There’s no question that your employment history is one of the most important parts of your resume. After all, employers consider work experience as one of the most critical factors when evaluating candidates’ qualifications and potential to excel within their organizations. During your job search, your ability to fully articulate your employment history during an interview is essential for your performance and ultimately landing a new position.
Here are some steps to keep in mind when discussing your work history with an employer:
Every former job on your resume comes with its own set of experiences and learning lessons. Providing some context around each position is important for helping the interviewer understand the value you brought to each job, what you took away from the role, and how you can apply what you learned to future employment. For instance, was one of your previous jobs in the customer service field? Even if this prior position isn’t directly relevant to the type of job you’re seeking, you can draw from the skills you acquired in this position and how they add to your qualifications.
Demonstrate progression when possible.
While the trajectory of your job history may be scattered a bit, you must demonstrate progression within your employment history when possible. As you discuss your past jobs, you’ll want to explain why you decided to pursue certain types of positions or industries – and how these decisions helped you evolve as a professional. For example, you may have taken on a job that required you to undergo a specific training or certification process. Highlighting certain skills or credentials that propelled your professional development will show employers that you made smart employment decisions that allowed you to continue advancing yourself.
Reinforce past and future goals.
Ideally, your employment history has led you to complete many professional goals. As you describe your prior work experience, it’s helpful to connect past jobs to the goals you’ve met along the way. Highlighting milestones will show the employer that you’re committed to growing as a professional, rather than just receiving a paycheck and going through the motions of the job. It’s also a good idea to discuss how your future goals relate to the job in which you’re interviewing for, as this will further reflect a willingness to continue advancing in your field and be an asset to a new employer.
Being mindful about effectively showcasing your employment history will be a significant component to successful interview performance. Most importantly, it will allow you to set yourself apart from the competition and become a more memorable candidate.