Tips for Accountants: It Starts with a Great Resume

During an accounting job search it is important to understand that hiring managers are like buyers researching a product. Evaluating resumes is the research phase. They gather as much relevant information as possible to determine who to call for an interview. When seeking a new accounting position, you should treat your resume like the sales material it is. If you want to get a chance in the interview chair, it starts with a great resume.

Start by Summing It Up

Include a summary at the top of the page that highlights your most important skills and concisely conveys who you are as a professional. 

For example: 

Results-oriented staff accountant with five years of experience preparing clear and accurate financial reports for executive-level management. Seeking a staff accounting position with room for growth.  

Keep Your Language Clear

While it is important to showcase your skills and how they align with a specific position, it is important to keep your language clear and concise. Arrange your points in short, bulleted phrases, and avoid high-level jargon.

Format Information Like a Funnel

Hiring managers always skim resumes to gauge a candidate’s fit for the position before performing a close read. After skimming, you want the hiring manager to say, “his is someone I’m interested in getting to know better.” Therefore, you want the most important details to be included on the first page. Sometimes, this means ordering your work experience by relevancy rather than chronologically. Think of it like a funnel, with the most important information at the top.

Don’t Stress About Length

Your resume should be as concise as possible while still telling the story of your career. If you’re just starting out and you’ve only held one accounting position since graduation, don’t stress about the length of your resume. List your most important contributions, but don’t get too wordy just to fill space. Conversely, if you’ve had multiple positions and have a longer resume, that’s also okay. Make sure to include the most relevant information and aim for no more than two pages.

Brag on Yourself

Job searches are competitions with only one winner. Your resume is a hiring manager’s first introduction to who you are as an accountant, so don’t shy away from tooting your own horn. Hiring managers need to know what makes you a valuable team member, so be sure to quantify your achievements and list any awards and accolades you’ve collected from previous employers. Employers are looking for rock stars, so always go the extra mile.


Posted by Rebecca Plough at 10:06 AM
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