Resume Work Experience: How to Write the Most Important Section on Your Resume

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October 23, 2023
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19
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3 key takeaways

  • What a resume "Work Experience" section is
  • Why the "Work Experience" section is so important
  • How to write your "Work Experience" section with the free Teal AI Resume Builder

Your resume "Work Experience" section is the bridge that builds the connection from everything you've done professionally to all that you're capable of in your next role.

In fact, it's the most vital section for highlighting how well you're qualified for a new position.

With that in mind, how can you showcase your work history in a way that reveals depth, relevance, and impact so you can apply for your next job with credibility, clarity, and confidence?  

What is a "Work Experience" section?

The "Work Experience" or "Work History" section of your resume showcases your professional background and employment history. It offers recruiters and hiring managers a comprehensive overview of your relevant work experiences, including previous roles, companies you've worked for, responsibilities, and accomplishments.

Your work experience on a resume typically follows your contact information and professional summary at the top. It helps hiring managers assess your qualifications, gauge your level of expertise, and evaluate how well you align with the requirements of the role you're applying for on a granular level.

Why resume work experience is so important

Your "Work Experience" section is the most important one on your resume because it...

  • Validates claims: Using specific examples of your past achievements, impact, personal projects, responsibilities, and experience on a resume verifies you can and have done what you claim to—adding credibility to your qualifications and differentiating you from other applicants.
  • Demonstrates relevance: Elements of your work history, like past professional titles and achievements at previous employers, allow a hiring manager to determine whether or not your previous roles and professional experience align with what they're looking for.
  • Shows career progression: Have you taken on increasing levels of responsibility? Gained new skills? Executed significant accomplishments? Listing your work experiences in reverse chronological order clearly shows your career trajectory and how you've advanced. 
  • Highlights transferable skills: Transferable skills are those you can apply across different roles or industries (like leadership, problem-solving, or project management). Demonstrating these skills in your work experience section can make you a more flexible candidate who's capable of doing a job.
  • Supports skill matching: Employers often use manual scanning or an applicant tracking system (ATS) to match your relevant skills and experiences to the job posting. A well-crafted "Work Experience" section that includes keywords and accomplishments from the job description can increase the chances of standing out as qualified.

Create your work experience now

The free Teal AI Resume Builder delivers one platform to write, update, analyze, and improve your resume work experience.

Build a comprehensive work history, then choose the most relevant experiences for every role you apply to.

And if you're feeling stuck, use the Achievement Assistant or generative AI to create custom, metric-driven achievements in just minutes.

When work experience matters most, present it best with Teal.

Structuring your work experience for a resume

When structuring the "Work Experience" section on a resume, there are a few formats for you to consider: a chronological resume format, a hybrid (or skills-based) format, and a functional resume format. The best resume format depends largely on your relevant work history.

A chronological resume format (also known as the reverse chronological format) is the most popular and widely recognized because it presents your work history clearly and concisely.

While most job seekers opt for reverse chronological order, a skills-based format might be worth considering if you're a career pivot or have significant employment gaps.

A skills-based resume emphasizes your hard skills near the top of your resume—directly beneath your professional summary—then moves to work experience or other sections with relevant details. 

A functional resume emphasizes skills over accomplishments and jobs; however, do your best to steer clear of this format to provide the most clarity possible and avoid confusion. 

What should resume work experience include?

Including the same information for each company for every role maintains consistency throughout your resume—presenting a clear and structured overview of your professional journey.

This basic information should include:

1. Company name

Clearly state the name of each company or organization you worked for to offer context about the work environments you have been a part of.

2. Job title

Your job title or position clarifies your level of responsibility and your role within an organization.

3. Location

Whether you made the commute to a physical office or were fully remote, this information is valuable (especially if the potential future employer is considering candidates based on proximity or remote work experience).

4. Dates of employment

The duration of your employment for each role, including the start and end dates, offers insight into the length of your experience and tenure with each company.

5. 3-5 work experience achievements per role

Each resume job description should include 3-5 achievements. These achievements should be structured as bullet points and provide tangible evidence of your success by showcasing the impact, contributions, and value you brought to an organization.

