Guide to Building Resume Accomplishment Statements

Posted by Nancy Gober

AccomplishmentsYour cleared resume should show what you achieved in each position vs. a laundry list of responsibilities you’ve held and duties you performed.

Most of you have probably heard this before. Yet we still see a surprising number of cleared job seekers with long, detailed paragraphs of responsibilities. It’s a pet peeve of both recruiters and hiring managers. Why? Because it makes it more difficult for them to quickly scan through to determine if you are a viable candidate.

If you’re guilty as charged, please use this guide to build powerful Accomplishment Statements to improve your resume.

An added bonus: Identifying your accomplishments and writing them down builds your interviewing skills as well. Having thought through your accomplishments, you’ll be better able to articulate in interviews how you made a difference for your previous employers.

How to get started writing Accomplishment Statements

Writing accomplishment statements appears harder than it actually is. Why? Knowing what you’ve accomplished isn’t always obvious.

To help you get started think about the positions you’ve held and duties you performed. As you identify each duty you performed, ask yourself:

1. In performing each duty, what action did you take and what was the result?

2. What was the outcome for your company? For instance, what was achieved in savings, revenues, problems solved, efficiencies, increased productivity or profit, or improvement of some kind, etc.?

3. What was the outcome for you? Personal outcomes can include increases in responsibility, promotion, awards.

4. Quantify and qualify your results to the extent possible. Not every result can be quantified, but they can be qualified. And, more results can be quantified than you might think! While you might not know an exact $$ figure or number for a contribution you made, you might be able to arrive at a calculated estimate if you have some numerical data or recollections to base your estimate on.

A tip to get started is to ask yourself: What things am I proud of in my career, in the positions I’ve held? Write down your initial thoughts.

How-To-Formula for developing Accomplishment Statements

Follow this formula to craft your Accomplishment Statements:

1. Start by listing a duty that you performed in a job you held. Write it down.

2. At the end of the phrase listing the duty, write the words: “resulting in ___________.”

3. Ask yourself what did the company, customer, my department, I, etc. get as a result of my performing that duty or task.

So the formula is actually simple: Duty performed, Resulting in Benefit or Accomplishment

Re-engineered reporting systems, resulting in reduction of timelines by 50%

You can omit “resulting in”:

Re-engineered reporting system, reducing timelines by 50%

Examples of Accomplishment Statements

Provided financial analysis of operating costs, which resulted in reducing insurance costs $75,000 and in a refund of approximately $30,000

Streamlined customer complaint reporting system, increasing accuracy and timeliness, and reducing labor costs (add the $ savings if you know it).

Nominated for Chairman’s Award for work done on _______________ .

Finally, remember to customize each resume you send, selecting those duties and accomplishments that are relevant to the position for which you are applying.

Using this method you can turn a resume which simply lists duties you have performed into a results-oriented, accomplishments-based resume. That will get an employers’ attention by showing not only what you did, but how you added value and contributed to the employer’s success!

nancy goberNancy Gober is a career strategist who has helped thousands of job seekers find employment. She’s also been a popular resume reviewer at our Cleared Job Fairs. You may reach Nancy via email at [email protected].


  • Nancy Gober

    Nancy Gober is a career strategist who has helped thousands of job seekers find employment, and the author of “Jobs Are Not Found Sitting at the Computer.” You may reach Nancy via email at [email protected].

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, April 02, 2014 7:00 am

3 thoughts on “Guide to Building Resume Accomplishment Statements”

  1. I am so glad that you found the article useful and timely for your needs. I’d be interested to hear the outcome. Best of luck in your job search and career. Nancy

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