How Many Bullet Points Should I List per Job on a Resume?
Bullet points. They may not sound exciting, but they are useful organizational tools.
When it comes to resume writing, incorporating bullet points is an effective way to emphasize the most crucial information in your work history—creating a hierarchy of ideas and making it easier for readers to navigate the content. This means hiring managers can scan through your skills and qualifications quickly and move to the interviewing stage with an organized and clear understanding of your fit for the position.
So let’s dive in and explore your resume and how many bullet points per job on resume you should actually include, and some best practices for writing resume bullet points that are relevant, concise, and impactful.
3 key takeaways
- The importance of bullet points (and when to use them)
- How to use bullet points to make your resume experience, skills, and key accomplishments stand out
- Using tools like Teal to help you create a bullet list for your resume sections
What are resume bullet points and when do you use them
Resume bullet points are concise statements that summarize the most important information about your career history.
Each bullet point is presented in a list format and is preceded by a small symbol like a dot or a dash.
Effective bullet points present information in a structured and organized manner. For example, in the work experience section of your resume, add bullet points underneath your job title to highlight key responsibilities and relevant accomplishments. Similarly, in the skills section, bullet points can be used to showcase the key skills that make you the best fit for the job.
The best time to use bullet points on a resume is when presenting lists or information that needs to be showcased in a concise and easy-to-read format.
How to structure resume bullet points
When do you know to add more bullet points or incorporate fewer bullet points? How many bullet points do you use per resume section? Structuring each bullet point with only the most necessary and compelling information will help hiring managers connect your experience with the job description.
As you structure your resume bullet list, follow these tips:
- Keep the number of bullet points between three and five per section, or 15 total on your resume
- Limit each bullet point to one line as often as possible
- List bullet points based on your most impressive and relevant information
- Instead of listing your job duties, structure your bullets to focus on specific accomplishments and key skills
Let’s say you have your sights set on a nonprofit executive director role and are using your experience as a chief operating officer to campaign for the opportunity. In this situation, your bullet points would like something like this:
- Managed a $72 million budget resulting in successful financial planning and forecasting.
- Increased grant application acceptance rate by 11%, resulting in additional funding for critical programs and initiatives.
- Increased productivity and successful project completion within established timelines to 97% through the successful leadership and management of 23 direct reports.
Notice how the first bullet point communicates the biggest responsibility related to your job duties, followed by information that is relevant to senior or leadership positions that look for metrics in addition to your relevant experience.
Resume sections that need bullet points
Bullet points are an effective way to keep your resume concise and easy to read. However, not all sections on a resume require bullet points.
Your work experience and skills section are best presented with bullet points. Incorporating bullet points in these sections helps make the information easily scannable and highlights the most important achievements, responsibilities, and hard and soft skills.
Bullet points, however, may not be necessary for every listing. Read on to learn the best way to use bullet points for unique resume sections.
A professional summary on a resume provides a brief overview of your skills, experiences, and career goals in a concise and compelling way. It’s typically the first section of the resume that a recruiter or hiring manager will read, so it needs to make a strong impression.
Your resume's summary should be tailored to the specific job and industry you're targeting—highlighting the most relevant skills and experiences for the position.
The use of bullet points is appropriate in this section when listing key achievements or skills. But it’s important to avoid using too many bullet points in the summary as this can make it look cluttered and difficult to read.
To best structure your summary with bullet points, use these tips:
- Keep it brief: Your professional summary should be no more than a few sentences and definitely no more than three or four bullet points. This is not the place to detail your entire work history or every achievement.
- Use keywords: Incorporate relevant keywords from the job description into your bullet points to ensure your resume is optimized for applicant tracking systems (ATS) and the language resonates with the reader.
- Highlight your unique selling points: Use bullet points to highlight what differentiates you from other candidates. What key strengths and accomplishments make you the best fit for the job?
Your work history section is the best place to use bullet points on your resume. It's the meat of your entire career and what hiring managers look to when determining if you can carry out the job.
When organizing work experience on your resume, use ChatGPT resume prompts and keep these tips in mind:
- Only include information that's relevant to the job you are applying to
- Review the job description for keywords you can incorporate into your bullet points
- Use metrics, examples, and accomplishments
You see, there is such a thing as too many bullet points on a resume, so if you’re having trouble cutting down, always compare the points you have to the job listing.
