As a consultant, you’re an expert at giving advice and solving complex problems for your clients. However, when it comes to crafting a consultant resume, even the most seasoned professionals can find themselves stumped.
How do you condense years of experience into a concise and compelling document? On the other hand, how do you properly showcase your expertise without coming across as boastful?
That’s exactly what we’re going to delve into in this article. With a little bit of wit, a couple of expert tips, and enough professionalism, we’re going to teach you how to portray yourself in the best possible light.
So sit back, grab a cup of coffee, and let’s dive into the world of consultant resumes!
Most candidates will see the best results after submitting a one-page chronological resume.
Mandatory sections give necessary details to recruiters and are needed for the ATS, while optional sections can immensely increase your chances of success.
You should put your most valuable skills or most impressive achievements in your resume objective or summary, respectively.
Submit a personalized cover letter written for a specific position that you’re applying for to show diligence and tell recruiters more about your skills and competence.
What is the Right Format to Use for a Consultant Resume?
When it comes to resume building, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. However, the chronological resume format is the next best thing when it comes to organizing information in it. It’s the most commonly used format because recruiters are used to it, and its precise structure makes it ATS-proof.
The chronological format also puts your career development on display by emphasizing your latest accomplishments and listing the rest backward from there.
If you’re new to the field of consulting, you should consider going with the functional resume format. It makes the skills section the main part of your resume, which is great for entry-level candidates who lack professional experience. The downside is that it might run into issues with the ATS due to its different design.
The combination resume formatis another prominent format you can use for this purpose, and it’s generally reserved for highly experienced individuals. It combines the previous two formats to emphasize the candidate’s skills while describing each one with relevant professional accomplishments.
A visually striking layout is one of the best ways to get recruiters to read your consultant resume. What you need is a clear, professional document that preferably has all of the information on one page. Here are some tips to help you achieve that:
Bullet lists take up less space than blocks of text while being easier to read and conveying the same amount of information.
Reasonable margins (at least one inch) and plenty of white space between sections improve readability.
You should use resume-friendly fonts, such as Arial or Calibri. Avoid overly stylized typefaces that are hard to read.
The optimal values for font sizes are 10–12 pt for regular text and 14–16 pt for headings.
What Sections Should a Consultant Resume Contain?
The best way to ensure that you’ve given recruiters and potential employers all the information that they are looking for is to include mandatory sections, which are:
Once you’ve added all of those, you can spice things up with a few optional sections, such as:
Awards and certifications
Hobbies and interests
You can create a rough outline using these lists to make sure you don’t forget anything important when crafting your resume from scratch. Or you could take an even easier approach and use our resume builder.
It’s an intuitive yet feature-packed tool that has everything you need to craft a job-winning document. You can use it to change the entire layout with a click or two, adjust fonts and colors, and effortlessly put your information in predetermined blank spots. That’s way easier than using a random consultant resume template downloaded online.
Consultant Resume Contact Information
Adding your contact information to your consultant resume is as straightforward as it gets. You want to put your details at the top of the document—in your resume header—and include the following:
(Optional) LinkedIn profile
Let’s put that into practice and take a look at an example:
Contact Information Section
+ 804 260 0385
It’s important to be precise, formal, and relevant with your contact details. Your title should match the one in the job ad, your email needs to be professional, and you should proofread everything to ensure there are no typing mistakes.
Consultant Resume Objective or Summary
In addition to an organized format and a visually striking layout, one of the best ways to grab recruiters’ attention is with a well-written resume objective or summary. Think of it as a brief and appealing description of your consultant resume.
The goal of this section is to highlight your key strengths in 2–4 sentences and give the reader a taste of what you’re capable of. In the case of entry-level applicants, those key strengths would be their skills and drive, which they’d show by writing a consultant resume objective.
Experienced candidates are more likely to get hired if they can show off their work. This is why they should write a resume summary to highlight their most important achievements.
Consultant Resume Objective
Let’s see a proper consultant resume objective that emphasizes the candidate’s particular skills that recruiters might be looking for:
“Ambitious marketing specialist looking for an entry-level consultant position at [your company]. Seeking to leverage a passion for marketing, strong communication and analytical skills, and a commitment to staying up-to-date with the latest trends and technologies. Proficient in Facebook Ads, Google Ads, social media management, marketing funnels, and more.”
Now here’s a poorly written example that gives recruiters nothing to go off of:
“Recent marketing graduate looking to advance my career as a consultant.”
Consultant Resume Summary
You can impress potential employers right off the bat by demonstrating your notable accomplishments through an impactful consultant resume summary. Here’s a good example:
“Experienced marketing consultant with a proven track record of delivering successful marketing campaigns and driving revenue growth for more than 7 years. Notable achievements include launching a winning project that generated $5 million in revenue and leading a team that won several industry awards for marketing excellence. Looking to leverage skills and experience to build strong relationships with clients and stakeholders and boost your business growth.”
If you don’t include any noteworthy results, you’ll end up with a flat and uninspiring resume summary, like the following one:
“A marketing specialist with years of experience looking for a new job. Eager to take on challenging projects and help companies reach their goals.”
Consultant Resume Work Experience
Your past work performance is generally the best indicator of your competence, which is why recruiters and potential employers spend the most time examining this section.
