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Just as the movies, television shows or radio inserts you produce are a compilation of compelling scenes, your resume should be an engaging story that sheds light on who you are, what you’ve done, and what you have to offer.
To help you begin the process of writing your producer resume, research well-written producer resume samples to see the kind of information most often included, how best to present that information, and even what not to do.
In the content below, you’ll find a step-by-step guide that identifies the recommended sections of a resume, how to approach writing them, and the various formatting options you have.
2What to Include in a Producer Resume
Keep in mind that writing a resume is not a fill-in-the-blank exercise.
While there are numerous similarities in the many producer job sectors, there are differences as well that will make your resume unique. Your experience, education, and career path will all determine how you’ll construct your resume and what it will look like.
By reviewing other producer resume samples and approaching the writing of yours one section at a time, you’ll end up creating a unique image of who you are and what you can do.
Differences in background aside, there are certain recommended resume sections that employers will be on the lookout for. How you include these sections and what you include in each depends on which resume format you choose. The three format options are: chronological, functional, and combination.
In the chronological resume style, which is used most often by those with a clear career path and no employment gaps, there are five basic sections:
- Contact info (name/phone/email)
- Resume summary
- Work experience
The functional style is well-suited to individuals who may be changing their career path, have employment gaps, or have worked independently. The recommended sections are the same except for the addition of an “Accomplishments” section, which will be explained further on. The sections are:
- Contact info (name/phone/email)
- Resume summary
- Accomplishments (new section)
- Work experience
If you find these formats too restrictive, you can create your own combination style. There’s no right or wrong format choice.
3How to Write the Producer Resume Summary Statement
Think of your resume summary as the opening lines of a screenplay or TV script. You’ve probably made snap judgments on a piece of work based on whether or not you felt compelled to read more. The same is true of your resume summary. It’s the opening scene, so make it count.
Your summary should be 2-3 sentences that show a potential employer how you work. As you construct these very important sentences, try to show the problem, your solution, and the result. If at all possible, show that the results were quantifiable and had a positive impact on the project.
If you view your resume summary as a first-person story with the first-person pronouns removed, you’ll end up with concise sentence fragments, which, in this case, are preferred over complete sentences.
Take a look at the resume summary statements in the producer resume samples you’ve identified. What works and what doesn’t?
Here are two additional summary examples for your consideration:
As an independent supervising producer on a documentary film about folk art in the Appalachians, maintained oversight and approval of locations, script changes, technical resources and key staff and crew. Production came in on time and within budget and was entered in the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival where it won the President’s Award.
Music producer with over 10 years experience in the industry and a knack for identifying raw talent; have produced 12 musical works that have made it to the Billboard Top 100 List. Assisted audio engineers with the mixing and sound conversion to create quality tracks. Negotiated contracts with talent, produced the work, and stayed within budget.
4How to Write the Producer Work Experience Section
The work experience section will differ based on the resume style you choose, so if you haven’t decided yet, now’s the time. For a reminder of the different styles, refer to your producer resume samples.
If you’re following the chronological resume format, create a list of employers with the most recent first. Each job will be a sub-heading that includes:
Period of employment
Beneath each, write 3-5 bullet points that emphasize the proven skills you can bring to the organization.
For those who have worked on independent projects, this format may not fit your experience, so the functional format may work better for you. With this approach, you’ll merely list your relevant past jobs and the company for which your worked. You don’t need to list your dates of employment and your don’t need to go into detail about the responsibilities that came with each role.
Instead, and as mentioned earlier, you’ll add an “Accomplishments” section where you can list 6-8 accomplishments that match the employer’s needs and transcend one particular role.
Some tips on presenting your accomplishments in bullet-point form include:
- Always try to mirror the employer’s needs so they see you as the ideal candidate.
- The whole idea of using bullet points is to be concise, so present one accomplishment per bullet, and one sentence per accomplishment.
- If you’re in the movie or TV industries, you understand the importance of “show, don’t tell,” so make sure you use action verbs to describe what you’ve done.
If you prefer, you can create a combination style resume, but be careful not to repeat your accomplishments from one section to another. Every word should present new information.
5Action Verbs to Include in Your Producer Work Experience Section
In the visual arts, it’s well understood that action verbs paint a picture. Since you want a potential employer to be able to visualize you doing the job, consider using some of the following industry-specific action verbs:
Quickly scan the producer resume samples for more verbs and ideas that fit your experience.
