Resume Writing for IT Jobs: Where and How to List Your Technical Skills

When applying for IT positions, writing your resume can be very different to a resume prepared for other roles. Employers hiring in IT are looking for someone with skills in specific areas and therefore it is essential to include a section on your technical skills to increase your chances of an interview.

Here are some handy tips to remember where and how to include your technical skills in your resume.

Location is key

You should dedicate a section in your resume specifically for your technical skills and title it ‘Technical Skills’.  This should be prominent on the first page of your resume and should be the first or second section located just below your opening professional profile.

Honesty is the best policy

It is important to be honest about your skills. Although it may be tempting, you should not to exaggerate your skill level or experience. Most employers usually conduct a technical interview in conjunction with the normal interview where you will need to prove any skills you have claimed you are capable of. Being honest will mean you are the right person for that position and capable of fulfilling the role. It also saves you from tripping up on a question in an interview.

Keep it relevant

Take a look at the role you are applying for and tailor your list of skills to reflect the selection criteria. You will need to be willing to edit your resume for each individual role. Avoid listing skills and attributes that have no relevance to the job application or they will just clutter your resume. While most people would be impressed, listing every skill shows a broad range of knowledge and will only serve to take away from the relevant skills required for the role. You should list your skills so they are clear, precise and in a format that is easy to read. You may choose to list them in order of relevance or experience. This is really determined by what position you are applying for and what they have requested in the job advertisement.

Simplicity is best

It is important not to be over zealous, and don’t attempt to use gimmicks to make your resume stand out from the rest. While it can be tempting to use creative templates and add interesting colours and formats to your resume, it is more professional and will work to your advantage to keep it simple. The goal is that your resume is so clear and easy to read, any employer can instantly see that you are a potential candidate for the role.

The proof is in the pudding

When listing your technical skills, provide an explanation with each one to back your skills up. A simple sentence to explain where you used or developed each skill will show the employer real evidence of your capabilities. Some people also choose to rate themselves in each skill. If you do choose to do this it’s important to remember the above point about being honest and to use words to rate yourself; eg. novice, intermediate, proficient, and expert.

In conclusion, technical skills are vital for your resume and remember to keep them honest, relevant and easy to read. Keep in mind the goal is to convince employers that you can do what they need and do it well, not that you can do everything.

Are you looking for an IT job but struggling in the competitive job market? Find out more about the ACS IT Professional Year program or the Professional WIL Placement (Internship) Program and get your IT career kick-started today!

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