The Military to Civilian Resume

When you leave the military and begin a civilian job search, you’ll find that you need to learn to be a civilian all over again. When witing your resume you’ll find it’s no different. You can’t use military language in your resume if you want civilian employers to understand it. Writing a military to civilian resume can be difficult.Military to Civilian resumes should be written the same way you write a traditional resume. When you sit down to write your  resume, put down on paper all of your skills and experiences including performance evaluations, training certificates or records, copies of awards or citations received, and other relevant tests, exams, and positions. This should include everything from basic training up to discharge or retirement, IF it is relevant to the job announcement that you’re applying to.This is where military to civilian resume writing can get tricky. Once you have a list of everything you’ve done that’s relevant to the job you seek, you need to translate those achievements and experiences from military jargon into everyday civilian business English. You don’t want to use military terminology or acronyms; instead you should spell everything out so that there is no doubt in your abilities for the hiring manager. There are hundreds of military positions that can be transferred to civilian jobs, as long as you can make the connections between the skills you acquired while serving and the need for those skills in a public sector job. Don’t assume that if you list something from your military career that the employer will be able to translate it to how it relates to their needs. They don’t have that kind of time. You need to spell out the details for them, so they get a clear picture of why they should hire you.The expanse of your military experience will also influence the style in which your military resume is written. Usually it is best to supply actual experience (work or otherwise) first, then education, followed by awards and commendations in a separate list. The employer doesn’t need every detail of everything you did while in service, they simply need to know the elements of your military career that are relevant to the position they’re offering. For example, if you were in front lines combat, or if you were responsible for enemy capture, that’s not going to be relevant to a civilian career. Additionally, no one wants to hear about the gory details of war, so just leave it out of your resume. You can state that you were in combat on your resume, but don’t go into detail.

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