Which bullet points match the role best?
Customize Your Resume Bullet Points to the Job with Teal:
If you want to save time, the Teal Chrome Extension offers a list of the top five skills in any job description. And the AI Resume Builder compares important keywords in the job description to your resume with an analysis mode that provides a Match Score.
Want to know how well your resume matches up to a job? Run the comparison below to get your score.
You want your Match Score to be as close to 80% as possible. If you aren't quite there yet, you can incorporate more keywords into your content to improve your score and create a targeted resume.
Potential employers look for job candidates that have experience and skills that best match the job opening, so highlight the information that best coincides with the role.
Sign up for Teal for free today and try the Chrome Extension and AI Resume Builder to see which of your skills and experiences match the job description best and improve your chances of landing an interview.
The education section on a resume gives insight into your academic background—which can be relevant to certain positions.
This section typically includes the name of the degree, institution, and graduation date. Including any relevant academic honors, research, or coursework can give you a boost and help you stand out to hiring managers (especially if you’re creating a resume with little to no job experience).
Not sure if you should incorporate bullet points into your education section? Below are some examples to see if it’s the right fit for you:
- Relevant coursework: Data Structures, Algorithms, Software Development, Database Systems, Operating Systems
- Completed capstone project on developing a web application using React and Node.js
- Participated in an internship program at Google, contributing to the development of a mobile app and gaining experience in agile methodology and software testing
- Presented research paper on the impact of social media on mental health at a student conference
The skills section on your resume demonstrates you have the right capabilities and proficiencies to perform the job successfully. Potential employers look for specific skills that match the requirements of the job. A well-crafted skills section can help you stand out from other applicants.
In your bullet points, it’s important to use industry-specific keywords to ensure your skills resonate with potential employers. If you need help deciding which keywords to use, the free Teal Job Application Tracker highlights the top hard skills, soft skills, and other key language from any job you save. Sign up for Teal today to see for yourself!
When structuring bullet points for your skills section, it’s best to:
- Feature skills that help you stand out (any skills that need a specific certification, for example)
- Connect your skills to the job you are applying to
- Include a mix of hard and soft skills
A strong skills section can make a positive first impression, increasing the chances of landing an interview and, ultimately, the job.
Best practices for writing resume bullet points
Being aware of best practices for writing resume bullet points can significantly impact the success of your job application.
Here’s the thing, It isn’t just about how many bullet points per job on resume; it’s about making it easy for an employer to see who you are and what you can do—quickly. And there are a few effective strategies that are simple to implement to transform your content.
When using bullet points on your resume, try the following:
Showcase your strongest bullet point first
Don't save the best for last.
Always put your strongest bullet point first—whether in your work experience section, skills list, or education section.
As hiring managers review multiple applications from job seekers, they have to be efficient and scan through resumes quickly. If your bullet list showcases your strongest information last, a hiring manager can easily miss that information.
Use active voice
Always use active voice when writing your resume and cover letter.
Active voice is when the sentence’s subject performs the action. An active voice cuts out the fluff, giving you more space to work with.
An example of active voice is “I managed 10 employees.” In the sentence, you are the subject, and “managing” is the action being performed.
Alternately, passive voice is when the verb acts on the subject. In passive voice, the above sentence turns into “Ten employees were managed by me.”
Include action verbs
Just as important as using active voice are the resume action verbs you choose for your resume to lend power to your sentences. Action verbs give weight to your resume bullet points. They help convey a sense of action, accomplishment, and impact.
Using a strong action word at the beginning of bullet points can make the sentence more engaging and attention-grabbing—helping put a spotlight on your achievements and skills.
A few action verbs to consider for your bullet points:
Incorporating keywords into a resume is an important resume-writing strategy. Not only do keywords help grab attention, they’ll also help you create an optimized ATS resume.
An ATS or applicant tracking system is software used by many companies to help streamline the application process. Often, recruiters or hiring managers instruct the system to scan for specific keywords that speak to an applicant's qualifications—helping them find and organize the most qualified candidates quickly.
To identify which keywords to use:
- Carefully read the job description.
- Identify the specific skills, experiences, and qualifications the potential employer is looking for.
- Research industry-specific terminology.
- Incorporate the most relevant keywords into your resume
Or, you can skip those steps and use the Teal Job Application Tracker to pull the relevant information for you with the click of a button. It’s totally free, so you’ve got nothing to lose. Sign up today!
