2017 HBCU Careers Magazine

HBCU Careers Magazine

Demonstrating accomplishment is first about looking for ways to make an impact and consistently recording the contributions made. As for the practice of writing, some basic rules or "ABCs" of résumé accomplishment statements follow with examples: The “C” Accomplishment Statement – This level reflects the most basic statement which only captures responsibilities, akin to a job description. Example: Responsible for compiling and generating reports. The previous example is from a Customer Service Representative job posting. While it can serve as a good starting place, it is a bad stopping place. The “B” Accomplishment Statement – This level applies good phrase structure (starts with a power verb, no period at the end), quantifies the task (addresses how many/much, and how often) and answers basic journalistic questions (Who? What? When? Where? Why? How?). Example: Compile(d) and generate(d) six to ten financial reports monthly in Microsoft Excel for review by department leadership The reader's mind can start to rest concerning unanswered thoughts about what this individual really does and why. The “A” Accomplishment Statement – The last layer uses the STAR/BAR (Situation-Task- Action-Result or Behavior-Action-Result) method to guide composition of the most compelling statements demonstrating scope AND impact. Example: Innovated the monthly financial reporting production process for six to ten reports, considering a departmental lag in delivery times, by utilizing a free software add-on to auto-generate reports, supplying documents in preferred formatting, directly to leadership saving six labor hours ($300) per month Drops mic. The reader is provided with information on a problem that existed for a company that this individual’s contributions helped to alleviate and thereby saving money. There is fodder for the reader to want to know more about how this accomplishment could be applied to their department or company. A prime opportunity to entice potential employers, although many reviewers will not spend much time on a résumé, is through substantive and effective accomplishment statements. With just seconds to make an impression, positioning the reviewer to look at “A” level accomplishments ensure that the time is useful. Make a concerted effort, and perhaps utilize some professional assistance, to turn “C” level accomplishments statements into “A” level ones so that the reviewer’s few seconds turn into a few more. Once you’ve grabbed the reviewer’s attention in a meaningful way, the employer’s decision to extend the interview invitation becomes a no-brainer.


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