How To Write a Personal Profile (Examples and Tips)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 12 June 2021

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.

A personal profile, also known as a personal summary, is the first crucial piece of information that a recruiter reads about you. Since it's the first impression you make, it has to be concise and catchy. A well-written personal profile can determine your progress to the next stage in an interview. That's why, despite its short length, it remains a crucial element in resume writing.

In this article, we discuss what a personal profile conveys, the benefits of including one and how to write a personal profile with examples and tips for your reference.

What does a personal profile convey?

A personal profile, otherwise known as a personal summary, serves as an introduction to your professional skills and experience at the top of your resume. It's a succinct section that conveys why an employer should hire you in as few words as possible. This small paragraph gives a snapshot of your career ambitions. It tells recruiters whether you are qualified for the role and lets them reflect on whether they can support your personal growth and development. From reading your personal profile alone, recruiters will decide if your resume is relevant enough to read in greater detail.

Related: 6 Universal Rules for Writing Your CV

Benefits of a personal profile

Professionals often debate on the benefit of including a personal profile in your resume. While some decide to skip this optional section, others believe it fits better in the flow of your resume. Here's an overview of why you might use a personal profile in your resume:

Grabs attention

Think of a personal profile as a sales pitch. Its goal is to entice the recruiter to read more about you after providing them with a glimpse of your unique character and most employable skills. Thus, a personal profile is a beneficial device that lets you take control of the narrative and make a good first impression.

Increases your chances of getting to the next stage

Research has shown that top-performing resumes often include a personal profile. This is because recruiters often focus on the top half of the resume to form their judgement of the viability of your candidacy. Since recruiters receive dozens of resumes per day, this skimming behaviour makes sense. Thus, to ensure your most important information gets read, it's beneficial to include a personal profile at the beginning of your resume. Doing so will also increase the likelihood of securing an interview.

Related: How to Write a Resume During COVID-19

How to write a personal profile

The following steps describe how to write a convincing personal profile:

1. Keep its length in mind

The key to writing a good personal profile is to stay within a tight limit of two to three sentences only. This way, you can ensure your writing remains focused. It's also a helpful requirement for recruiters. Think of it as a short version of your resume that they can read to get a quick overview of your skills and experience. From a visual standpoint, it's also best to adhere to this length. Your resume will not only look less compressed, but it will also allow you to dedicate the bulk of your content to your work experience section.

2. Open with your most impressive skills

Rather than simply stating your profession, use two to three skills to describe your effectiveness as a professional. This is your own personal branding. It highlights what you do best compared to other equally qualified candidates. Some examples of powerful skills that people describe in their personal profile include:

  • Detail-oriented

  • Team player

  • Critical thinker

  • Problem-solver

  • Bilingual

  • Creative

  • Adaptable

Related: Selecting the Right CV Skills in 5 Simple Steps

3. Summarise your work experience

Introduce your current position in the job market to establish to recruiters the level of expertise you bring to the role. State the number of years of work experience you have accumulated. If you are entering the job market for the first time or after a break, briefly mention the reason behind your intention to find a job. For example, if you have just completed a university degree, you could describe yourself as a 'young graduate looking for an apprenticeship position'.

4. Explain what you hope to achieve

Towards the end of your personal profile paragraph, try to link the job description to your career ambitions. This not only makes you appear like a more relevant job candidate, but it also shows that you want to invest in the company long-term, a highly desirable quality that most recruiters are looking for. Discussing your goals shows employers your commitment to growing your skills within this career path.

5. Mention any other notable achievements

Impress your recruiter with any industry awards or other notable recognitions that you have received. This is a great way to stand out from other job candidates. It makes your application look more credible because it's an official accolade that people can look up online or ask their industry peers about.

6. Proofread your personal profile

Although this is a short section on your resume, it's important to take the time to construct it properly. Remember to proofread your work for spelling, grammar and other linguistic errors after it's done. Check that you use the same format in your personal profile as the one you use in your entire resume. You can also choose to highlight it with a bold or italic font, but make sure it enhances the flow of your writing.

Personal profile example

Here are a few personal profile examples for professionals in different careers and situations that you can use as a reference for your own:

Young graduate

Here's a personal profile for a recent university graduate:

"Hard-working and passionate young graduate from The University of Hong Kong's School of Business. Looking to pursue a career in marketing. Experience assisting brands on their social media profiles, effectively increasing follower growth by 12%. Skilled in Adobe Suite and Google Analytics tools."

Experienced professional

The following is a personal profile example for an experienced professional:

"Enthusiastic and resourceful teacher with 5+ years of experience. Seeking a full-time secondary school position. Certified PGDE educator who has mentored 60+ students in the past two years. Skilled in lesson planning and multimedia instruction."

Re-entering the workplace

Here's a personal profile example for a professional that is looking for a job after taking a break from their career for a few months:

"Compassionate Head Nurse with 8+ years of experience looking to return to patient care after maternity leave. Seeking to leverage strong interpersonal skills to encourage and treat patients with a variety of chronic illnesses. Open to working on weekends."

Changing careers

The following is a personal profile for someone seeking to use their existing skills and experience in another career path:

"Detail-minded and inquisitive Graphic Designer with 4+ year of experience. Looking to apply my artistic eye to Interior Design. Certified in AutoCAD software. Award-winning designer in the hospitality industry. Collaborated with professionals to deliver projects on time, with 20% fewer errors than other departments."

Tips on writing a personal profile

Here are a few resume writing tips to follow when composing your personal profile:

Use emotive vocabulary

Use emotive vocabulary, such as action verbs, in your personal profile so that it sounds more impactful and authoritative. This way, you are more likely to come across as a confident and capable professional. Words, such as 'initiated', 'pioneered' and 'advanced', ensure your reader takes you seriously.

Implement keywords

Scan your job description for important skills and characteristics that the recruiters are looking for. These are often the keywords and phrases that are repeated several times. Incorporate these keywords in your personal profile so that you appear like a good fit for the role. The more relevant you seem in your resume, the more it implies that you are interested in the position.

Add measurements to your achievements

When you discuss your achievements in your personal profile, use statistics to demonstrate the extent of your success in your previous roles. Statistics are a good way to grab attention. For example, instead of simply saying that you 'improved business partnerships', you could say you 'expanded business partnerships by 15%'. This helps recruiters quantify your performance in a way that they can compare with other candidates.

Avoid jargon

While the aim of your personal profile is to market your skills and experience, you should always strive to sound genuine. It's best to avoid jargons, such as 'go-getter', that sound inauthentic. Don't be afraid if you don't have enough work experience. Recruiters would rather hire honest candidates with a proven growth mindset.

Keep your target audience in mind

When constructing your personal profile and other sections of your resume, remind yourself that your reader is a recruiter or an employer. This technique will help you address all their questions about your candidacy in a respectful tone.

Please note that none of the companies mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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