Your work experience section should highlight the following details:
Company name and location
Start and end dates of employment
Achievements and results obtained
If you have multiple previous jobs to showcase, you should do so in reverse-chronological order.
For each previous role, you should include 3–5 bullet points that show your most prominent accomplishments. What you shouldn’t do is focus on responsibilities and everyday tasks since they are pretty much the same for everyone and won’t make you stand out.
Instead, you can demonstrate outstanding accomplishments obtained due to your skills. To have them create an even bigger impact, you should use precise numbers, statistics, and accomplishments for quantification.
Lastly, by including remarkable action verbs and power words instead of overused terms that most candidates put in their resumes, you can make yours catchier and more memorable. Some of these words that you could add are:
Consultant With No Experience
All the general tips outlined in the previous section can help you craft a stellar work experience section even if you’re an entry-level candidate. The only difference is that you’ll be using other activities, such as your internships, volunteer experience, freelance work, and similar.
Here’s a good example:
Business Consultant Intern
Business Consultant Intern
November 2021–August 2022
Assisted senior consultants in the development and implementation of strategic plans that resulted in a 10% revenue increase.
Collaborated with team members to streamline internal processes, reducing project turnaround time by 19%.
Conducted competitive analyses and provided recommendations to clients, resulting in a 7% increase in market share for one client.
Experienced consultants likely have a lot of achievements to show. In that case, they should focus only on the highest-quality ones instead of cluttering their work experience section with every minor task and accomplishment.
Let’s see that in an example:
Developed and implemented financial plans for clients, resulting in a 23% increase in assets under management.
Conducted comprehensive portfolio reviews for high-net-worth individuals, resulting in an average portfolio growth of 17%.
Created customized financial models for clients, boosting their average return on investment by 13%.
Consultant Resume Education Section
The education section is one of the simpler ones to add to your resume. You should include the following details:
The institution that issued it
Years of attendance
(Optional) Notable achievements such as relevant courses, extracurricular activities, high GPA, etc.
In practice, that looks like this:
Education Section Example
BSBA in General Business
University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR
Relevant coursework: Principles of Management, Business Statistics, Business Communication, Strategic Management
In general, you should only list your highest diploma. Moreover, you can include it even if you’re still studying. Simply say “current” instead of a graduation date, or put “expected” or “anticipated” next to it.
Consultant Resume Skills
Next to your work history and education, your consultant resume skills section is the most important one. Recruiters always look for candidates whose skill set is relevant to the job.
That’s why it’s important to figure out what those abilities are before adding them to your resume. You can do that easily by looking into the company and carefully reading the job advertisement.
After you’ve created a strong list of abilities, you should add them to your consultant resume in two ways:
Create a separate skills section where you’ll list your hard and soft skills. Keep in mind that the two groups should be separated since they are quite different.
Mention some of your most important abilities in your resume summary or objective and in your work experience section. You should connect them with relevant workplace achievements. That way, you substantiate your skills, making them genuine in the eyes of recruiters.
Hard skills are highly technical and position-specific. They can vary a lot between different consultants. Some of them that you can add to your resume are:
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
Soft skills are also known as "people skills." While they are often obtained through real-life experience, they can be just as important for your workplace efficiency. Some valuable soft skills to include in your consultant resume are:
Consultant Resume Optional Sections
Optional sections allow you to get a bit creative and show some personality with your consultant resume while still giving valuable information to recruiters.
Awards & Certifications
Has your work been recognized as exceptional and resulted in you getting valuable awards? Do you have relevant certifications that can add credibility to your already impressive skill set?
You should list both of these on your resume, including the name of the award or certification, the organization issuing it, and the date.
The importance of languages can vary from irrelevant to a must-have, depending on the line of work that you’re in and the specific position. When adding this section to your consultant resume, you should list the languages in order of competence, starting with the highest one.
The proficiency levels are:
Hobbies & Interests
Many candidates often overlook the hobbies and interests section because it usually isn’t directly connected with the profession. However, briefly mentioning something that you’re truly passionate about is one of the easiest ways to connect with recruiters and employers on a more personal level. That can even be a part of the conversation during your interview.
Should You Submit a Cover Letter With Your Consultant Resume?
You should definitely submit a cover letter that matches your consultant resume for optimal chances of success. There are multiple benefits to doing it, including:
Portraying yourself as a dedicated and hardworking individual
Using the document to talk more about your skills and experience
Ending your cover letter with a call to action to entice recruiters to contact you for further discussion.
Expert Tips for Creating a Consultant Resume
Let’s finish this comprehensive guide with a list of expert tips to help you perfect your resume:
While a PDF file helps preserve your consultant resume’s formatting no matter the device it’s viewed on, you should check if the company’s ATS can parse it. Otherwise, you should go with another file type.
Since your resume objective or summary should give a brief overview of the entire document, it’s often smartest to write them last.
If a job ad asks for proficiency in a specific language, you can put your language section near the top of your resume.
While your hobbies and interests don’t have to relate to the profession at all, it’s certainly a plus if they do. Additionally, they are all the more effective and memorable if they are uncommon and specific.
In closing, remember that crafting a consultant resume is a bit like putting a puzzle together. You need to carefully consider each piece and how it fits into the bigger picture.
With a bit of persistence and the expert advice given in this article, you can piece together a strong resume that showcases your skills and prowess in the best way possible.
So go forth and show the world what you’re made of. Happy job hunting!