Tailoring your resume work experience to a job description

One of the most important things to remember when writing work experience for a resume is that you want to tailor your resume to align with the requirements of a specific job. 

Aligning your experience with each specific role emphasizes your relevant qualifications and understanding of the job description (and increases your chances of landing an interview). Try not to submit the same resume for every job you apply for.

Instead, generate your resume bullet points for every unique job.

Start by researching the company and carefully studying the job description or job ad.

Then include keywords and the other important language you find in your bullet points (and in your professional summary, "Education" section, and skills, too).

Sound time-consuming? It doesn't have to be.

The Teal Job Application Tracker and AI Resume Builder pull the hard skills, soft skills, and other language from the job description so you can easily plug them into your resume work experiences where they have the most impact. 

Then, use Matching Mode to receive a Match Score, which assesses how closely the skills and keywords in your resume align with those in the job description.

You want your Match Score to be as close to 80% as possible. You can incorporate more keywords from a job listing into your content to improve your score—creating a targeted resume.

Resume work experience aligned with a job description
Get a Match Score to see how your work experience stacks up.

5 types of work experience for a resume

Quantifiable achievements

Numbers and metrics (like percentages or monetary) demonstrate quantifiable impact on your resume. For example, "Exceeded sales targets by 20% with..." "Increased revenue by $500k through..." "Reduced spending by $25k after..." or "Improved efficiency by 10% as a result of... ."

Project success

Make a point to incorporate successful projects or initiatives emphasize your day-to-day responsibilities and the impact of your work. Outline the goals, challenges, and outcomes to give a more detailed look into your ability to drive results.

Process improvements

Improvements or optimizations resulting in increased productivity, cost savings, or enhanced quality illustrate problem-solving skills and your ability to foster positive change.

Leadership and team contributions

Showcasing growth and advancement by highlighting instances where you used strong leadership skills or made influential contributions to team efforts shows your ability to take on greater responsibilities and make a meaningful impact as you advance on your professional journey.

Awards and recognition

Awards, accolades, or honors you've received during your work experience offer insight into how your peers and leadership view you. This could include Employee of the Month, Team Player of the Year, or recognition for outstanding performance or contributions.

Resume work experience for non-traditional job seekers

Suppose you're a job seeker with non-traditional work experience (like freelance projects, part-time jobs, entrepreneurial ventures, exclusive summer job experience, or relevant volunteer work). In that case, you might face unique challenges when figuring out how to how to write experience in your resume that presents your qualifications in a way that helps you stand out from other candidates.

Below are some strategic elements you can include to highlight your qualifications:

Emphasize transferable skills: Focus on the key skills you gained from your non-traditional work experience that apply to your desired role.

Showcase project outcomes: Include projects in a resume or initiatives you undertook during your non-traditional work experience and emphasize the outcomes or impact achieved.

Demonstrate entrepreneurial mindset: If you were involved in entrepreneurial ventures or freelance work, emphasize your entrepreneurial mindset and showcase qualities like creativity, resourcefulness, self-motivation, and the ability to work independently.

Emphasize continuous learning: Highlight any additional courses, certifications, or workshops you've completed to enhance your skills and knowledge. This demonstrates your commitment to professional development and willingness to acquire new competencies.

How to write resume work experience

Understanding how to write work experience in a resume can make all of the difference when it comes to effectively presenting your qualifications with impact. Teal can help! Just follow the steps below to use Teal's Achievement Assistant within the AI Resume Builder to write your work history—quickly and effectively. 

1. If you still need to sign up, create a free Teal account.

2. Next, log in to your account and click the "Resume Builder" icon in the left navigation bar. Then, select the resume you want to work with or click "New Resume" at the top right.

Adding resume work experience
Create a new resume, or work in an existing document.

3. After that, scroll down to the "Work Experience" section. Then click "Add Work Experience."

Adding a resume work experience section
Add your resume "Work Experience" section.

4. Now add the job you want to create achievements for. Every previous job you list (as well as your current position) should be consistent.

