You’ve been running offices smoothly for years. Your office manager skills are top notch.
Or maybe you’ve been running your dormitory apartment for years while your roommates sit and do nothing, but you really want to be running offices…
You have fingers in every pie, from providing customer service, to supporting accounting, to ordering paper. When something goes wrong, everyone turns to you.
So, you took the plunge and pulled up dozens of interesting office manager job descriptions for your resume.
You were ghosted.
Confused and distressed, you started thinking about what you did wrong.
If you had all the right qualifications and still got no response – chances are it’s your office manager resume.
But how do you turn this around?
The first step to landing a new Office Manager role is to make sure that your office manager resume is superb.
Get your A game on with our office manager resume guide.
Here’s what this guide will teach you:
✔ How to plan the perfect office manager resume sections to include
✔ What your office manager resume header needs to catch the hiring manager’s attention
✔ How to use an objective or summary to tell your story
✔ How to reframe your experience to make it pop
✔ What soft and technical skills will make the difference and get you hired
✔ How to add personality to stand out from other applicants
Office manager resume samples for inspiration
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How should you begin to write your office manager resume?
Office managers never have enough time for everything they need to get done.
If you jump in and create an unfocused resume, you’re going to waste a lot of time applying to jobs you’re not going to get.
The process of creating an office manager resume that will actually get you hired starts with:
- Choosing the right sections to include
- Understanding what kind of office management skills the job expects and emphasizing them (no two office manager roles are identical)
What does your office manager resume header absolutely need?
Getting your header right is simple but critical. You need to show you have relevant certifications, a professional web presence, etc. quickly.
So, keep your header straight and to the point. It should project confidence and professionalism.
There are only two small differences between these examples, but they make all the difference. It says “I went out of my way to get a certification and work hard on maintaining my professional online presence” tells a hiring manager you’re on top of things and you go the extra mile, and all this before they even get past your resume header.
The tricks to crafting the ideal office manager resume objective or summary
Hiring managers have to make split second judgments about job applicants without ever meeting them. You have seconds to make a strong impression and show why you’re right for the job.
To get hiring managers to read your resume, you have to capture their attention.
An office manager resume objective or summary is your chance to do just that.
If you've got tons of work experience, start your office manager resume with a resume summary. As the name implies, a resume summary is a snapshot of your top achievements.
If you're a recent grad or new to the role, write up a resume objective. This objective statement should be limited to two or three sentences explaining what you are trying to accomplish and what you can contribute.
What's the problem here? This resume summary highlights generic office manager skills and uses buzzwords. It doesn't give much information to the reader, it doesn't highlight any accomplishments or results, and it doesn't in any way draw in the reader. In fact, it does the opposite.
Why is this one better? It clearly states how many years of experience you have, and in what kinds of environments. It also showcases your key accomplishment and how you made it happen.
Your office manager resume objective or summary should include:
- Only your professional experience
- Your most relevant strengths, skillset, and core competencies
- Notable accomplishments that you intend to repeat
- Results and numbers, where applicable
Make your office manager experience section pop
A great office manager can be the invisible force that holds an entire office together. But when it comes to getting hired, you absolutely have to quantify your impact and show the value you’ll bring.
When listing your previous jobs in the Work Experience section, use statements of activity.
It’s harder than just writing your responsibilities. However, doing this is probably the single most transformative change you can make to your office manager resume.
Here are two bullet points that follow that formula:
Now, see an example where the exact same job is discussed using language that focuses on responsibilities and vague accomplishments.
Simply phrasing the same job experience a bit differently makes all the difference.
What if you don’t have any office manager experience?
So, how are you supposed to get office-manager experience and boast it on your resume if you've never been an office manager?
Think. And dig.
Think about everything that you've done in the past. Think about clubs you've been a part of, initiatives and projects you started or joined at school, your hobbies, and even mandatory school/college group assignments.
List all the activities you did, and really go into details here. Chances are, you've done some office manager-type tasks before and you're not even aware of it. Then, select those that most closely match the job responsibilities of the job position you’re applying for.
- Prepared weekly agendas for team meetings. Commended by the team for efficiency and time-keeping.
- Handled all record keeping and oversaw the membership fees payments. Increased revenue by 30%.
What role should your education section play?
There aren’t any bachelor’s degrees in office management, so what if any education should you include? Should it be at the top or bottom of your resume? How about your graduation date and grades?
As a rule of thumb, your education should go at the top of your office manager resume if you know the hiring manager will recognize the name of your educational institution and be impressed; if you graduated within the past 3-5 years; or if your degree is particularly relevant to the office manager position (a business management degree would be great).
