Objective or Profile?

Are you ready to leave academia and take your first step into industry? Likely, you already know that your scientific resume should show off the skills you would bring to a potential employer. But what about an “Objective” statement, such as “Seeking a position at a leading biopharmaceutical company,” or “To obtain an analytical chemistry position”?

Did you know that objectives tend to screen you out of positions, not in.

For example, the company may not think the position fits what you want (for instance, they are a startup—not a leading—biopharmaceutical company), or the company has a position that matches your skills, but passes on you because it does not match your goal (i.e., it is a bioanalytical position, not an analytical position).

So, if you don’t use an Objective Statement, what should you use? We suggest a Profile or Summary. Think of it as an “abstract” of you, similar to that of a scientific paper which gives the reader a summary of what they will read in more detail later in the document. Your profile summarizes who you are–what your expertise is, where you are knowledgeable, even some special skills or personal characteristics, and introduces you to the reader. The resume fills in more details.

Instead of using an Objective to state what you want, use a Profile to let an employer know why they would want you, and how you will contribute.

These few sentences speak directly to the hiring manager and communicate that you are “on target” for the position. People tend to remember what they read first so this is a vital part of your resume. It is where you emphasize your strengths and skills in a way that helps define you. The most common mistake is making this section too vague or broad as a way of making sure you still get considered. But that approach works against you.

While hiring managers want people who have some breadth, sounding like a “jack-of-all-trades” suggests you will not bring any new ideas or expertise to the role. Typically, jobs are open for recent grad students or postdocs because the company is looking for some new experience or innovative ideas from someone successful in their field. If you cannot identify your field and expertise, how can the hiring manager?

Your profile should define your greatest expertise, complemented by additional skills, training, or experience in related disciplines. It should not be something said for almost everyone, such as “motivated, dedicated scientist with strong problem solving skills”. It also is a place where you can tailor your resume to a specific position by prioritizing one or two of the job’s key skill requirements.

Since your profile is such an important part of your resume, you may struggle with how to write it. What do you say? How do you define yourself and not eliminate yourself as a potential candidate? What things would a hiring manager be most interested in knowing?

The experts at www.ScientificResumes.com have answered these and other questions. Among the files you will get are those describing how to think about, and write, a Profile or Summary, plus some examples you may find helpful.

Founded by recruiters, industry scientists, and hiring managers, www.ScientificResumes.com is where you can get the information to write a good scientific resume—not a general public resume. Most resume template websites are not relevant for scientific resumes. It is no wonder that scientists struggle when converting their C.V. into a result-orientated, industry-friendly resume. For peace of mind, you also have the option to have your resume professionally reviewed and returned with comments.

Do you feel that the open jobs all seem to require previous industry experience? We regularly assemble lists of jobs that do NOT require prior experience in industry. Download a recent list HERE of some companies with positions that are looking for a scientist just like you. (Remember, an industry postdoc will count later as industry experience!)

Your first step starts with creating a results-oriented, industry friendly resume with an appropriate Profile. Invest in yourself and let the experts at www.ScientificResumes.com help you take your next step. Send me a Linkedin invitation as Friend and request a 10% discount code.

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