Developing Skills-Based Impact Statements

Using skills-based work statements rather than activity- or task-based statements improves the effectiveness of a resume.  The difference between these types of statements is illustrated below, along with a method for developing skills-based statements.

Activity-based statement
  • Served as a testing intern
Tasks-based statements
  • Prepared specimens for testing.
  • Tested the compression strength of concrete samples.
  • Documented test results.
  • Attended group meetings.
Skills-based, impact statements (most effective!)
  • Developed an efficient procedure that reduced test specimen preparation time by ten percent.
  • Followed industry standard practices to test the compression strength of concrete and obtain accurate and repeatable data.
  • Analyzed test data and organized results in an easy to interpret report.
  • Participated in team meetings by contributing ideas and reporting on progress.

Emphasizing skills through experiences is much more effective than simply listing them in a skills section.


Method for Developing Skills-Based Impact Statements

    1. Identify the task that was performed: _______________________________________________
      (Examples: prepared specimens for testing; ran cash register)

    2. Identify the skills that were used to complete the task:__________________________________
      (Examples: planning and procedure development; customer service)

    3. Identify the positive impact of the task that emphasizes the successful performance of your skills: __________________________________________________
      (Examples: prep time was cut by ten percent; encouraged repeat business)

    4. Develop a statement that highlights one or two of the skills you used while telling what was done and the impact it had: _______________________________________________________
      (Examples: Developed an efficient procedure that reduced test specimen preparation time by ten percent; Provided efficient and friendly customer service to encourage repeat business)

Develop your statement to highlight as many of your valuable skills as possible.  A skill can be highlighted more than once but it is better to highlight different skills.

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Step 1: Understanding Employers and the College Recruiting Process

Step 2: Determine Career Goals and Skillset

Step 3: Identify Preliminary Target Employers and Industries

Step 4: Develop Effective Marketing Materials

Step 5: Search for Specific Employment and Research Target Companies