The right accomplishments for your resume can make all the difference in the world

When employers look at your resume, what do they see? Do they see a dependable, run-of-the-mill employee with a track record of fulfilling responsibilities, or a dynamic, results-oriented worker with real, measurable accomplishments? Truly compelling resumes will always showcase you as that second type of worker - and for good reason. That's why it's so important to know how to create great accomplishments for your resume.

In this post, we'll explain what resume accomplishments are designed to do and why it's so important to include good accomplishments in your resume. We'll also offer some advice about where and how you should include them and provide tips to help you highlight your own accomplishments. Finally, we'll examine 47 examples of job accomplishments for a resume.

What are resume accomplishments?

So, what are resume accomplishments, anyway? Put simply, they're things that you've achieved in your previous jobs. In fact, achievement is another word for accomplishments on a resume. However, it's important to understand that achievements are not simply things that you did. Instead, they are quantifiable - measurable - accomplishments that added real value to your team and employer.

Of course, many people simply list their job duties in their resume and, for some professions, that may be all you need to land the job. However, most employers are less interested in reading some dry recitation of your previous job responsibilities than they are in seeing concrete examples of how you can benefit their company. Using the right accomplishments for your resume can help to illustrate that benefit.

The reality is that every job candidate with work experience has had job responsibilities. If that's all you list on your resume, then you'll always struggle to stand out from your competition. By including the right accomplishments for your resume, you can deliver a more compelling narrative that showcases you as the best person for the job.

Use numbers to showcase value

You might be wondering what we mean by “quantifiable” or “measurable” accomplishments. The easiest way to understand this concept is to think in terms of real numbers that demonstrate value. For example, you could list an accomplishment that looks like this:

  • Led a team of salespeople

Any hiring manager who looked at that achievement might be impressed that you were in some type of leadership role, but they would also likely wonder what you did with that responsibility. What impact did you have on the team's success? Now consider this example:

  • Successfully led a 12-person sales team that increased quarterly sales by 12%, reduced client attrition by 32%, and enhanced division profitability by 19%

If you were a hiring manager, which one of those examples would capture your interest? The second one, right? And the reason why is easy to understand; by including real numbers that demonstrate real value, you can help the employer better understand the benefits you can provide to their company.

Why is it important to include accomplishments in your resume?

To fully understand why accomplishments for your resume are so important, let's summarize some of the key benefits that they can provide for your job search efforts. For example:

Using real numbers is the best way to demonstrate your impact

While some accomplishments may not always be easy to quantify in this way, any achievement that illustrates real value is always going to grab attention. Those real numbers that you use to measure your results are a powerful way to showcase the positive impact you've made throughout your career.

Quantifiable achievements are more likely to make a real impression

It's also important to ensure that your resume makes a great first impression - and one that lasts longer than the time it takes to read your resume summary. Carefully crafted accomplishments for your resume can help you to ensure that you make the right impression, so that employers who read your resume walk away thinking about the type of value you can add to their enterprise.

Including these types of accomplishments showcases your professionalism

Of course, the simple act of taking the time to write down your measurable accomplishments will say a lot about your commitment to professionalism. When an employer reads these types of resume achievements, they will recognize you as someone who is committed to results. They'll also have confidence that you understand the importance of producing real, measurable value.

Where and how do you include resume achievements?

Before we look at our tips for creating accomplishments for your resume, it might be a good idea to focus on the best place to list these achievements and the right format to use. There are only two good places to incorporate these accomplishments in your resume. The first place is within the body of your resume summary paragraph. The second is in your work experience section.

Including accomplishments for your resume in your summary

Your summary statement is basically an elevator pitch that goes right below your contact information on the resume. This short statement should be designed to highlight your major qualifications and provide a “hook” that entices employers to read through the rest of your resume. By including a great measurable achievement in this paragraph, you can immediately capture that employer's attention. For example:

Dynamic Human Resources Manager with 9 years of experience in mid-size and large enterprise environments. Successfully managed employee relations in a 100-employee financial firm, reducing employee onboarding time by 15%, achieving a 92% issue-resolution rate, and reducing attrition by 22%.

As you can see, the inclusion of a measurable achievement within that summary paragraph can provide the employer with some immediate and concrete information about your capabilities and potential value. It's just enough to make any hiring manager want to learn more about the type of benefits you can provide as an employee.

