No matter what award you’ve received, chances are you earned it through hard work, skill, and dedication. So, don’t let all of that effort go to waste! Instead, ensure you’re properly showcasing your awards on your resume to get noticed by recruiters and ensure you get more job offers.
Recruiters and hiring decision-makers spend around seven seconds looking at each resume. With only seven seconds, that’s not much time for your resume to make a great first impression – and more importantly – convince them to bring you in for an interview! To catch their eye, you’ll need to have a concise, impactful resume that includes all of your complimentary awards.
However, simply cramming your awards into your resume isn’t enough. There is a right and wrong way to include awards on your resume if you want recruiters to take notice. Looking for a new job at the moment? In this introductory guide, we’ll cover everything you need to correctly list your awards on your resume.
Which awards should you include on your resume?
Choosing the right awards to list on your resume is just as important as listing them correctly. Although it might seem like listing all of your awards is the best strategy, space on your resume – and space in the memory of a recruiter – is limited. So, you’ll want to leave off the awards a hiring manager isn’t likely to be interested in. These include things like your high school basketball trophy and your world’s best dad award.
If you’re not sure what awards to include, we’ve got you covered with a quick breakdown of which types of awards to include:
Do you have any industry-specific awards? These are often more prestigious than company awards because they demonstrate to a hiring manager that you’ve been recognized in a wider field. Furthermore, these awards are more likely to be recognized by a hiring manager than an award that’s only known in your company.
When you list these types of awards on your resume, you’ll want to include the body, title, and year you received the award. Pro tip: include the number of people included in the running. For example, you could say “Ranked #1 out of 2300 employees.”
Your education didn’t come cheap! Both the monetary and time investment in your education mean you need to give your education the attention it deserves on your resume. Remember, just about every candidate applying for the same positions as you is going to have a similar education background, so it’s up to you to show why your education credentials stand above everyone else’s. Think back, what awards or honors did you receive that might set you apart from everyone else.
We’ve included a list of awards that are particularly useful to showcase on your resume – especially if you’re entry-level and don’t have lot of industry-specific experience. Using your academic accolades is a great tool to strengthen your application and make up for a lack of experience. Again, be sure to include the title and year that you received the accolade.
- Department-based awards
- Best in class awards
- Research projects
- Dean’s list and/or honor roll
- Class President
- Other class-based titles
A great way to evaluate your education awards is to ask yourself what they tell others about you? For example, does your 4.0 GPA tell others that you’re a quick learner and hard worker? Perhaps, you worked on a research project that required exceptional analytical thinking abilities. Once you’ve evaluated your awards, determine which most closely match the required qualifications of the position you’re applying for.
Showcasing the awards you’ve received from your previous employers ia great way to bolster your experience. Here are some of the most common awards from employers:
- Employee of the month and/or year
- Top performer
Every hiring manager is looking for candidates that have demonstrated their value to previous employers. If you think about it, hiring managers want to minimize the risk of hiring someone new – you can give them the confidence to hire you by showcasing the awards you received from your previous employers. When you’re listing these awards on your resume, be as specific as you can. As an example, you don’t want to write “Sales Manager of the Month.” Instead, you should add specifics about your award, such as “Recognized as Sales Manager of the Month in March of 2021.”
Where should you include awards on your resume?
Before you start including your awards on your resume, take a minute to evaluate your current resume to better determine where your awards will fit in. You may have fantastic accolades, but if a recruiter can’t find them on your resume, then they aren’t going to help you get that next job offer! To ensure your awards are findable and readable, use a consistent format and sort them in an organized manner. For example, educational awards should go with your education and company awards should go in your experience section. Another way of listing your awards is to create a dedicated awards section on your resume. This can help employers quickly find your awards when it comes time for them to make a decision about who to hire.
Here’s a quick breakdown of different strategies for listing your awards:
Business Administration, Bachelor of Science
University of Florida, Florida 2016-2019
Dean’s List & Honors Roll
In most cases, you can add your award directly beneath the university you graduated from. However, if you have multiple accolades, you might want to choose a bullet-pointed format instead.
Listing your company-specific awards should most likely be done in your employment section. When you’re listing your awards, you’ll want to ensure they don’t get mixed in with your other responsibilities. To keep this from happening, you can separate the awards from the responsibilities with a horizontal line, or by including the awards in boldface font.
Sales Manager, Dancewear Inc., Iowa City (Jan 2020 – Jun 2022)
- Hired and trained new salespeople to expand the company’s sales revenue
- Cultivated new relationships and strengthened existing relationships through exceptional communication
- Built a superior brand reputation by providing detailed and accurate information to key accounts
- Recognized as Salesperson of the Year 2021
- Awarded as Top 5 in New Sales Growth 2021
This strategy ensures a potential employer can scan your resume quickly (remember, recruiters only review a resume for an average of seven seconds on the first pass) and find your awards.
Dedicated awards section
Using a dedicated awards section is a great option if you have more than just a few awards. If you’re someone who is constantly winning awards, you might want to create a section on your resume entirely dedicated to these accolades. You’ll want to include this section near the top of your resume to encourage hiring decision-makers to read more thoroughly through the rest of your resume.
Awards & Achievements
Top Performing Salesperson of the Year 2021
Iowa Region Sales Star 2020
Listed in “Top 10 Sales Professionals to Watch”
Important things to remember when listing awards
Here is a quick summary of the key things to remember when you list your awards:
- Quantify your awards, wherever possible
- Always include the date you earned the award
- Consider whether the award fits your profession
- If applicable, note the body that gave the award
Including awards on your resume is a great strategy to catch the attention of a hiring manager. As we discussed in this article, there are a number of great ways to list your awards effectively on your resume.
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