5. Finally, to create your achievement bullet points, you have two options. You can navigate to the Assistant tab at the top right to work through what you did, what metric you improved when, and how your action connects to your strategy.

Adding resume work experience achievements
Create metric-driven resume work experience achievements.

Or just click the "Generate with AI" button.

Work experience resume examples

You understand why listing your work experience on a resume is important. You know that a hiring manager and most recruiters are looking for content tailored to the job description. You're ready to write a strong employment history that includes your most recent job, relevant past jobs, and the impact you've had in a way that lands you a job interview. So now it's time to dive into some resume accomplishment examples that'll inspire you and grab the attention of hiring managers and any prospective employer.

Student

Junior Project

Economics Group Project 

April 2023

  • Collaborated with a team of four members to develop and execute a comprehensive economics project, resulting in a remarkable achievement of 97% grade.
  • Researched and analyzed 200+ economic theories, market trends, and financial data to support project objectives and provide valuable insights.
  • Led the team in creating a detailed financial report, demonstrating strong analytical skills and effective communication to present complex economic concepts in a clear and concise manner.

Social Media Coordinator

Brewster's Beans Coffee Shop

12/2022 – 12/2023

  • Successfully managed social media platforms for Brewster's Beans Coffee Shop, a vibrant local coffee house with a dedicated community following.
  • Developed and implemented engaging social media strategies, resulting in a 40% increase in overall online engagement and a 25% growth in followers within six months.
  • Created and curated visually appealing content, including captivating images and compelling captions, to enhance the coffee shop's brand image and showcase its unique offerings to a broader audience.

Entry-level role

HR Assistant

09/2022 – Present

Talentaire

  • Spearheaded successful interview processes, conducted all hiring manager communication, led orientation events, and managed onboarding activities for more than 20 new hires, enhancing morale and performance in the organization.
  • Introduced a comprehensive employee recognition system, resulting in improved employee morale and a reduction of turnover rate by 20%
  • Facilitated the design and execution of an employee communication program, helping to improve two-way dialogue between senior management and the workforce.

Sales Associate

07/2022 – 09/2022

SalesPro Solutions

  • Conducted market research to identify potential customers and target markets, resulting in a 40% increase in sales opportunities.
  • Scheduled and conducted sales meetings with potential customers to present products or services, resulting in a 50% increase in contract wins.
  • Maintained accurate and up-to-date records of sales activities, customer satisfaction, and customer interactions in a CRM system, resulting in a 25% increase in sales efficiency

Mid-level role

Email Marketing Specialist

03/2020 – 03/2022

Cormac, Inc.

  • Managed email list segmentation and targeting, resulting in an 18% increase in email engagement and a 37% increase in conversions
  • Collaborated with content team to develop personalized email content, resulting in a 25% increase in open rates and a 15% increase in click-through rates.
  • Developed and maintained email marketing best practices, resulting in a 30% increase in overall campaign effectiveness and a 10% increase in customer satisfaction.

Software Engineering Manager

03/2019 – 03/2020

CyberNova Solutions

  • Developed and maintained a complex software application that supported a user base of over 500,000, resulting in a 20% increase in revenue over one year.
  • Identified and resolved a critical software issue causing system crashes, resulting in a 50% reduction in crashes and a 17% increase in system reliability.
  • Collaborated with a team of developers to implement a new software architecture that improved scalability by 30% and reduced server costs by 25%.

Senior-level role

Senior Digital Advertising Manager

03/2022 – Present

AdVantage Marketing Solutions

  • Leads a team of 125 employees with a consistent 92% retention rate.
  • Developed and executed a comprehensive advertising campaign for a new product launch, resulting in a 25% increase in sales within the first month.
  • Analyzed and reported on the effectiveness of advertising campaigns, identifying areas for improvement and implementing changes that resulted in a 15% increase in click-through rates.
  • Negotiated contracts with digital media outlets, securing a 10% discount on advertising rates and maximizing the budget for the campaign.

