for a second and create a comprehensive human resources resume to get the phone ringing.
You must read the job description to identify all the required expertise and skills to excel at the job.
You'll pick a modern resume format and layout to organize your story into a resume. Always make sure to keep it brief and on-point so that it fits into a single page.
Here are the best resume tips for making an HR resume:
- Create separate headings for each section to keep your information organized
- Use a reverse-chronological format to best highlight your work history
- Use two consistent complementary colors to make essential details pop
- Use a readable, professional font with a size between 10 - 12 points
- Save your HR resume in PDF format to maintain a consistent page layout and design
In addition to that:
You should also look for keywords and phrases to use in your HR resume that make your application more relevant to the job role.
In the rest of this guide:
You’ll discover all the must-have sections for human resources resumes. You’ll learn how to improve each one of them to maximize your chances of landing your dream job.
Top resume sections for human resources applications:
What recruiters want to see in human resources resumes:
- Competence in hiring new employees while supporting their career growth
- Solid work ethics, integrity, and full confidentiality when dealing with sensitive information
- Experience in planning and preparing training programs and other internal activities within a strict timeline
- Detail-oriented skills to ensure maximum efficiency throughout all processes
- Outstanding problem-solving skills and the ability to resolve internal conflict calmly and professionally
Resume header tips for human resources resume
“This candidate has an amazing header — I should hire them right away!” said no recruiter ever.
That doesn’t mean you should neglect the header section because that could get you ignored.
A good human resources contact section features the following details:
- Full name
- Job title
- Phone number
- Email address
But it must do that in a simple, organized manner.
You’ll emphasize your name by writing it in a slightly larger font so that it’s read first.
Add the job title below or next to it.
Then place the rest of the details together to maintain a nice hierarchy.
Let’s take a quick look at how that might look on your resume:
2 Human Resources Resume Header Examples
From a graphic designer’s standpoint, everything is in perfect order. Yet there are still a few changes that you should make to enhance your resume.
Here’s how what you need to do:
- Use a standard address format featuring “City, State”
- Add a direct link to your LinkedIn profile
- Use a more professional email format such as “email@example.com”
- Write a better, more relevant job title (if possible)
Let’s make all these changes and see how the final header will turn out:
How to Write a Human Resources Resume Summary
If you have some hiring experience, you might already be familiar with the summary section.
It’s the part of the resume that you go to for finding quick answers when you’re about to hire a new employee. It tells you the story of your applicant and explains why it’s a mistake not to hire them.
Let’s write a summary that shows your recruiter why you’re worth it!
The most important details to showcase in the summary are:
- Years of experience
- Latest employer you worked for
- Biggest achievements and career wins
- Soft and hard skills
- Educational background, certificates, and any awards
Your summary doesn’t have to feature all of that, but doing so is going to multiply your chances of getting noticed.
Up until now, you only have a few separate details about you and your work history.
How do you turn that into a job-winning summary section?
By applying the following tips:
- Use brief, on-point sentences in a coherent manner
- Include specific keywords and phrases to increase relevance
- Add quantifiable accomplishments using numbers and statistics
- Don't use 1st or 3rd person pronouns to avoid repetition and keep your sentences short
With this knowledge under your belt, let’s take a quick look at some HR resume summary examples:
2 Human Resources Resume Summary Samples
That’s an example written by an inexperienced job seeker who will struggle to get hired. They’re making many beginner mistakes that will throw hiring managers off.
Let’s apply the expert-driven tips we shared above and see the final result!
How to highlight your human resources experience
As you already know…
This is the most important section in your resume and the one that’s going to get you hired.
Let’s refresh your memory for a second.
Since you’re using a reverse-chronological format, you’ll only feature your past few HR-related jobs. You must start from the most previous position and go back without leaving any gaps in your employment history.
