Why Choosing the Right Words for Your Resume is Important

A resume is a one-page document outlining your education, skills and achievements that can help a potential employer decide whether you are a good fit for the advertised position. An employer can also gauge your communication and other skills from the way you write your resume. Strong action verbs and words that reveal your abilities can help your resume stand out. In this article, you can consider some of the best resume words to use.

The right words to use on your resume

Choose your words wisely to create the maximum impact. A resume is often read quickly because a potential employer might have many applications to look through. 

Here are some types of words you should use to make your resume stand out:

1. Strong action verbs

When you write your job descriptions, begin each with a strong, active verb. Rather than ‘Stock room cleanup,’ write ‘Reorganized stock room.’ Using a strong action verb positions you as someone who creates change and takes initiative. 


  • ‘Generated leads for sales unit by attending conventions, mixers and Chamber of Commerce events.’
  • ‘Merged two unprofitable departments into one lean and efficiently functioning unit.’
  • ‘Expanded course offerings to include special needs children in the area.’

2. Statistics and numbers

Numbers provide specific details and serve as evidence for your accomplishments in previous positions. Including statistics and numbers in your resume can also show that you know how to evaluate progress and accomplishment. 


  • ‘Grew company portfolio by 17 clients in a 12-month period.’ 
  • ‘Negotiated terms with suppliers that reduced inventory costs by 23%.’ 
  • ‘Implemented social media strategies that grew engagement from one platform to seven.’

3. Words that show initiative

Employers seek candidates who show initiative. Use resume words that demonstrate you are the type of person who takes on tasks without being told to do so. 


  • ‘Prioritized work orders by urgency after Hurricane Irma to reinstate power to the maximum number of people in the minimum time.’ 
  • ‘Eliminated more than $3,500 of supply costs by renegotiating contracts with restaurant suppliers.’
  • ‘Accelerated growth of startup by bringing $1.2 million of venture capital funds on board.’

4. Words that show leadership and management skills

A true leader is always an asset to an organization. Even if you were not previously employed in a managerial position, there are ways to demonstrate leadership skills among your fellow employees. Try to include unique examples to show your ability to lead and manage people. 


  • ‘Coached two teammates through their licensing exams to rank in the top 15% of scores in the state.’
  • ‘Executed new security plans throughout the building to ensure compliance through drills and spot checks.’ 
  • ‘Navigated state and federal medical guidelines to write clinic policy and procedures.’

5. Words that showcase your teamwork skills 

Teamwork can speed results, boost morale and stoke creative fires. If you work well in a group and bring out the best in yourself and others, show your prospective manager your abilities by using words associated with encouragement and collaboration. 


  • ‘Partnered with the opera team to share costume accessories and reduce our expenses for the upcoming season.’ 
  • ‘Collaborated with the second-grade and fourth-grade teams to create a three-year journaling project.’ 
  • ‘Successfully advocated for low-income mothers to have access to low-cost diapers.’

6. Words that emphasize your communication abilities

Good communication speeds up work and reduces misunderstandings and conflicts in the workplace. Be sure to showcase your communication skills on your resume.


  • ‘Persuaded our school board to keep Anders Elementary open for another year.’
  • ‘Mediated a dispute about a boundary fence between two businesses before it reached litigation.’
  • ‘Consulted with nonprofits, medical groups and theatre students to assemble an AIDS awareness theatre troupe.’

7. Words that reveal your technical abilities

Many positions require well-developed technical skills. Computer scientists, financial analysts and health care professionals are all examples of professions in which these types of skills are crucial. You can show that you have excellent technical skills by using specific language in your resume. 


  • ‘Tested and installed new security software across all 27 platforms.’
  • ‘Led troubleshooting initiatives for a new rollout.’
  • ‘Upgraded all laboratory imaging equipment in the tri-state area.’

8. Words that show your creativity

While professions such as photographers, filmmakers and fashion designers require creativity as a central trait, the ability to come up with creative solutions is an asset in any field. Show that you can think creatively by using descriptive words and related accomplishments. 


‘Conceptualized two print advertising campaigns to attract new age segments to the same product.’

‘Wrote in-depth articles about the role of child labor in the chocolate industry.’

‘Designed a new eco-friendly cup for a national chain of coffee shops.’