How To Write a Powerful Resume Headline

May 20, 2024
resume headline

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The resume headline is a crucial element of a resume; it acts as the head and face of your whole resume body. And if you know how to craft a compelling headline that can make HR “click” on your resume, then it means you have crossed half the bridge to your dream job. 

Want to know how to write a click-worthy resume headline that grabs HR’s attention in the first 3 seconds? In the article, you will get all the info on how to do so with practical resume headline examples. But before that, let us explain what a resume headline is and why you should write it.

Many of you might have questions about how a simple resume headline affects your chances of getting a job. Or how can you use the resume title to your benefit? Let us understand.

What is a Resume Headline?

A resume headline is a one-line description of your professional goals and achievements that are used to grab the interviewers’ attention and present your skills and professional experience. It is a good way to explain to the hiring manager why you are the “right fit” for their organisation.  

However, it is crucial that you write a good headline in your resume related to the job title that matches your skill set. If a good resume header can grab the reader’s attention, then an incompatible resume title can cause the hiring manager to lose interest in your job application.  

Why Should You Write a Resume Headline?

A resume header might not be a compulsory element to put in your resume, but it is an important element. It grabs readers’ attention and informs them about your skills in a sentence. Although these are mostly used by candidates with years of experience, they need to showcase all their skills and experience briefly.  

Freshers or beginners can also use a resume header highlighting their attributes and skills. There are many reasons why you should add a resume headline as: 

1. Highlights Value

The resume headline helps highlight your key skills, that can make you a worthy candidate. Additionally, it informs HR why they need you for their organisation and what you can bring to the table.

2. One-liner Story

If you are an experienced professional and want to highlight all your achievements briefly and boldly, then a CV headline is the best way to do it. 

3. ATS Friendly

The first impression of your resume matters a lot. A lot of business and organizations uses ATS (Applicant Tracking System). The system will parse your resume and will give it a ‘score’ based on various pre-determined criteria such as an ATS-compliant resume template, use of actionable keywords, use of correct spelling and grammar, and more. 

Once this process is done, a human (HR Person) will come and review your resume. They will start with what ATS has flagged as ‘highest scoring’ and will move on down the list. Once they have sorted the resumes, they will review them in further detail and potentially send them out for interview rounds or a higher-up to review.

4. Pitch Perfect

If you struggle to pitch your skills in front of employers, you must use a good headline for your resume. Writing informative and catchy headlines will tell them about your selling points.

5. Resume Headline for Freshers

There is no disadvantage for freshers if they don’t have the experience to mention resume headlines. You can highlight your interpersonal attributes and skills. It will showcase your interpersonal skills and might get you an interview, where you can introduce yourself in a better way and highlight more points about yourself.      

Suggested Read: Best Practices to Send Your Resume to HR (+Samples)

Resume Headline Examples 

Some things are must to include in the resume title, such as job title + years of experience Skills/ Achievements. Here are some resume headline examples to give an idea of how to write your resume header.

How to write a resume headline

More Examples of resume headlines

1. Engineering:

1. “Experienced Software Engineer | Crafting Code that Transforms Challenges into Solutions”

2. “Dynamic Aerospace Engineer | Elevating Projects with Precision and Passion”

3.  “Aspiring Civil Engineer | Committed to Contributing to Sustainable and Human-centric Infrastructure”

4. “Recent Electrical Engineering Graduate | Aiming to Apply Academic Excellence and Knowledge in Real-world Challenges”

5. “AI/ML Enthusiast | Recent Graduate Eager to Apply Machine Learning Algorithms for Real-world Impact”

2. Marketing:

1. “Strategic Marketing Professional | Unleashing Creativity to Drive Brand Excellence”

2. “Digital Marketing Graduate | Proficient in Analytics and Eager to Drive Online Presence”

3. “Experienced Brand Manager | Shaping Compelling Narratives for Market Impact”

4. “Innovative Content Marketer | Crafting Stories that Resonate Across Audiences”

5. “Results-Driven SEO Specialist | Boosting Online Visibility for Maximum Impact”

3. Sales:

1. “Dynamic Sales Executive | Driving Revenue Growth through Strategic Partnerships”

2. “Customer-Focused Sales Enthusiast | Ready to Learn and Excel in Dynamic Environments”

3. “Experienced Sales Manager | Leading High-Performing Teams to Success”

