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How To Write A Killer Resume Headline That Catches Attention

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Do you want to grab a hiring manager’s attention with your resume?

We all know that recruiters and hiring managers spend six to seven seconds reading a resume, at most.

If you hope to get the job, you must capture their attention within that time frame. A captivating resume headline ensures you catch the attention of a hiring manager or recruiter.

Here’s how to write one that will catch the attention, right away.

What Is A Resume Headline?

A resume headline is a concise statement located under your name and contact information at the top of a resume. It highlights your professional identity and strengths, allowing a recruiter to immediately note what value you can bring to the company.

Resume Headline vs Resume Title

While some people use resume title and headline interchangeably, there is a slight difference between the two.

A resume title is your professional title. It usually appears alongside your name on your resume or professional profile. For example, Project manager, Copywriter, or Android Developer.

On the other hand, a resume headline is a summary statement of your experience, skills, and accolades. It appears under your name and provides additional information about your professional title. A resume headline summarizes your resume.

A resume headline and a resume title can add or detract from a resume depending on how they’re written.

Why is a Resume Headline Important?

While it may seem unnecessary, a resume headline is almost as important as an outline. It has many advantages and, if well-written, has no downsides.

A resume headline is crucial because it:

1. Introduces Your Skills and Experience

A resume headline is an introduction to your resume. Without it, a recruiter has to guess what experience you have or skills you can bring to the organization.

However, when you include a resume headline, you allow a hiring manager or recruiter to anticipate your skills and expertise.

2. Engages Readers Right Off the Bat

Recruiters and hiring managers do not spend minutes reading through every line of your resume. They receive hundreds, even thousands, of applications per job listing, therefore, you need to capture their attention from the first line.

A good resume headline enables you to hook the reader, ensuring they register your valuable skills and consider you for the job.

3. Can Help Your Resume Stand Out

Your resume is one of the many submitted for consideration for a given role at a company.

An exceptional headline for your resume ensures you stand out from the competition. It highlights your skills, experience, and accomplishments relevant to the job right off the bat, which can oftentimes allow you to set your best professional foot forward and make a great first impression.

4. Gives Your Career a Unifying Theme

It can be hard to unify your resume if you have switched career fields. Using a resume headline is the perfect way to highlight transferable skills if you are applying for a role in a different industry.

It can also summarize your relevant accomplishments so far, allowing your career to appear directed and organized, even if you were haphazardly picking jobs before.  

What is a Good Headline for a Resume?

A great headline for a resume focuses on relevant skills and expertise. It immediately showcases the value you bring to an organization in a specific role. It is not vague but provides precise detail of your professional life.

Here are a few examples of exceptional resume headlines:

Resume Headline Sample

  • Accomplished software engineer with 2 years of experience creating and managing databases.
  • Special ed teacher with 10 years of experience and crisis prevention protocols

Resume Headline for Students

  • Dean’s List and Academic Excellence award winner with extensive leadership experience and effective communication skills.
  • Business Administration student adept at facilitating inter-departmental collaboration and maintaining organized records.

Resume Headline Examples for Entry-Level

  • Industrious Marketing and Communications graduate with social media management and content development skills.
  • Innovative Computer Engineering student with experience building AI software to ensure secure financial transactions.

Resume Headline Examples for Customer Service

  • Bilingual customer service representative with 3 years of experience maintaining a 97% customer satisfaction rate.
  • Enthusiastic retail associate with 4+ years of experience building customer engagement and resolving intricate customer queries.

Resume Headline for Manager

  • Goal-oriented Senior Marketing Manager with 8 years of experience managing worldwide online marketing campaigns.
  • Bar and Restaurant Manager with 5+ years of experience overseeing high-traffic restaurants with 30+ staff members.

How to Write a Resume Headline

Writing a resume headline can be tricky, especially if you don’t know your professional strengths.

A resume writing service makes this easy, ensuring you have a captivating headline for your resume in minutes. However, you can easily craft your resume headline if you already have a resume by following these tips:

1. Keep it Short and Sweet

Remember that a resume headline is different from an objective statement or resume summary. A resume headline must be a brief, one-line statement.

Immediately get to the point and avoid using filler words or buzzwords like hardworking. Focus on achievements, awards, or years of experience. Keep your headline concise without compromising key professional details.

2. Talk About Your Experience and Career

The resume headline is the place to focus on monumental achievements. Highlight significant accomplishments and awards and talk about your years of experience.

It doesn’t matter if you’re just stepping into the job market or have decades of experience, pick any significant professional or academic achievement and highlight it.

3. Use Keywords

Use the job listing to find what specific qualifications the company wants a potential candidate to have. The job requirements and preferred qualifications hold keywords you should use in your resume headline.

Using keywords makes your resume ATS-friendly, ensuring your resume is reviewed by a hiring manager.

4. Put it at the Top of Your Resume

Once you have crafted your resume headline, place it at the top of your resume. A resume headline has to be after your name and contact information to catch a recruiter’s eye. If you place it anywhere else, it is useless and adds length to your resume without adding value.

5. Try a Resume Headline Generator

You can use a resume headline generator if you have already completed your resume. The generator allows you to upload or copy-and-paste your resume and offers headline suggestions.

It is fast, efficient, and gives you several resume headline options. It is perfect if you struggle to find the best parts of your resume.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some commonly asked questions on resume headlines from across the internet:

What is a Powerful Headline?

A powerful resume headline is a strong statement that immediately grabs a recruiter’s attention. It starts with exceptional achievements and uses impactful action verbs.

What is a One-Line Headline?

A one-line resume headline is a brief phrase summarizing a resume. It highlights key accomplishments and skills relevant to the company on only one line.

Wrapping Up

A compelling resume headline is a crucial part of any resume. It summarizes your resume, sets you apart from the competition, introduces your skills, and engages the recruiter.

When writing your resume headline, ensure you use keywords from the job listing and highlight your qualifications and significant accomplishments. Keep it short, no more than a line, to ensure it truly captures the attention of a hiring manager.

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