How do you make your resume stand out to recruiters who spend an average of 7.4 seconds reviewing your application? Enter the resume headline. This is the first thing recruiters and managers read. 

A strong headline hooks the recruiter’s interest and increases your chances of landing your dream job.

In this guide, you will learn how to write an attention-grabbing resume headline that will help you stand out and get interviews.

What is a resume headline?

A strong resume headline is a short statement at the top of your resume that proves your value proposition. 

With only a few words, the goal of these one-liners is to grab the attention of recruiters and show them what you bring to the table. 

When written effectively, they help recruiters and potential employers quickly decide whether you are a strong candidate. 

Here’s an example of a memorable resume headline:

Seasoned Sales Manager with 10+ Years of Experience in Driving Revenue

How to write a resume headline

No need to overcomplicate things! Resume headlines that pack a punch are easy to write.

This is the best way to structure your headline:

Job Title + Years of Experience + Top Skill / Accomplishment / Certification

Additionally, here are 8 key points to keep in mind when crafting a great resume headline:

  1. Begin with your current job title or your desired role. Clearly state your job title or the position you’re applying for. This immediately shows recruiters what you’re aiming for.
  2. Highlight your years of experience and field. When the job requires some degree of experience, showcasing your years of experience in your headline is critical. For instance, “Seasoned Financial Analyst with 10+ Years in Risk Management.”
  3. Showcase key strengths, certifications, or achievements. Quantify your standout accomplishments or feature one or two key skills or certifications relevant to the job. For example, “Project Manager | Spearheaded $5M Product Launch.”
  4. Use strong action verbs. Use action-oriented verbs to highlight your impressive achievements. For instance, “Regional Sales Manager | Drove Revenue Growth by 45%.”
  5. Tailor your headline to the job. Make sure your headline matches the job description.
  6. Keep it short. Aim for brevity without losing impact.
  7. Use title case when writing your headline.
  8. Include relevant keywords. Use keywords from the job description and include some in your headline.

Read more: 27+ Free Certifications to Add to Your Resume

How to find the right keywords to include in your resume headline

When you submit your resume, it usually goes through the applicant tracking system (ATS), a software that makes it easy for recruiters to sift through hundreds of resumes quickly.

Through the ATS, recruiters can look for the top candidates by searching for specific keywords. Only those who match the keywords will be seen by the recruiters.

Keywords can be: 

Incorporating these keywords into your resume headline will increase your visibility.

Here’s how to easily find the right keywords:

  1. Check for technical skills, specialization, software, or industry jargon mentioned in the job description.
  2. Note the soft skills required for the job.
  3. Keep an eye out for keywords that are repeated frequently. This is a telling sign that the word is important and that recruiters will look for it in a candidate.

To save you time and ensure that you have the right keywords in your headline, you can use Jobscan’s resume scanner.

All you have to do is upload your resume into the tool and add the job description of the role you are applying for.

Jobscan will then give you a match score that shows how well your resume matches the specific job. It also outlines key improvement suggestions and gives you a list of keywords you need to include.

Here’s what it looks like:

A match report with resume score and recommended hard skills.

All you need to do is work these highlighted keywords into your resume to improve your score and increase your chances of being seen by a recruiter.

Importance of an effective resume headline

A well-crafted and targeted resume headline can impact your chances of getting hired.

Here are 4 reasons why you should include one on your resume.

  1. Your resume headline is the first thing recruiters see when checking your resume. It is your elevator pitch, so you have to make it count.
  2. It proves to recruiters that you are a good fit for the job. It showcases your key accomplishments, skills, and the value you bring to the company.
  3. A high-impact headline makes you stand out from other job candidates. It helps you stay top-of-mind to recruiters.
  4. Over 97 percent of Fortune 500 companies use applicant tracking systems (ATS). The resume headline then is critical real estate, where you can put keywords recruiters might search for.

45 good resume headline examples for different jobs

Here are 45 examples of resume headlines to guide you as you write yours.

