If you are trying to find a job in accounting, especially as a new graduate, turning to resume examples can help you learn what you should—and shouldn’t—have on your resume.
Job seekers with accounting skills are in high demand in today’s job market. “Individual majors most in demand at the bachelor’s degree level include finance, accounting, and computer science. These same three majors have topped the list since 2012,” according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers’ 2015 Job Outlook Report.
Companies expect to hire 21.2 percent more new accounting graduates in 2015 than they did in 2014, according to the report.
To browse resume examples, go to Indeed.com and click “Find Resumes” at the top of the home page. There, you’ll be able to search resumes by keyword and location. Doing this can help you understand the skills and tools you should feature your own resume.
However, that provides only a generalized overview. To improve your chances of landing a specific job, you’ll need to use the job posting itself as another tool. From that job posting, extract the keywords and use each one that applies to you to show that you are a good fit for the job.
Resume keywords play a huge role in the way applicant tracking systems filter and rank resumes. If your resume lacks the right keywords, it might never get seen by the human on the other side of the ATS.
The above word cloud was created using the text of a dozen accounting job postings. The bigger the word, the more often it appeared throughout the job postings.
Accountant resume keywords
Notes on accounting
In the word list above, there are two industry-specific abbreviations. “ADP” refers to the company Automatic Data Processing, Inc., and “GAAP” stands for “generally accepted accounting principles.”
“The roles of accounting and finance professionals are expanding,” according to Accountemps, a staffing agency specializing in accounting. “Given the frequent interaction with other departments, today’s accounting professionals need sound decision-making, negotiation and strategic-thinking skills.”
Using concrete accomplishment statements on your resume is the most effective way to demonstrate these skills. Don’t just say that you’re a strategic thinker—give an example of a time when you’ve put your strategic-thinking skills to work. What challenge did you face, or what problem did you spot? What did you do, and how did the situation turn out? And, of course, don’t forget to include numbers to back up your statements.
Optimizing your resume
Increasing your visibility within an ATS and positioning yourself as a good fit for a role is your best bet for getting an interview—and a job. Fortunately, Jobscan’s resume analysis tool turns optimizing your resume into a fast and easy process. Just paste the text of your resume and the text of a job posting into the appropriate boxes, and you’ll instantly get a score showing how closely your resume aligns with that job. You’ll also get suggestions for changes you can make that will help your resume get ranked more highly by an applicant tracking system. Resume examples are a great starting point, but they are no match for such personalized resume feedback.