How to include accomplishments for your resume in your summary

Including this type of achievement in your summary paragraph is simple. You just take one of your most notable achievements and add it to the summary section. Unlike most of the achievements listed on your resume, however, this one should just be included within the paragraph. There's no need to separate it with a bullet point. Save that for the work experience accomplishments!

Including accomplishments for your resume in your work experience section

Of course, most of the accomplishments for your resume are going to be located within your work experience section. In fact, you should plan to include several achievements for each job you list in that section. While there's no hard and fast rule for how many accomplishments you can list, it is typically a good idea to include at least three or four for each position.

How to include accomplishments for your resume in your work experience section

The process for including measurable accomplishments for your resume in your work experience section is not as difficult as it might seem. Simply add a series of achievements for each job that you've held over the last ten years, right below the basic details you provide about that position (company name, job title, dates of employment).

Make sure that you draw attention to these accomplishments by listing them in bullet point form. That will enable hiring managers to focus on each achievement and ensures that the information on your resume is easy to follow.

Tips for creating accomplishments for your resume

By now, you're probably ready to learn how to craft powerful accomplishments for your resume. We've compiled some simple tips to help you get started.

Make a list of your achievements

Before you can write a resume-ready accomplishment bullet point, you need to identify your achievements. Suitable accomplishments for your resume can include:

  • Making or saving the company money

  • Exceeding expectations

  • Improving customer experience

  • Introducing innovation

  • Leading a team that achieved positive, measurable results

  • Reducing inefficiencies

While it's tempting to focus on monetary value, it's vital to recognize that there are many ways to provide benefits to an employer. For example, you may have accomplished something that saved time, or reduced costs. These achievements can all be enticing for prospective employers.

Remember also that there are different ways to measure the value of your achievements. You may want to quantify some achievements in terms of monetary value by citing specific dollar amounts. Other achievements are best measured as a function of time or as a percentage of increase or decrease.

Include context

Each accomplishment also needs to provide enough information to give needed context to the achievement. If you simply say that you saved the company $10,000, that's not enough context to make any sort of positive impression on an employer. However, if you say that you reorganized the sales process to reduce inefficiencies, saving the company $10,000 a year, that explains not only what you did but how you did it.

Add keywords

Your accomplishments can also be a great place to include relevant keywords in your resume. You can find those keywords in the job posting you're targeting, since they are primarily related to things like skills and other qualifications. 

Make sure that you use those keywords exactly as you find them in the job posting. That can help to ensure that any applicant tracking system, or ATS, that the company is using will find your resume. This automated screening process will scan your resume in search of those keywords, so including them is one of the easiest ways to improve your likelihood of success.

Challenge, Action, Result

To further simplify this stage, you can use a simple step-by-step process that is often used in job interviews - the CAR method. CAR stands for Challenge, Action, and Result. Simply think about the problem you were tasked with resolving, the action you took, and the results you obtained.

Accomplishments for your resume: 47 examples

And now for the main event: our sample list of accomplishments for a resume. Below are 47 examples of achievements you can use in your resume, separated by job role. Feel free to modify and adapt any of them to your situation!

1.     Student examples

  • Increased readership by 23% while serving as Editor-in-Chief of university newspaper

  • Acquired real-world experience in an internship at XYZ Corp during senior year of college, with management praising commitment and attitude 

  • Established and ran a successful student events society that attracted 150 members in its first 6 months

  • Volunteered at a local animal hospital part-time, while maintaining 3.9 GPA

2.     Customer service examples

  • Resolved customer complaints with a reported 98% satisfaction rate.

  • Led effort to increase upsell rates by 10% in 2022 and 2023

  • Revitalized retention outreach program, increasing customer retention by 11% over two quarters

  • Implemented a customer response program that reduced response time by 20%, resulting in 22% improvement in client retention

3.     Teacher and educational examples

  • Introduced a knowledge-based learning program that increased class GPA by an average of 13%

  • Managed classrooms of 25+ students, maintaining 92% overall attendance rate

  • Led a school-wide effort to focus on individualized learning, which increased pass rate by 20%

  • Created an innovative parent-teacher online interface that improved parent engagement by 30%, with a 20% boost in student performance

4.     Marketing examples

  • Led a social media reorganization that increased online customer engagement by 40%

  • Introduced marketing campaigns that increased market share by 12%, while enhancing reported brand loyalty by 15%

  • Re-energized online marketing by doubling company's digital content output with new landing pages, regular blog postings, and social media interactions.

