Finding a Civilian Career

Tailoring Your Resume

One resume will not fit all job applications. In fact, some job-search experts say job seekers should tailor their resume to each individual job opening and emphasize their skills, training and experiences that most directly meet that job’s requirements. Translating military training, skills and experience into a resume that fully and accurately conveys your value to a civilian employer is unquestionably challenging. Your TAP advisor and skills translators, such as the one on, can help with that process.

Remain vigilant about translating your military training, skills and experience into terms that can be clearly understood by civilian hiring managers in banking, transportation, manufacturing, engineering or any other industry on which you are focused. Be especially vigilant about explaining the duties, abilities and responsibilities that were part of your rank and grade. Most civilian hiring managers don’t know what an E5 is and will pass over that person when searching for a middle manager unless the applicant explains the managerial responsibilities that came with an E5 designation.

Employment websites offer numerous articles about effective resume writing (and many other aspects of job searches). They include:

There are also multiple organizations that provide resume writing assistance for transitioning military and veterans:

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Hire Heroes USA: provides employment workshops, transition assistance, personalized career coaching and job sourcing to transitioning military and veterans. As part of that service, Hire Heroes helps transitioning military and veterans create tailored civilian resumes that highlight their skills and achievements.


Military Corps Career Connect (C3) has partnered with a SkillSmart – an accomplished employer-driven, online hiring platform – to develop a service that clearly identifies applicants’ skills and qualifications, and matches them with the core requirements of employers.

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Heroes Linked: A resource for expanding your network. Many civilians use network connections as the primary way of finding new job prospects and opportunities. Start working on your network by tapping into Heroes Linked.

Hiring Our Heroes: As part of its Hiring Our Heroes initiative, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce created the Personal Branding Resume Engineā„¢. The online service will translate your military record into a strong resume that civilian employers can understand. Once you complete your resume, you can make it visible to thousands of employers who are searching for qualified job candidates. The site also provides valuable resources for military spouses.