Resume tips for individuals transitioning out of the military

Quick Military Transition Guide: Seven Steps to Landing a Civilian Job

Quick Military Transition Guide: Seven Steps to Landing a Civilian JobST. PAUL, Minn. — Individuals who are transitioning from military to civilian life have numerous details to sort out, including how to translate their experience on resumes. In her new booklet, Quick Military Transition Guide, author Janet Farley pinpoints which military words and phrases should be excluded from resumes.

“You may wonder how you can possibly translate some words from the military,” says Farley. “The answer might be not to translate them at all unless they directly apply to the job.”

  • “War/combat: You may have been at war or know how to be, but employers don’t want the details. They want to know if you can do the job you’re applying for.
  • Battle rattle: Unless you’re applying for a job in law enforcement or security, it doesn’t translate. If you are, it’s called body armor.
  • IEDs: Nobody likes to hear about bombs. If your job was diffusing IEDs, consider yourself a conflict resolution technician or crisis manager for the purpose of your resume.
  • PT: You know it as physical training, but it probably doesn’t have a place on your resume or in the interview conversation unless it is a requirement for the job itself.
  • Weapons: Don’t mention your expertise here unless it applies to the job. It will only invoke unpleasant thoughts by the hiring manager.”

“Finally, unless you are applying for a federal or state job, you probably don’t need to get into the finer details of your military discharge—be it honorable or general,” Farley explains. “Those associated with the military will only be confused by it all. For your purposes, you simply left the military service, fulfilled your service commitment or did your time.”

Additional information can be found in Quick Military Transition Guide. The booklet is available from JIST Publishing in a package of 10 copies.

About Janet Farley

Janet Farley is the author of Military-to-Civilian Career Transition Guide and is also an experienced outplacement career specialist in the job search assistance field. She worked for six years as a military transition counselor and later as a career center manager with the Army Career and Alumni Program at various locations throughout the world. She is also a freelance writer who specializes in job search advice.

About JIST Publishing

JIST, America ’s Career Publisher, is a division of EMC/Paradigm Publishing. As the leading publisher of job search, career and occupational information, JIST empowers today’s workforce and students to achieve long-lasting rewards in their careers.