Technology Resumes for Project Management Professionals present a unique set of challenges, particularly if you've been in a role with multiple simultaneous projects, or a number of (relatively) short-term initiatives. The tendency to want to include everything is understandable - but can be a strategic mistake. As an IT Resume Writer, I've had client resumes cross my desk that are 6, 8, or even 10 pages long - and that's just not a good idea.
In this blog I'll address long tenure consulting or project management gigs. I'll discuss best practices for technology resumes for independent consultants future blog.
1) Order the Projects by Results:
It's always a good idea to put the "wow" achievements first - in any technology resume. In a project based career, this means highlighting the initiatives that produced major results - for your firm, and for the client. Think about which projects have produced the greatest business value - and lead with those. This will immediately create the impression of achievement that you need to make your resume stand out in the hiring authority's mind.
2) Omit Similar Projects:
In any PM career, many projects are more or less similar. Pick the most important project demonstrating a given skill set, and omit the rest. Reading through 5, 10, or more nearly identical projects will do little beyond try the reader's patience. Trust me. As a former recruiter, that's not a great idea with a resume.
3) Use the CAR Format:
The CAR Format - Challenge, Action, Results can be a great way to break up a complex, technical PM resume, and highlight the main points of each initiative. Think about the specific challenge for each project - increasing efficiency, cutting cost, decreasing time to market, for example. Then discuss your specific actions to address that challenge. Finally, bullet the results, and (if possible) quantify what the project delivered.
4) Don't Date the Projects within one Position:
Often, people assume that in a chronological resume, projects must be presented in reverse chronological order, with dates for each. But it's really not necessary. The chronology you need is already there for the actual jobs. This gives flexibility to position the projects most effectively.
5) Use Formatting to Clarify Projects:
This can often be as simple as indenting project paragraphs to make projects visually clear to the reader. But whatever approach you use, be sure to make the projects stand out as separate initiatives in one position.
I hope these approaches help in crafting your PM technology resume. As always, please email a copy of your existing resume to firstname.lastname@example.org for an initial resume review!