4. “Strategic Account Executive | Cultivating Business Opportunities with Precision”

5. “Tech-Savvy Sales Specialist | Navigating Digital Landscapes for Sales Success”

4. Creative Field:

1. “Strategic Copywriter | Turning Ideas into Compelling Stories that Connect with Audiences”

3. “Aspiring Social Media Marketer | Fresh Graduate Eager to Create Impactful Campaigns and Engage Audiences”

3. “Entry-Level UX/UI Designer | Recent Graduate Passionate About Crafting Intuitive and User-Centric Experiences”

4. ” Content Creator | Fresh Writer with a Knack for Captivating Audiences Across Various Social Media Platforms”

5. “Aspiring Video Editor | Recent Graduate Ready to Bring Ideas to Life Through Dynamic Visual Storytelling”

Hope these sample resume headers help you understand how to write a catchy, informative and one-liner headline in your resume. You can use these examples as a base to write your resume header.  

It is highly recommended that you tailor your title and resume to your skills and the job title you are applying for.  Remember, the goal is to highlight your skills in a better way, so if you think you can do it in a much better way than the mentioned examples, then do it.   

10 Tips to Write a Good Resume Headline

Writing an enticing and professional headline is not an easy task. Here are some tips that can be used to write the best headlines for a resume to highlight your skills and go just right with your job title. 

1. Keep it Short

Keeping the headline in the resume short and crisp is crucial. A resume title should always be one line, not more than that. Sometimes, the title only contains active words that highlight the important details of the candidates. Hence, make sure to make your headline short but informative. 

2. Use Keywords

Add keywords to your resume title to ensure your resume passes through ATS successfully. The ideal keywords to add will be those mentioned in the job description. If you have the skills mentioned for the job title, then use those as keywords to highlight your skills. 

3. The Right Position

Before writing a headline in the resume you must know its right place in your resume. Your professional headline for your resume should be written above the resume summary and below your name and address. This way the hiring manager will be able to spot it at first glance, making it easy for them to know your skills and experience.   

4. Right Title Case

Writing your resume headline in the right title case is also important. It correctly highlights your professional headline and makes it easier to spot and read.  

5. Cut the Cliches

Don’t add unnecessary cliched words like “highly motivated”, “go-getter”, and “team player”. Instead, let your skills speak and highlight them in your resume. This way, your actions will prove your worthiness and get you called for the interview.  

6. Highlight Your Achievements

Never shy away from highlighting your professional achievements in your resume, especially in the resume header. And no, it’s not self-boasting, it informs the future employer of your candidature. So, if you have any achievements in your past roles, that are similar to the role you are applying for, then add them to the headline of your resume.  

7. Write the Specific Skills

You might have multiple skills that are quite useful, but the job title you are applying for requires only one or two of those skills. No worries, highlight only specific skills required for the job you applied for. Add only those in the headline of your resume.  

8. Add Experiences

You can add your work experiences to your resume to improve your chances of getting hired. While it is unnecessary to mention these in your professional headline, it might work in your favour if the job role you’re applying for requires a lot of experience.   

9. Correlate with Data

If you are writing words like “completed,” “delivered” and “assisted” without any relevant data then you are not doing any good to your resume. Include data to prove your achievements, doing so will add reliability to work claims and make you a worthy candidate. For example, instead of just writing increased sales, you can write increased the sale of Y product by 30% in 4 months. 

10. Prepare Multiple Resume Headlines

Don’t just write one resume title for every job you apply for. Write a customized headline for every job position that you apply for. Keep a stock of the best headlines for resume, so that you can use a different title while applying to different companies. This way you would never run out of ideas for resume headers and can add unique headers in every application.

5 Mistakes to Avoid While Writing a Good Resume Headline

Just writing any headline in a resume is not enough, you need to write the correct resume header to grab the reader’s attention and highlight your hard and soft skills. While writing a resume header, you must keep a few things in mind and avoid certain mistakes. Then only you can create an interview-ready resume.  

1. Typos and Grammatical Errors

These are some basic things, which is why candidates often ignore these things. Don’t be one of them, always make sure before submitting your resume that there are no typos or grammatical errors in it. You can use tools like Grammarly to proofread your resume.  

