How to Write CV Job Descriptions in 5 Steps (With Examples)
By Indeed Editorial Team
Published 19 June 2022
The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.
Your resume or CV is an essential document during your job search, as it summarises your previous work experience, skills and education. Most resumes include a section detailing each relevant job you've held, highlighting your most impressive achievements. Learning to write effective descriptions of your past jobs helps communicate your value to potential employers and perhaps reach your career goals. In this article, we define what these descriptions are, explain how to write CV job descriptions, share some resume job description examples that you may find useful and offer tips to help you when writing your own.
What is a CV job description?
A CV job description is a portion of your curriculum vitae (CV) or resume that discusses each relevant job you've held and why your actions were beneficial to your employer. These sections typically use bulleted lists to highlight some core duties and achievements. Employers may review these sections to understand if a candidate has experience with particular tasks and software.
You might also use job descriptions to emphasise relevant skills. For example, rather than simply listing leadership in your skills section, you might explain in a job description that you led a weekly meeting discussing organisational objectives and assigning goals to each team member. This might show employers the practical applications of your skills and draw attention to the results you delivered.
How to write CV job descriptions
Below are steps for how to write CV job descriptions:
1. Select your most relevant experiences
You may only include some of your past jobs, especially if you have a long career history. Remember to include only the most relevant positions you've held. You can use discretion to identify which jobs may be most vital to include. You might discuss jobs in the same industry as the job you're applying to, jobs with similar responsibilities or prestigious jobs that may show your aptitude. For example, if you've switched careers, you might still find it relevant to include a job from your former industry if you've held an impressive title or worked for a highly selective employer.
2. Share the details of your employment
For each job, denote the name of your employer, your job title and your start/end dates with the month and year. You can also list the location to add additional context to your career history. This information can help potential employers verify your background, understand how much experience you have in the industry, learn more about your progress throughout your career and draw connections with your previous employers. For example, if you worked at a well-known global chain, it might catch the hiring manager's attention and show them you know how to implement global strategies locally.
3. Describe your responsibilities and achievements
Beneath the basic information about each job, include a bulleted list of your duties and accomplishments at each job. It may help to structure each bullet point with a strong action verb, a task you performed and the benefit it brought to the company. Describing your work experiences this way may highlight the positive results of your decisions and help hiring managers understand the value you may bring to their organisation.
4. Quantify your accomplishments with numbers
Include numerical data wherever possible. Having objective metrics can strengthen your resume by adding additional context and demonstrating the financial value of your actions. Many employers look for candidates who can optimise their work processes, increase their profits and strengthen their production output. Consider including key performance indicators (KPIs) in your resume, quantifying your successes with dollar amounts, percentages and numbers.
5. Add important keywords
Analyse the job description to identify vital keywords the organisation uses. These terms may be vital to include to ensure an applicant tracking system (ATS) highlights you as a highly suitable candidate. Many companies use ATS software to simplify the hiring process. This method collects and scans application materials like resumes and identifies candidates who discuss vital competencies and experiences. They typically do this by reviewing documents for keywords and ranking candidates based on the employer's criteria.
CV job description examples
Below are some examples of job descriptions you might use as inspiration when crafting your own resume:
Resume job description example for an experienced candidate
Here's an example of a job description for a resume:
Senior IT Trainer
Brainstorm Incorporated Technologies
demonstrate how to use IT infrastructure for groups of 30+ new recruits
create resources for hardware and software, improving efficiency by 18%
design unique lesson plans for each group of recruits to target skill gaps
negotiate pricing with suppliers, decreasing spend by over $10K
develop final tests after each course, recruits earning an average score of 96%
The Think! Innovative Solutions Company
April 2011–February 2017
learned the functionalities of over thirty internal programs at an expert level
led weekly training sessions for over 550 team members
gave individual feedback to each team member, improving test scores by 8% on average
Resume job description example for an entry-level candidate
Here's an example of a job description on an entry-level resume:
Mainway Marketing Agency
contribute copy to over 26 marketing campaigns for clients in the real estate, health care and education industries
revise content according to search engine optimisation (SEO) guidelines
received "Intern of the Month" award for outstanding contributions to a social media campaign
prepare pitch decks for potential clients, securing a contract in 90% of pitches
earned a 5/5 score from management, graded on professionalism, quality of content, teamwork, leadership potential and integrity
2115 Optometry Group
February 2020–November 2021
used health care management systems (HMS) to input and locate important patient information
sanitised examination room thoroughly every 30 minutes, a 50% increase from previous health and safety practises
assisted seven doctors with administrative duties like filing, patient communication and data entry
Tips for writing CV job descriptions
Here are some tips you may follow that can help you when describing your CV responsibilities:
Read the job advertisement closely
Remember to study the advertisement carefully to learn which skills and capabilities are important to the employer. You can then craft job descriptions that discuss the primary qualifications they're seeking to position yourself as a viable candidate. Customise your resume for each job to which you apply to ensure you're highlighting the traits that each employer values most.
Many hiring managers skim resumes to find the most suitable candidates, so it's essential they understand your qualifications easily. Aim to keep your job descriptions concise, limiting yourself to one or two sentences for each job. Consider including between three and five bullet points for each job and opt for strong, specific language to help you communicate effectively.
Use proper formatting
Making your job descriptions simple and readable may showcase your professionalism and help you keep the hiring manager's attention. Bolding the heading and using a sleek, professional font can make your document easier to read. You can choose from many styles and formats when crafting your resume but many people choose to use reverse-chronological order to highlight their most recent accomplishments first. Remember to check your resume carefully for any typos or errors before you submit your application.
Remember to only include truthful information in your resume. Many employers consider honesty and transparency to be important organisational values, and they may seek candidates who demonstrate these values. If you're new to the field you're applying to work in, you can supplement your limited experience with transferrable skills. For example, if you want to work in education, you might describe your responsibilities at a previous job in a retail shop, highlighting duties that may be relevant in education like communication, interpersonal abilities and patience.
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