To sell yourself to any employer, a strong, relevant resume is key. When transitioning to a completely different industry, it can be difficult to figure out how to show the employer that your previous experience is valuable. Luckily, you have a few different options.
Play Up Your Education.
If you decided to go back to school for a different field, great! Show the employer your new degree, courses, relevant projects, and new skills.
Focus on Transferable Skills.
Transferable skills are skills that apply to any job, like being a good communicator or being able to work well in a team. When possible, try to be specific or back up general skills with specific items. You can use transferable skills to show how your previous employment has given you a background that you can use in your new field.
Highlight Relevant Experience.
Any relevant experience counts! Whether you have volunteered, interned, or otherwise participated in your field, be sure to emphasize that on the resume. Expand upon these sections! In some cases, there may be ways to pull forward relevant experience from the past.
De-Emphasize Previous Industry Terminology.
In your previous experience, try to use terminology that is more general or, better still, is related to the industry you are transitioning to. This helps create the link between your old experience and your new job goal.
Remove or Limit Older Experience.
If you feel comfortable and the jobs are no longer relevant, you can delete the oldest jobs from your resume if they are 10 or 20 years ago. Or, if you can transition some of the experience, leave it on, but limit the number of bullet points you keep for that position. A third solution is to wrap up the previous history in a paragraph or brief list, once again limiting irrelevant information. Be careful with this one – it’s best to ask an expert before cutting history!
Transitioning your experience to a new field can be challenging, but once you think outside the box, you will be amazed what experience can be made into a relevant background!