Resume teardown #5: military officer transitioning to the private sector

Today’s resume teardown comes from someone leaving the military after a career as an officer, looking for jobs in the risk management field.

He/she is clearly looking to leverage skills related to risk and project management in the military, and is somewhat successful at showing that background, but still could improve his/her resume significantly.

The overall feeling is that the document is solid but without luster. It won’t disqualify the candidate, but it won’t make him/her stand out, either.

Here’s the original resume. (You’ll see that there are some formatting issues with the dates, but he/she indicates in the original post that they are due to the conversion to PDF and don’t exist in the original. So we’ll ignore those.)



My general comment is that this resume is good, but not great, as noted above.

He/she does a decent job writing bullets that highlight results in much of the document, but oddly fails to do so in a few places, like in the second bullet in the second job (“Collaborated with operation teams…”).  And the English in other parts is a bit awkward.

Here’s some more detail:

  1.  The bullets for the first job are pretty tight, although in the first one, he/she might consider leading with “Saved department $30,000…” so he/she gets right to the point. The third bullet is flat, though, and says very little about the person.
  2. There’s a lot of technical jargon here, like “agile and waterfall approaches,” that detract from the document’s readability. These are techincal project management terms, so I get why he/she thought to put them in there (“See, I know both approaches!”), but they did so at the cost of showing concrete results. Sure, they executed a project plan, but what was the outcome? Did he/she do a good job? If you did a crap job, the employer doesn’t care whether you used the agile or waterfall approaches.
  3. Moving to the second and third jobs, the bullets lose a bit of the coherence they had further up the page. The second and fourth bullets in the second job (“Collaborated with operation teams…” and “Collaborated with cross-functional teams…” add next to nothing here.
  4. Moving down to the education section, the candidate should either make the risk management course more beefy or eliminate it altogether. Give us some detail! Otherwise, maybe you just took some rando online course and slapped it on your resume. (It’s possible that the original had more detail, and the author made the text more generic to hide his/her identity, but then again, maybe not.)
  5. The resume ends with a very anemic skills section. This is a common issue, sadly. The author uses this valuable closing line to reiterate †hings that their work experience shows (“I have project management skills”) and tell prospective employers he/she can use MS Word and Outlook. He/she should close much stronger. There’s also a hanging semicolon there at the end.

Below is the revised copy with my comments embedded. Overall grade is a B:  nothing disastrous, but nothing very exciting, either.

Some changes to the English and the revision of about a third of the bullets would improve this a lot.





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