For each job you add here, you must feature:
- The job position with a specific title
- Employment duration
- Company name and location (the description is optional)
- 3 to 5 bullet points showing your biggest achievements
Here are the rules for using bullet points:
- Only feature career wins that are relevant to the job you’re applying for
- Avoid 1st and 3rd person pronouns and use direct action verbs instead
- Support your claims with precise numbers and results to prove your worth
- Include required skills and keywords to appeal to both recruiters and ATS
Now, here’s the thing…
Some of your HR duties might be hard to quantify.
You can’t easily put a number on how much you’ve motivated employees in the company. It’s also difficult to prove how reliable and authentic you are with sensitive information.
So what should you do instead?
You can always expand on these ideas and explain what you did in the cover letter or once you land an interview. Therefore, don’t hesitate to include any accomplishments that you think are crucial.
Here’s a quick HR resume experience sample:
Human resources resume experience examples
Let’s be honest here:
You know this candidate is never landing a job in a million years with bullet points like this.
Let’s see how that can improve once we apply the bullet point writing tips above.
Remember to always be more specific in your achievements.
For example, share some metrics of:
- How many employees you managed within the organization
- The retention rate and employee satisfaction
- The total number of new hires and the employee retention rate
- The size of the budget you managed over the years
Most in-demand skills for human resources resumes
A captivating human resources resume features a skills section with unique talents that match the company’s needs.
So that’s what you’ll work on in this part.
As a rule of thumb:
Headhunters want to see two types of HR skills in this section:
Hard skills and soft skills.
Hard skills are specific to your daily HR tasks and can easily be measured by your employer. That includes your knowledge of human resources systems, laws and policies, budgeting, ATS applications, etc.
On the flip side:
Soft skills are all the personality-based characteristics that you need to thrive in the job. For example, the ability to communicate clearly with others or your attention to detail in the workplace.
We’ve features examples of these skills below to help you get a clearer picture of each type.
Let’s go back quickly to the job application and read through the requirements part. Then try to answer these questions:
- What daily tasks do they expect from you?
- Which applicant tracking systems do they use?
- What are their preferred job boards?
- Do they require knowledge of state and federal employment laws?
- What Payroll system do they use?
Every answer to each question is a skill you must include in your resume.
Not only will that help you stand out, but it’s also an excellent way to add relevant keywords that will get your resume noticed.
9 hard skills list to put on your human resources resume.
- HRIS systems
- Microsoft Office Suite
- PeopleSoft Applications
- Applicant tracking systems (Workday, Greenhouse, Freshteam)
- Job boards (Glassdoor, LinkedIn, Indeed)
- Work relationships
- HR policies & regulations
- Total rewards
- Talent acquisition
Best soft skills list for human resource specialists.
- Interpersonal skills
- Project management
- Performance management
How to feature relevant education for human resources jobs
If you’ve been through job boards looking for a human resources position lately, you might have noticed this:
Most HR job offers require a relevant college degree, especially for upper management positions.
An HR manager job requires a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field of study — such as Psychology or Management.
But that should come as no surprise!
Companies today prefer to hire candidates with a proven track record of early achievements. They look for HR applicants who have invested time and effort into their careers.
So, showcasing education in your human resources resume will be a huge plus…
Here’s how you can do that:
Should you feature certificates on your human resources resume?"?
Unlike education, certificates aren’t always mandatory for getting hired.
They could be the game-changer that ends your job hunt with the offer of your dreams.
Because while 90% of applicants won’t bother with getting any certificates, this could be your chance to stand out.
Having certificates on your resume adds an extra level of competence to your application. It enables you to edge out the competition and come out as highly-qualified.
And that’s true even when you don’t have decades of experience under your belt.
The real question is:
Which human resources certificates should you add to your resume?
Top 7 human resources certificates for your resume:
- Personalize your human resources resume to match the hiring company’s needs by reading carefully through each job description
- Use a clean layout with a reverse-chronological format to make your HR resume shine
- Prioritize quantifiable achievements and career wins to highlight your experience and prove your worth to the recruiter
- Add an education section and certificates to leap over other candidates and land the job of your dreams
- Choose unique, job-specific hard/soft skills to stick out as a highly-qualified human resources professional