Of course, the education section will play a more important role if you've only just graduated. In that case, it's generally acceptable to include coursework, academic honors, scholarships, and other achievements if applicable.
Why and how to match your office manager resume skills to the job opening
Most resumes go through Applicant Tracking Systems which scan for keywords. An ATS will look through hundreds of resumes picking up on keywords and phrases that match the job spec given to them by employers.
Even when a human sees your resume, they’re going to be doing the same.
Good news is, you can use this to your advantage.
This is why it's imperative that you match your office manager resume skills to the job opening.
Read through the job description, pick out skills that are mentioned often and drop them in naturally, as well as similar words and phrases.
Just remember: keep it natural - don't try to forcibly stuff keywords in.
For example, if the office manager job opening includes the word 'budgeting', add that one in, as well as any related words like 'purchasing,' 'monitoring,' and 'payroll'.
What office manager technical skills make the difference?
As noted above, the most important skills are always the ones the job description asks for. But, there are still industry-wide office manager skills that can make a big difference.
Most office manager roles nowadays require a multitude of technical skills.
Hard skills or technical skills are teachable abilities that are easy to measure or quantify.
A word of caution, do not add a hard skill you are not competent in!
You can either list technical skills in their own resume section or incorporate them into your work experience bullet points. For example:
"Spearheaded transition from paper invoices and DOS-driven Peachtree to QuickBooks and Point of Sale system, training all employees in newly implemented technologies."
What about office manager resume soft skills?
Soft skills help demonstrate your ability to build relationships and work with others in a team setting.
These skills are subjective and harder to measure than technical skills, but no less important. When adding soft skills to an office manager resume, focus on how you were able to demonstrate these skills on the job.
If possible, back up your claims with examples.
For example, the statement below demonstrates team working skills.
"Cooperated with 3 other employees to plan and run a 200-person corporate retreat."
The following statements helps prove customer service skills, as well as the ability to handle multiple projects simultaneously.
"Answered 50+ calls per day while researching and resolving budget discrepancies."
The top 11 certifications to include on your office manager resume
While courses and workshops are great, they don't testify that you absorbed any of the information or gained any new skills. Certifications, on the other hand, usually involve some sort of testable or measurable component.
You usually have to prove you've absorbed something from your training before you earn your certification. This is what makes certifications a valuable addition to an office manager resume.
In addition to that, they help demonstrate your commitment to continued learning and professional development in the field. Certifications may give you an advantage over job competitors with similar backgrounds, and they could help you get started if you have no prior experience.
Choose certifications from recognized industry leaders and those certifications that contain relevant keywords such as "office" or "management" in the title.
What can 10 000+ office manager job descriptions and resumes teach you?
The best office manager resumes are precisely tailored to a specific job. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t improve yours by using data-based research.
We analyzed thousands of office manager job descriptions and resumes to better understand which skills were most in demand. Below, you can see how often common skills were listed in resumes and in job descriptions:
Other sections to consider
Consider adding a 'How I Spend My Day' section to your office manager resume.
Office managers usually handle a variety of tasks and juggle multiple projects. At times, it's hard to showcase that in a traditional one-page resume.
For a creative way to highlight your 'jack-of-all-trades' skills, create a "How I Spend My Day" pie chart. Infographics can breathe life into your resume, and our brains recall and process visual information much better than they do plain text.
Before doing this, however, determine whether an infographic would catch the eye of an employer you're trying to impress or simply turn them off.
How to include interests and personality on an office manager resume
While not always appropriate, strategically including interests and personality can create that “this person feels perfect” feel.
First, dig around to learn more about your potential employer. The more you know about an organization and its culture, the more you can tailor your interest section and your outreach in general, thus increasing the likelihood that you'll hear back from them.
Does the company project a laid back and fun vibe? If so, mimic that in your approach and think outside the box. Does the company project a more professional and traditional spirit? If so, keep your approach tamer.
Hiring managers are human too. Including interests in your office manager resume could help increase your likeability and make your resume more memorable in the sea of Average John resumes. So, if you're an avid porcelain teacup collector, you know what to do!
In summary, what makes an office manager resume effective?
- Stick to the basics: use bullet point highlights, readable fonts, and clean design.
- Effectively use the white space so that text is easy on the eyes to create a clean format that's easy to skim.
- Be specific and choose a handful (4-5) of relevant skills to highlight that have been mentioned in the job description already.
- Ensure a clear understanding of your top selling points at a glance.
- Add in a little bit of personality, and don't be afraid to showcase interests and hobbies. Do research on the employer first, though.
- Use keywords throughout the resume that match the job description.
- Focus on the results and impact of your work in the past and how it saved money, increased efficiency, or otherwise improved the business.