Senior AI Product Manager

07/2019 – Present

DecTech Solutions

  • Developed and launched an AI-based product that increased customer engagement by 25% and generated $2M in revenue within the first year.
  • Implemented a pricing strategy that resulted in a 15% increase in profit margins and a 10% increase in customer retention.
  • Conducted market research and analysis to identify emerging trends and opportunities, resulting in the development of a new product line that generated $1M in revenue within the first six months.

Career pivot

Marketing Generalist 

MJG Software

1/2018 – 9/2022

  • Demonstrated exceptional leadership skills by effectively managing and mentoring a team of 11 marketing professionals, fostering collaboration, and achieving 96% of team goals.
  • Developed and executed innovative marketing strategies for MJG Software, resulting in a 40% increase in customer acquisition and a 25% improvement in customer retention.
  • Utilized excellent communication and interpersonal skills to collaborate with 4 cross-functional teams, including sales, product development, and customer support, ensuring alignment and consistency in marketing efforts.
  • Proven ability to adapt to changing priorities and work in a fast-paced environment, consistently meeting 100% of deadlines and delivering high-quality marketing materials.

Unconventional professional experience

Volunteer Work Experience

St. Joseph's Shelter

1/2021 – Present

  • Assists in providing essential services to over 200 unhoused individuals on a weekly basis, offering compassionate support and fostering a safe environment.
  • Collaborates with a team of dedicated volunteers to serve meals to an average of 100 individuals daily, ensuring that nutritional needs are met and promoting overall well-being.
  • Implemented a volunteer work outreach program that increased the shelter's community engagement by 30%, actively connecting with local businesses and organizations to secure essential donations and resources for unhoused individuals in need.

Part-time Work Experience

Independent Drone Pilot

2014 – Present

  • Independently operates drones for aerial photography and videography projects. 
  • Utilizes creative flight techniques to showcase scenic landscapes, urban architecture, and special events, fostering a deep passion for aerial storytelling. 
  • Published a portfolio of 50 high-resolution aerial photographs on personal blog, garnering over 10,000 views and 500 social media shares.
  • Collaborates with fellow drone enthusiasts through online communities using strong interpersonal skills and building a supportive network within the drone community. 
  • Contributed to organizing and hosting two drone photography workshops, attracting over 30 participants and receiving an average rating of 4.8 out of 5 for educational value.

If you're looking for more inspiration, check out 1,300+ resume examples to use as a guide.


Bonus:
Documenting your work experience over time

Your job history isn't just the culmination of your job responsibilities; it's a comprehensive overview of your genuine impact. But when it's time to create or update your resume—whether you need a new job immediately or are considering quitting your job without another lined up—how do you remember everything you've done?

Starting today, schedule a consistent time each month to write down all of your past accomplishments over the last 30 days. And don't just wait until you've done something "big." Document your day-to-day activities. They likely contribute to something very significant.

@teal_hq If you’ve ever found yourself stumbling across a great job opportunity then scrambling to apply just to find your resume is all out of date here’s a great monthly habit to get into. If you set aside some time at the end of the month to document your work wins, when it comes time, updating your resume will be much easier. #resumetips #resumebullets #careeradvice #careertok #jobsearch ♬ Aesthetic - Tollan Kim

Create your resume work experience with Teal

You are more than just your job title and a list of responsibilities or job duties. In fact, you've had some incredible professional accomplishments.

Your work experience on a resume offers potential employers insight into the impact of those accomplishments—helping solidify you as a qualified candidate ready to take on new responsibilities.

Don't wait to start creating your "Work Experience" section until you find a job opening or feel pressured. Instead, use the Teal AI Resume Builder to craft measurable, metric-driven achievements so that when you're ready to apply, your resume is, too.

Start showcasing your value with Teal today.

Frequenty Asked Questions

Kayte Grady

Kayte, the Senior Copywriter at Teal, creates compelling content that builds connection, trust, and brand loyalty to drive conversions. With a data-driven approach to writing and a love of people, she's found growth and camaraderie in tech—a pleasant surprise given her never-ending devotion to the paper calendar.

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