  1. Healthcare Project Manager with 8+ Years in Healthcare Administration
  2. Product Development Cashier and Customer-Centric POS Innovator with Retail Experience
  3. Finance Director with CFO Expertise in Budgeting and Forecasting
  4. HR Manager with 5 Years in Strategic Talent Acquisition and Employee Development | SHRM Certified
  5. Recruiter with Expertise in Sourcing Top Talent, ATS, and Talent Pipeline Management
  6. Customer Service Representative with 5-Star Customer Satisfaction Ratings
  7. Call Center Agent Efficient in Multichannel Support, CRM, and Phone Systems
  8. Saleslady with Experience in Retail Sales and Customer Engagement
  9. Mechanical Engineer with 5 Years of Experience in Innovative Machine Design and Optimization, CAD, and Prototyping
  10. Basketball Coach who is Passionate in Training Tomorrow’s MVPs
  11. Freelance Worker with a Diverse Skill Set for Flexible Projects
  12. SEO Specialist Driving Online Visibility and Ranking with Expertise in Google Analytics and Keyword Optimization
  13. Marketing Manager Crafting Data-Driven Marketing Campaigns and Digital Strategies
  14. Graphic Designer and Creative Visual Storyteller with Expertise in Adobe Creative Cloud
  15. Civil Engineer with 11+ Years of Experience in Infrastructure Design, Construction, and Project Management
  16. Software QA Tester Ensuring Flawless User Experiences
  17. Environmental Consultant with 10 Years of Experience in Sustainability Solutions and Regulatory Compliance
  18. Legal Assistant | Supporting Legal Excellence | Research and Documentation Specialist
  19. Digital Content Creator with 9 Years of Experience in Engaging Audiences with Compelling Content
  20. Electrician with Proficiency in Electrical Systems and Safety and Code Compliance
  21. Supply Chain Analyst with Expertise in Optimizing Logistics for Efficiency, Data Analysis, and Forecasting
  22. Non-profit Program Manager Passionate to Drive Social Change through Effective Programs, Grant Writing, and Impact Assessment
  23. Experienced Cashier Delivering Top-Notch Customer Service and Accurate Cash Handling
  24. Retail Sales Associate with Experience in Customer-Centric Sales and Visual Merchandising
  25. Elementary School Teacher with 8 Years of Experience in Curriculum Development and Classroom Management
  26. Digital Marketing Specialist | Online Brand Growth and Engagement | PPC and Social Media Advertising
  27. Seasoned Data Scientist  Transforming Data into Strategic Insights with 15 Years of Experience in Machine Learning and Data Visualization
  28. Pharmacist | Ensuring Medication Safety and Patient Wellness 
  29. Restaurant Manager with 7 Years of Experience in Staff Training and Inventory Control
  30. Web Developer Skilled in Front-End and Back-End Development
  31. Seasoned Registered Nurse Specializing in Pediatric Care
  32. Social Media Manager with a Track Record in Building Strong Online Communities
  33. Electrical Technician Ensuring Safe Electrical Systems with Wiring and Troubleshooting Expertise
  34. HR Generalist Fostering a Positive Workplace with expertise in Employee Relations and HR Compliance
  35. Interior Designer Specializing in Space Planning and Design Solutions
  36. Technical Support Specialist Resolving Tech Issues with Expertise in Help Desk and Troubleshooting
  37. Market Research Analyst Uncovering Market Insights for Informed Decision-Making through Data Analysis and Consumer Trends
  38. Content Marketing Manager Engaging Audiences with Valuable Content, Adept in Content Strategy and SEO Optimization
  39. Registered Dietitian Promoting Nutritional Health through Personalized Dietary Counseling and Wellness Programs
  40. Non-profit Fundraiser Skilled in Donor Relations and Grant Writing
  41. High School Teacher with Expertise in Differentiated Instruction and Student Engagement
  42. Strategic Operations Manager with 10+ Years of Experience in Streamlined Supply Chain
  43. Experienced UX Designer who Improved User Engagement, Boosting Conversion Rates by 20%
  44. Senior Financial Analyst Who Enhanced Profit Margins, Delivering 12% Revenue Growth
  45. Seasoned Attorney and Litigation Specialist with Expertise in Contract Law, Negotiation, and a 90% Case Win Rate

To get started with your resume headline, you can check our comprehensive resume writing guide, resume templates, and resume examples.

Key Takeaways

Here are some key pointers you need to remember when writing your headline:

  • Read the job listing and understand the job requirements before writing your headline.
  • Start with your target role and then add relevant skills and impressive accomplishments.
  • Incorporate resume keywords into your headline.
  • Be sure to tailor your resume headline to the specific job you are applying for.
  • To increase your chances of landing a job interview, you need to optimize the rest of your resume for the ATS.
Is your resume ATS compatible? See how it would do in ATS like Lever

Frequently asked questions

Who should use resume headlines?

Resume headlines are most beneficial to candidates who have robust, applicable experience, but all job seekers can use them.

What is an example of a resume headline for an entry-level job applicant?

Entry-level applicants who don’t have relevant experience yet can use headlines to display soft skills, tool proficiencies, and winning attributes. 

Here is an example of a good headline for a resume with no experience:

Personable Customer Service Representative Proficient with Call Tracking Software

How long should a headline on a resume be?

Try to keep your headline to one line, preferably around ten words. Remember, this is just a title. You’ll have more room to display your skills and experiences in the other sections of your resume. So aim for brevity and clarity.

If you feel like a headline doesn’t give you enough room, consider writing a resume summary instead.

How do you format your resume headline?

Make sure your headline draws the eye’s attention by setting it in title case (capitalizing the words) and using a headline font that has a larger font size than the body of your resume. 

What are some mistakes to avoid when writing your headline?

Here are common mistakes you need to watch out for when crafting a compelling resume headline:

  1. Stuffing too many keywords in your headline.
  2. Having an excessively lengthy resume headline. Your headline should be specific and concise.
  3. Not communicating the value you bring to the company.
  4. Using buzzwords, cliches, and jargon.
  5. Lying or exaggerating. If your headline piques a hiring manager’s attention, they’ll look for supporting evidence to prove you’re the ideal candidate.
  6. Not tailoring your resume headline to the job posting.
  7. Ignoring the needs of the company based on the job description.
  8. Using fancy fonts and other creative formatting. While this might visually look good, the ATS won’t be able to parse this correctly.
  9. Failing to update your headline and the rest of your resume regularly.

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