Remember to use keywords in a natural way throughout the resume, including in the professional summary, skills section, and work experience bullet points.
Adding key metrics into a resume can help you stand out from other job seekers, as metrics are measurable evidence of achievements and impact in previous roles.
When coming up with your metrics, try to incorporate as many of the following as possible:
- Revenue generated
- Cost savings
- Percentage improvements
- Employees managed
- Time savings
By incorporating metrics as bullet points into your resume, you show hiring managers you have a track record of success.
How to customize your resume bullet points
Customized bullet points can highlight your most relevant skills and experiences, making it easier for a potential employer to see how your skills and experience can contribute to the company's success. So how do you do it?
1. Review a job description
The job listing is your North Star when it comes to crafting your resume bullet points.
The first step is to carefully review the job description of the position you're applying for.
Pay attention to the required skills, responsibilities, and qualifications. Identify what the employer is looking for in a candidate and take note of any specific keywords that are frequently mentioned.
2. Identify how your work history aligns with the job description
As you compile your experience and skills, compare them with the job post. Which aspect of your career fits best? Pull those and focus on them throughout your resume.
Look for transferable skills and relevant experience that you can highlight. It’s also key to identify your most impressive accomplishments. Then, consider how they can be presented in a way that showcases your ability to create a positive impact in the specific role you’re applying to.
With Teal's AI Resume Builder, you can index and update details about your entire career in Teal's Career History. When it comes time to customize new resume bullet points, all your information is in one place.
3. Use Teal to identify top keywords in the job description (& incorporate them!)
Teal is a helpful tool that can assist you in identifying the top keywords used in the job description.
Use the Teal Chrome Extension to view the top five skills listed (or the AI Resume Builder to see them all). Then add them in a way that makes sense and accurately represents your skills and experience.
Be strategic and make sure they're relevant and add value to your resume. (And remember to use action verbs to start your bullet points and quantify your accomplishments where possible—making them stand out.)
Resume examples with bullet points
Now that you understand more about resume bullets, let's take a look at some examples.
Resume bullets in a Professional Summary
Highly skilled AI Ethics Specialist with 4 years of experience in developing and implementing ethical frameworks for AI-driven products and services with a proven track record in:
- Increasing customer trust by 25%
- Reducing potential ethical issues by 50%
- Aligning ethical considerations with business objectives.
In addition, I have exceptional skills in collaborating with cross-functional teams, educating stakeholders, and identifying and addressing potential ethical issues in AI systems.
Resume bullets in Work History
Marketing Manager | Chromatic Dynamics | 2/2023 - Present
- Executed tasks effectively and efficiently, resulting in a 15% increase in departmental productivity
- Demonstrated strong ability to do quality work for the usual projects that an individual would be assigned at this level
- Developed and executed brand strategies, resulting in a 10% increase in brand recognition and customer loyalty
Resume bullets in Skills and Competencies
- Cloud computing platforms (AWS, Azure, GCP)
- Disaster recovery planning
- Cloud deployment automation
- Infrastructure as Code (IaC)
- Cloud security and compliance (HIPAA)
- Database management and optimization
- Performance monitoring and optimization
- Technical support and guidance
- Cross-functional collaboration
- Synchronous communication
- Asynchronous communication
- Version control (Git, SVN)
- Agile methodologies (Scrum, Kanban)
Resume bullets in Education
- Bachelor of Science, Marketing | Arizona State University
- Completed relevant coursework in Digital Marketing, including courses on Data Analytics, Social Media Marketing, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and Web Design.
- Completed capstone project focused on developing a comprehensive digital marketing strategy for local small business. Conducted market research, developed a content marketing plan, and executed a social media campaign resulting in a 20% increase in website traffic and a 15% increase in sales
Craft custom resume bullet points quickly with Teal
By signing up for a free Teal account, you have access to tools that level up your application package.
Your resume is strengthened when you analyze your resume's effectiveness with Teal's guidance. Receive tips on how to make your bullet points more effective, see if you have enough measurable results in your resume, and check your resume's structure for any issues.
With Teal, users also get to tap into artificial intelligence functionalities, which can help you organize your bullet points so they are effective and eye-catching.
Sign up for a free Teal account here, or join Teal+ to enhance your resume.