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We live in a world that’s always building, so it’s no surprise that the demand for construction employment is expected to grow 5% by 2029 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
If you want to land a role in this growing industry it’s necessary that you have a resume that sets you apart from the job competition. Without an outstanding resume you either won’t get hired or won’t get paid what you’re worth.
That’s why you should check out our writing tips below to make sure that your resume follows good professional advice to the tee.
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3 Tips for Writing Construction Resumes
1. Choose the right format for your resume
You don’t start construction on a building without a blueprint, nor should you start writing your resume without a plan.
A resume format is the first big decision you will make with your resume because the format determines the way in which its content is organized.
Pretty much all resumes are going to have the exact same five pieces: contact information, a professional summary or objective statement, work history, skills and education. The order in which you put those five sections is the resume format.
Depending on where you’re at in your career you should pick one of the main three resume formats: chronological, functional and combination.
Chronological formats work well for people with a lot of experience because the emphasis is placed on all the work experience you have and shows a career progression. Use this format if you’ve been in construction for more than five years.
But, if your career is just getting started, you should choose another format.
Functional formats put the emphasis on your skills instead of your work experience as a smart way to cover your inexperience. They’re your best bet if the construction industry is new to you.
A hybrid format is a combination of a functional and a chronological format that gives balanced weight to your work history and skills. A hybrid format is the best option for people with more than two years of experience but less than five.
Once you’ve selected the format for your resume, you can now focus on making sure that you nail every section.
2. Promote your skills
While every construction job might require a different specialty, some skills are in demand across the board.
It’s going to help employers notice if you include six to eight skills on your resume that best apply to what you bring to the table.
Sought-after skills across the construction industry include:
Also, take a very detailed look at the construction job posting or ad — the phrases and keywords are clues to exactly what the employer wants in a candidate. Try to echo back in your resume all the phrases that apply to your skill set.
3. Use a template to make sure your resume looks strong
A resume template is a tool created by a professional resume designer so that your resume looks great without any extra effort on your part.
All you have to do is pick one that you like.
Then, just input your personal information. Save it in your desired format and your resume is ready to send.
JobHero has a lot of resume templates that you’re welcome to use.
It also creates auto-suggested content based on the job title that you’re applying for to say things in the clearest way possible.
JobHero’s Resume Builder is like having a resume expert look over your shoulder to guide you step-by-step.
There’s no quicker or more assured way to create a resume that looks great and captures the attention of employers.
What should I put on my resume?
Like any resume, you’ll need the same five resume sections: contact information, professional summary or objective statement, skills, work history and education.
The focus of your resume, however, is going to be on your construction skills and work history.
You’re going to want to make sure that you catch a hiring manager’s eye by including as many hard numbers as you can in your resumes.
Including numbers serves both as an attention-grabber and gives a more concrete sense of what you’re capable of as an employee.
For instance, if you were a site foreman, don’t just say something about overseeing a crew to get jobs done on time. Include specific details in number form.
Here’s an example:
As you can see, this technique paints a much clearer picture of what kind of responsibilities you are capable of. It will help employers better assess whether or not you’re a good fit for their needs.
How do I list education on my resume?
Many roles in construction do not require degrees, especially entry-level jobs.
However, it’s nonetheless expected that you include an education section on your resume.
If you have graduated from trade school or college, it’s not customary to include your high school or anything prior on your resume.
However, if you have some higher education experience but haven’t graduated, it’s standard to list the years that you attended and include the high school that you graduated from.
It could look something like this:
Washburn Trade School – Plattville, WI – 2018-2020
Studying electrical engineering
Loganville Central High School – Loganville, WI, graduated
What kind of work experience should I put on a construction resume?
Try to keep all the work experience you include in a resume focused on construction jobs that you’ve held.
As much as you can, focus on the experience you have that would be the most similar to the role that you’re applying for.
If you don’t have loads of construction experience, try to keep the discussion of the work history that you do have focused on the more physically demanding tasks you had to perform or the ones that required mathematical or problem-solving skills.
The more relevant the work experience is to the specific role that you’re applying for, the more likely it is to benefit you.
How do I write a professional summary for my resume?
A professional summary is a short two-to-three sentence sales pitch that lives at the top of your resume. It’s important because it’s the first useful information that an employer reads about you.
So, the goal here is to make sure that you give the hiring manager something to get excited about in order to continue reading your resume.
Use engaging language that is chock-full of your best assets as a potential worker.
Here’s an example of a well-written professional summary for a woodworker:
“Experienced woodworker with 15+ years of experience in cabinet making, door hanging, installing trim and crown moulding who brings a fine attention to detail at every jobsite. My track record in completing tasks on-time has achieved goals for many clients and contractors.”
See how the language is active and uses as many keywords and skills in it as possible without over-stuffing?
That’s the ticket here. Keep your language active and engaging, and give an employer a great sense of what you bring to the table.
Should I include a cover letter with my construction resume?
Yes, even if it’s not specifically requested, include a cover letter when you submit your resume to a construction job.
Doing so will show your attention to detail and seriousness about the job. Not to mention, you won’t immediately get overlooked for the job candidates who took the effort to include one.
Furthermore, a resume works alongside your resume to add greater detail to your work history and allow a bit of your personality to come through.
JobHero features a library of great construction cover letter examples that you can use to get some ideas and build your own winning cover letter.