6How to Write the Producer Skills Section
Whether you’re a film, TV, or music producer, you probably have a list of both technical and interpersonal skills that has made you successful. The first thing you should do is look at the job description to determine the skills the employer is looking for. Those are the ones you want to list first, so they recognize you as qualified for the position at hand.
You should also refer to the producer resume samples to see the various ways skills can be presented. While most can be categorized by technical or interpersonal/personal, don’t feel restricted by just these two. You know best what you do best.
Examples of how to list skills include:
- Approve location and equipment logistics for shooting
- Oversight and final word on sounds, music, and editing of final film
- Determine budget based on factors like casting, film locations, and script
- Ability to identify promising material and obtain rights
- Coordinate work of individual producers to achieve unified end result
- Responsible for crew management
- Strong time management skills
Throughout your entire resume, continue to list your attributes in the priority order the employer has identified in their requirements.
7How to Write the Producer Education Section
At the top-tier level of producer positions, like executive producer, individuals generally have a bachelor’s degree or even a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree. Lower level positions may not require a degree, but listing any formal education you have will certainly be advantageous.
You can refer to the producer resume samples to see how educational credentials are presented, but generally, if you’re listing your degree, you only need to list the school attended/school location/degree obtained.
Education along with experience is the best combination, but for entry-level positions, certificate programs are well worth mentioning. Studies in film history, editing, screenwriting, and the film-making process are important to acknowledge in the education section as well.
You may want to include a sub-heading for memberships, associations, and guilds that, depending on your industry sector, might include organizations such as:
- Association of Music Producers (AMP)
- National Association of Record Industry Professionals
- Association of Independent Video and Filmmakers
- American Cinematheque
This is also the section where you can provide a link to IMDb mentions as producer on films for which you received on-screen credit.
8Should I Include References in my Producer Resume
While references are important, there is no need to take up valuable resume space with them. You won’t see them included in any of the producer resume samples you’re referencing. By stating that “references are available upon request,” you put yourself in the advantageous position of knowing the employer is interested, because they’ll request your list.
Then, you can give your references a heads-up to expect a call, and you can ask them to let you know when they’ve been contacted. You’ll even have an opportunity to find out what kind of questions were asked, which can provide you with valuable inside information in your job search.
When choosing references, it’s important to list producers or directors with whom you’ve worked. If you’re hoping to be an executive producer, having someone in that position as a reference will go a long way. You should have 3-4 references.
9Producer Resume Fails: Mistakes to Avoid
- While the film and music industries are viewed as creative, if you’ve worked in your sector for any amount of time, it should be clear that at its core, entertainment is a business. It follows that your resume should reflect skills that support the business first. If you get too creative in your presentation, the potential employer may see you more as imaginative rather than productive. By its very name, a producer is supposed to be productive.
- If you’ve read scripts to consider for production that are littered with typos and misspellings, you’re less impressed with the work, even if the idea is decent. Don’t let mistakes in your resume detract from your professionalism. Proofread more than once, and if possible, have a friend read it as well.
- Be aware of keywords, and use them often. Keywords are not industry buzz words, they’re the actual words used in a job description to identify requirements. If the studio you’re applying to uses an applicant tracking system (ATS), it will be looking for the keywords, and if they’re not there, your resume won’t make it to the potential employer’s desk. Even if they don’t use an ATS, the actual human being reading your resume will be looking for those same keywords.
- Even if you were treated poorly on a previous project, don’t even hint that a previous employer was unfair or unimaginative. A potential employer doesn’t want to hire someone who already presents a negative outlook.
10Job Prospects in the TV/Film Producer Industry
The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects the growth rate for all occupations to be 7 percent for the period 2014 to 2024.For the same time period, the employment projection for producers and directorsis estimated to be 9 percent, which is slightly above the average.
Growth in the motion picture and video industry is expected to stem from a number of sources, including strong public demand for more movies and TV shows, an increased demand from foreign audiences, and an increasing appetite for reality shows.Changing delivery methods via mobile devices and online viewing may lead to more opportunities in the future, but there will be intense competition for jobs in this field.
Producers with good business skills will have an advantage.Theatrical producers’ employment will depend largely on funding, which is more stable in large theaters in big cities.While the Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn’t offer specific statistics on music producer employment projections, they do list entertainers and performers, sports and related workers are expected to grow at 6 percent.