Resume Objective: Writing Tips and Examples

CAD Engineer Resume Objective Example

A great resume starts with a compelling resume objective statement. In two to three sentences, it outlines in a unique and compelling way your training and skills and any relevant work experience. Learn when and how to write a standout career objective that will fit with your career situation and get you noticed by recruiters and hiring managers.

What’s a resume objective?

A resume objective statement or career objective allows you to outline your professional goals and concisely include relevant skills information. This is a great way to help show employers that you have the skills and experience for the role — which can be tricky if you have limited work experience — and what you would bring to the table.

Even though it’s better recognized, a professional summary focuses more on experience and specific skills. At the same time, a resume objective statement tells a potential employer about your career goals and overall intentions.

Who should use a resume objective?

Resume objective versus professional summary

Almost all resumes require an introductory section that tells a hiring manager who you are and what skills you will bring to the position if hired. Not everyone needs to use an objective statement, but it is great for career changers and those getting back into the workforce. If a resume objective statement doesn’t fit your situation, you can instead include a professional summary that could more closely align with job seekers that have a lot of industry experience.

Resume Objectives:

  • Two to three sentences long
  • Mention goals at new job/opportunity and a desire to gain experience.
  • Focus on overall skills and key soft skills.
  • Outline what you can bring to the new job/industry.

Resume Summaries:

  • Four to five sentences long
  • Highlight previous experiences in the industry.
  • Focus on specific skills from the industry and referenced in the job description.
  • Expand on background information.

When to use a resume objective over a summary?

  • When changing careers.
  • If you have no paid work experience.
  • As a recent graduate seeking an entry-level position.
  • If you are a current high school or college student.

How to write a resume objective

If you have determined that a resume objective is appropriate for your resume, these are the four critical elements that should be the base of your career objective:

Resume Objective Anatomy Sample

  • The job title.

    Mention the position to which you are applying.

  • Keywords from the job description.

    Study the job description to determine which critical skills and experiences to include.

  • Relevant education, skills and training.

    If you are pursuing but haven’t yet completed a degree or professional certification, mention it in the resume objective and make a note of when you anticipate finishing.

  • Transferable skills related to the role.

    Even if you are applying for your first job, you likely have skills that you have gleaned through school, internships or volunteering that will apply in the workplace, such as leadership experience or relevant computer skills.

Resume objective examples for different career scenarios

A good resume objective is a very specific, targeted way to let a potential employer know that your experiences would make you a great fit for the role. The resume objective samples below cover a variety of career scenarios to help you craft your own objective statement.

Law Enforcement Career Change Resume Objective Example

Change of career

Resume objective: Former law enforcement officer looking to capitalize on conflict-resolution and communication skills in a new security guard position. Decisive, empathetic and physically fit. Able to employ well-honed firearms and driving skills if necessary.

CUSTOMIZE THIS RESUME
Truck Driver Reentering Work Fuctional Resume Sample

Reentering the workforce

Resume objective: Seasoned, CDL-carrying transportation professional seeking long-haul truck driver position. Offering over two years of freight transport experience and an additional eight years of bus and van-driving experience. Clean driving record with full-liability insurance coverage.

CUSTOMIZE THIS RESUME
Entry Level Administrative Assistant Resume Objective Example

No experience

Resume objective: Recent college graduate in search of an entry-level administrative assistant role. Well-spoken, cheerful and motivated to provide clients with stellar customer service and co-workers with top-notch clerical support.

CUSTOMIZE THIS RESUME
Restaurant Hostess No Experience High School Qualified Resume Example

College students and recent graduates

Resume objective: Responsible college sophomore looking to make use of customer service skills in a summertime server job. Hard worker with a friendly demeanor. Currently holds an up-to-date food handler’s license.

CUSTOMIZE THIS RESUME
High School Qualified Front Receptionist Resume Objective Sample

High school students

Resume objective: Motivated high school senior seeks restaurant host or other front-of-house role. Possesses excellent communication skills and a friendly personality. CPR and first-aid certified.

CUSTOMIZE THIS RESUME

Resume objective examples by job title

Customizing your resume objective to match a job description is a critical step. Study our resume objective examples below and use our library of more than 700 examples to craft an objective statement that works best for you.

Administrative assistant:

Recent graduate and extremely devoted individual with a stellar background in scheduling appointments as an administrative assistant.

Office assistant:

Detail-oriented and capable professional with three years of reception experience ready to provide administrative assistance in a fast-paced work environment. Adept at organizing calendars and managing detailed schedules. Conscientious and communicative. Proficient with basic office equipment and MS Office software.

Civil engineer:

Highly skilled and knowledgeable civil engineer with a strong record of sound and safe public works construction projects. Adept at coordinating with building and engineering professionals for every project stage. Strong multitasker with exceptional skills and capable of functioning in a high-pressure environment.

Construction general laborer:

Dedicated general laborer seeking to move into a construction position requiring materials expertise and carpentry knowledge. High level of accuracy and attention to detail. Strong understanding of OSHA standards in a team-oriented workplace. Skilled machine operator with solid blueprint comprehension.

Pharmacist:

Recent graduate with a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of North Carolina. Seeking full-time pharmacist role in a hospital or clinic setting. Deep understanding of medicine, human health, and how pharmacology can advance human health and health systems.

Restaurant server:

Seeking an entry-level position as a server using knowledge of food preparation and people skills to provide customers with an exceptionally positive experience.

Medical assistant:

Accomplished customer support professional practiced at addressing all facets of business office needs, including file and document management. Seeking to develop research experience and continue to flourish in a medical environment.

Technical support specialist:

Customer service-focused technical support specialist with experience in help desk and “break-fix” environments. Highly adept in systems analysis, diagnostics and troubleshooting.

VIEW ALL RESUME OBJECTIVES

3 do’s and don’ts for writing a resume objective

  • Do

    Do state your professional goals.

  • Don’t

    Don’t write in the first person.

  • Do

    Do mention your experience level — if you are new to the workforce, that’s OK.

  • Don’t

    Don’t forget to list your relevant skills.

  • Do

    Do explain why you are qualified for the job, even if you have limited experience.

  • Don’t

    Don’t forget to personalize your resume objective for each role.

Resume resources

Resume objective FAQ

What can I put on my resume instead of an objective?

Instead of an objective, you can have a professional summary section at the top of your resume.
A professional summary is three to five sentences long and best for job seekers that have a lot of particular field information or a wealth of industry experience to fill out in key sentences.

Do resumes need an objective?

Not all resumes need an objective statement, but they do require an introductory section that tells a hiring manager who you are. An objective statement can be a great choice if you are targeting a specific position, changing careers or don’t have a lot of direct work experience. However, just like a resume summary, it should still be specific and highlight why you stand out from the other applicants in terms of fulfilling the company’s needs.

How do I write a good objective for a resume?

Your resume objective should be a very short, specific and targeted way to show your skill set. The two- to three-sentence statement you craft for your objective statement will break out of the generic and be customized to your relevant career experiences. When crafting your statement, keep in mind that you are expressing how you will add value to the company thanks to your transferable skills or fresh industry ideas, so make sure you tailor this section to the job you are applying for.

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