Do I Need an Objective Statement on My Resume?
Career experts disagree on the inclusion of an objective statement on resumes. A section considers it essential because it offers a brief background description of a candidate’s personality and capacity. The other group sees it as an unnecessary item that occupies space that vital resume information should fill. There is also a minority group of recruitment consultants who submit that an objective statement is inconsequential; Therefore its inclusion on a resume should be optional.
What is an objective statement?
This is a brief and direct, position-centered statement that describes how your skills and qualifications will add value to a position. It serves as a topic statement of around two to three sentences on your resume. It is mainly focused on defining your goals while briefly describing the skills and experiences you could contribute to the role and the organization entirely. In other situations, an objective statement simply describes what you are looking for or what you want; this can be in job searches or business deals.
Most job applications require you to submit resumes with cover letters. This letter identifies the position for which you are applying or indicates you are writing to inquire about opportunities. In this case, an objective statement becomes repetitive. What about job listings that don’t request cover letters? The idea behind objective statements is for applicants to reinforce their goals to convince employers that they have the skills needed for the job; Hence the case for and against the inclusion of objective statements on a resume are all valid after all.
When to use an objective statement
Regardless of the side of the argument, you agree with, there are times that an objective statement can be very useful:
- When seeking your first job: applicants for entry-level roles with little or no experience may require a well-crafted objective statement to get noticed. This is because the objective is an effective way for recruiters to get an impression of a candidate. They provide rare insight into your personality, your abilities, what you will bring to the role, and the value you will add to the firm.
- Returning from retirement or a career break: it is important to be forthright when explaining employment gaps to potential employers. If you have been on the side-line for a while own up to it and show enthusiasm for getting back to work. An objective statement is the section of your resume you should use to tell a prospective employer that you are coming out of retirement or returning from a career break. Explaining yourself and giving context upfront will depict you as a trustworthy candidate in the recruiter’s mind.
- When trying a different career path: an objective statement on your resume can make you stand out if the job at hand doesn’t entirely match your field of discipline. Use the objective statement to explain briefly that want to change your career path. Point out how your skills will be valuable to the role you are applying; Highlight your strength and how they can help you succeed on the job. You can also establish a relationship between your qualification and experience with the position in view.
- Seeking a different job in the same organization: assuming you want to change positions within the same firm, an objective statement is where you will express the enthusiasm and value you are bringing to the new role. With a lot of applicants out there competing for the vacant position, you will have to update your resume to align with the role you intend to switch to if you want to compete. Let the employer know you are a worthy contender from the onset with a compelling objective statement.
Reasons not to use objective statements
The opponents of an objective statement have outlined a few reasons why it is unnecessary on a job seeker’s resume, these reasons include:
- It is outdated: objective statements are no more invoke. In contemporary job markets, a lot of specific qualities are being sorted after from job applicants; An objective statement is not one of them. Studies have shown that employers are now uninterested in it, rather they will want to assess a candidate before drawing a judgment.
- It is generic: imagine if recruitment depends only on an objective statement, candidates who articulate theirs the most will gets the job. People are supposed to say something nice about themselves when looking for a job; This makes objective statements typical of job applicants. Hence, it only makes sense on paper to most recruiters.
- It feels humdrum: your resume is supposed to entice the hiring manager from the beginning; Sadly, objective statements hardly achieve that these days. Employers have reported finding objective statements boring and dissuading.
Benefits of an objective statement
Below are a few benefits of including objective statements on your resume
- It draws attention: employers often receive numerous applications for a single position. They may not have the luxury of time to review every one of them completely. With a well-crafted mission statement at the top of your resume, you just might have given an employer something he can easily read for a few seconds. If your objective statement appeals to him, he might review yours longer to determine whether you are qualified for the role you have applied for or not.
- Digital tracking: in this era of digitalization, employers use applicant tracking system software to sort out resumes. The software scans through for keywords on resumes and selects those for the next hiring stage. An objective statement is a great section to include some of these keywords, which could propel you to the next phase of the recruitment process.
- It highlights your strength: an objective statement offers you an opportunity to briefly state your strength and how they will come to bear on the role at stake. For instance, if you have had a lengthy industry experience or possess a unique skill that puts you above others for the role, your objective statement is the best place for it to be on your resume.
All sections of a resume are important and should have their specific objectives if need be. Remember, an objective statement on a resume is to make a first impression on the hiring manager. You can’t afford to do it wrong, especially at the beginning of your resume. If you research and see the need for an objective statement for a particular position, endeavor to craft a captivating one. But if the role or employer seems not to require an objective statement, kindly prepare your resume without it or replace it with a job target, a personal branding statement, or an accomplished-focused career summary.