2. Don’t Make it too Lengthy

Neither the headline in the resume nor the resume itself should be too long. A resume header is a one-line sentence which highlights your qualities. Your resume should not be more than 2 pages. No hiring manager reads long resumes. In fact, on average, they give only 6 seconds to one resume.

3. Leaving Out Important Information

Remember all the relevant keywords that match your criteria should be included in the CV headline. Not highlighting your achievements and skills can cost you your dream job. So, double-check before submitting your resume that you have included all the relevant information in it.  

4. Including False Information

This is the worst mistake you can make with your resume, adding false information to your resume can tarnish your reputation. Ensure you don’t add any false or misleading information in your resume headline or overall resume.  

5. Including Objective in Resume Headline

The objective and headline, are different and play different roles in a resume. Never include your objective in your resume title. This mistake can confuse the hiring manager and they might end up rejecting your application.

Resume Headline vs. Resume Profile

A resume headline and resume profile, are two different elements of a resume between which people get confused. Here is a simple explained difference between the two.

Resume Headline

Resume Profile

It is a one-line headline describing your primary skill, years of experience and best career achievement.

A resume profile is written as a short paragraph or bulleted points describing your additional skills and qualities that make you an ideal candidate.

Example: Graphic Designer with 5 years experience in the film industry. 

Example: Dedicated and highly organised Team Leader with an MBA degree and 6 years of leading experience in industry. Eager to join MVY Tech to lead teams, solve problems and achieve organizational goals. Completed 10+ projects in previous role generating Rs 25 cr in revenue. 

Resume headline and Resume Profile, are two terms that are often used while creating a resume. And people often confuse resume headlines with resume profiles. Yes, their purpose is the same: to highlight the skills and achievements of a candidate. 

However, they both are written in different ways. The headline of a resume is written as a one-liner sentence, whereas a resume profile is written as a summary with bullet points. You can use both in your resume, but make sure to use them in a way that highlights your strong points.  

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Get Your Resume Shortlisted

Making a job change or applying for jobs for the first time, are big steps in a professional’s life. As a fresher, writing a resume is the first step toward these changes, a resume is the first thing that a hiring manager would see before they even meet you.  

For a perfect resume, you can access free resume templates on the web as well as hire resume-writing professionals.  

However, some job seekers also prefer to write their resumes. Whatever your choice, you should ensure that your resume includes all the relevant information, with accurate data and error-free sentences.

Educational qualifications, certificates, skills, and experience, all these are common sections of a resume, which every applicant writes. However, if you want to stand apart from the other candidates and grab the attention of the hiring manager, then you should include a professional headline in your resume. 

After reading the article, you must have understood the importance of a resume header, how it highlights your skills in a few words, how it makes your resume applicant tracking system friendly and how it makes your resume unique from other applicants. So, ensure you utilise all the information provided in the article to tailor your resume accordingly. 

Get more resume and cover letter tips.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How to write a resume headline?

A resume headline summarizes the skillset and experience of an applicant. The cv headline should be a short and crisp one-liner with the necessary keywords to pass the ATS (Application Tracking System) and should be written keeping that in mind.

What is a good resume headline?

 A good resume headline is one that is to the point and brief about the applicant’s profession, experience, and skills. A good professional headline emphasizes the achievements of the candidate, the outcomes they produced, and the impact of their work. One can also add their intrapersonal skills if they do not have the relevant experience required to increase their chances of being shortlisted.

What is a good resume headline for experienced professionals?

A good resume headline for experienced professionals is one that highlights the relevant experience of the candidate along with the skillset they bring to the table in one line and has the right keywords.

For example- Senior Content writer with more than twenty major published articles.

What can I write in a resume headline as a fresher with no experience?

Crafting an impactful resume headline as a fresher involves showcasing your academic prowess, relevant skills, and enthusiasm. Here’s a guide to help you create a compelling headline:

1. Start with Your Academic Background: Mention your degree, major, and graduation year to highlight your educational foundation.
2. Emphasize Academic Excellence: Showcase any academic honors, distinctions, or relevant coursework.
3. Highlight Relevant Skills: Include key skills that align with your field of interest.
4. Showcase College Projects: Mention impactful college projects that demonstrate the practical application of your knowledge.
5. Express Enthusiasm: Convey your eagerness to contribute and learn in your chosen field.
6. Tailor to Your Field: Customize your headline based on the industry or role you are targeting.
Hope this helps! Good luck!

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