Our complete guide to understanding what career objective statements are for on your resume, and how to write one yourself.
Career objective statements are one of the most overlooked pieces of otherwise stellar resumes.
It’s not that every resume out there needs one — it’s just that the ones that really do need them typically never think to include them.
That can be a real issue when someone goes to read your resume, gets distracted, and moves onto the next person halfway through.
You want your resume to stand out and be as clear as possible — so if that’s something you struggle with, you’re going to want to add a resume statement.
But just how do you go about doing so?
So what is a career objective?
Simply put, it’s a statement of the outcome you’d like to occur as a result of your turning in your application.
You might be thinking, “But all I want is to get the job.”
Well, yeah. Career objective statements are pretty much that simple.
Career objectives, traditionally, were just you telling a hiring manager of your long-term goals and what you hoped to get out of applying for the job, but doing so in a manner that was easy to read and remember.
They want to be able to tell who you are at a glance, and to be able to recall most of the important things about you at a moment’s notice should they need to remember why they’re reading your resume, or even talking to you in person.
Of course, even knowing all of this, the process of writing a career objective yourself can be a little more involved.
You see, employers these days don’t necessarily just want to know what YOU want anymore.
They’re a bit more interested in getting whatever it is that THEY want.
Think about it — they’re going to be looking through dozens, possibly hundreds, of resumes, and the first thing they’re going to see on each one of them is the career objective.
Assuming that it’s actually, you know, there, this is the main area that a recruiter is going to be scanning in order to figure out if they want to hire you.
Here are some things to keep in mind while writing your career objective statement:
You want to make sure that more than anything, your objective statement filters your real goals through the worldview you believe that the company you’re applying to is going to be looking at your resume through.
To that end, we have a few ideas of what career objective statements for the same position could look like depending on the sort of workplace that you’re applying to:
- (When applying to a particularly “green” company) — “Seeking a position with a ecologically-conscious company in order to enhance my knowledge of how my job can be applied to fields related to environmental awareness.”
- (When applying to a job that involves a lot of puzzle solving) — “To better learn how my problem-solving skills can be applied more specifically within my field.”
- (When applying to a workplace with a major team focus, or when applying to an entry level position) — “To enhance my occupational skills within the context of a larger, dynamic team structure.”
That’s all for this one! Just keep in mind:
When deciding whether or not you should include a resume objective in the first place, don’t forget about your third option:
The resume summary statement.
Rather than talk about what you hope to accomplish with your resume, it can often be more helpful to simply summarize the resume itself in a few short sentences.
It’s important to note that these options aren’t interchangeable and serve different purposes, but you’ll find that by going through resumes related to your industry, you should be able to see what the expectation is for your job in particular.
Best of luck! Here are some other links to help you on your way:
Zippia empowers you to make the correct career decisions, not just find your next job.
You can access millions of others' career paths with the Career Graph to help you identify what skills and experiences you need to achieve your career goals. And when you're ready to take the next step in your career, you can research jobs and really understand the implications for your career aspirations.