  • Redesigned the company website, increasing customer engagement and sales conversions by 30%

  • Deployed an email engagement strategy that expanded customer lists by 300% in six months, followed by a rewards program that increased sales and customer interactions by 23%

5.     Finance and accounting examples

  • Oversaw a team of Accountants tasked with managing a $2 million budget

  • Modernized the company's financial reporting processes, reducing redundancies by 23% and lowering labor input by 12%

  • Managed a financial team responsible for overseeing project budgets valued at more than $400,000

  • Led a training process that onboarded more than 40 new Bank Tellers over a five-year period

6.     Project manager examples

  • Oversaw implementation of a performance management process that boosted productivity by 22%

  • Led a workplace safety overhaul effort that reduced site injuries by 33% over six months

  • Successfully completed 9 projects worth more than $4,000,000 over the last two years

  • Delivered a business-critical IT initiative within a challenging 3-month deadline, 6% under budget

7.     IT examples

  • Led an effort to integrate a new network system that reduced downtime and repairs by 18%

  • Implemented a Lean training program that reduced labor costs by 8% while increasing profitability by 9%

  • Oversaw updates to obsolete equipment, replaced energy-inefficient machines, and lowered yearly energy bills by 11%

  • Efficiently managed the departmental budget, negotiating with vendors to reduce annual supply costs by 10%

8.     Software Programmer examples

  • Led a team that migrated legacy systems to new technology, improving sustainability and scalability, while reducing downtime and IT troubleshooting calls

  • Successfully managed troubleshooting efforts to eliminate a critical bug responsible for software crashes, reducing failures by 90% and boosting program stability

  • Reorganized development processes, increasing productivity by 19% through improved Developer collaboration

  • Managed a 12-person team of Programmers in the development of an innovative customer relationship management platform

9.     Engineer examples

  • Streamlined project management processes to reduce costs and increase efficiency, resulting in 22% enhancement in program turnaround times

  • Collaborated with a 10-person team of Junior Engineers to redesign HVAC systems for commercial real estate clients

  • Managed more than two-dozen projects valued at $19 million, ensuring 100% technical and regulatory compliance

  • Optimized workflow and worker utilization to reduce inefficiencies by 19% and increase annual production by 11%

10.  Managerial examples

  • Implemented workplace changes that refocused company culture on customer satisfaction and employee morale, resulting in a 28% boost in worker retention and 18% increase in revenue

  • Oversaw three departments during a company-wide reorganization, minimizing employee turnover and increasing profits by 22% over three quarters.

  • Created hybrid remote work policies and procedures that resulted in a 19% increase in retention, 17% boost in productivity, and 33% reduction in sick time

  • Successfully incorporated new daily shift safety meetings that resulted in a 22% increase in employee engagement, 12% boost in productivity, and 24% reduction in accidents

  • Led 12 design team projects to modernize the company, increasing efficiency and profitability by 17%

11.  Sales examples

  • Successfully led a 20-person sales team that boosted company growth by more than 24% over six months, by focusing on larger accounts and increased attention to client relationships

  • Consistently exceeded sales goals by 20%, while increasing client retention by 23%

  • Created and implemented a new training program for new sales personnel, reducing onboarding time by 42% and boosting overall sales production by 24%

  • Expanded company client base by 22% in six months, building profitable relationships with mid-size clients and increasing sales revenues by more than $3 million

  • Achieved recognition by XYZ Inc. as its Top Producer for three straight years, with client accounts valued at more than $60 million

The bottom line

Though there was a time long ago when employers would be satisfied with you listing your job duties on your resume, those days are gone. Today's companies are more interested in what you achieved for your past employers. Fortunately, that can provide you with a golden opportunity to illustrate your potential value by including the right accomplishments in your resume, showcasing measurable results that are sure to make a powerful first impression!

Need help creating and organizing those powerful accomplishments for your resume? Get your free resume review from our team of experts today and learn how they can help you to get the effective resume you need to land more interviews.

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