If you want your resume to drive results, it needs to break through the clutter, grab a hiring manager’s attention, and show them that you’re the kind of candidate they want—no, need—to hire.
But hiring managers get hundreds, sometimes thousands, of resumes every month, so if you want to differentiate yourself, your resume needs to read differently than the hundreds of others sitting in their inbox.
And one quick and easy way to do that other than the design of your resume? Switching up your language.
Swapping out common resume words for something different, unique, and exciting is a surefire way to stand out and move your resume to the top of the pile. It also helps provide the recruiter with a clearer picture of what your previous roles entailed, and how you helped facilitate growth.
But what words should you use? Here are 100 power words to include in your resume to differentiate yourself from other candidates and land the job of your dreams:
If you thought up a brand new project or initiative try these resume power words:
Why these words work: Companies want to hire people who take initiative, so it’s not enough to say you “worked on” a project. If you were the mastermind behind change at your company—whether that was in the form of a new campaign, project, or internal initiative—you need to use powerful verbiage to illustrate that initiative to potential employers.
A bold resume shows potential employers that you’re an innovator. Get started on a resume design that says “innovation” with Canva’s resume templates, like the Teal Modern Creative Resume or the Black and Orange Modern College Resume.
If you were in charge of managing people, try these resume power words:
Why these words work: “I managed a team” doesn’t really say anything about your leadership skills. The more important thing to communicate to potential employers is how you managed that team. Organizations want to hire inspiring leaders that can hire, motivate, and grow effective teams, not just “manage” them—and these resume power words all speak to that ability.
If you increased efficiency and productivity, try these resume power words:
Why these words work: Again, telling potential employers that you increased efficiency and productivity doesn’t tell them much. Your resume needs to show them how, exactly, you created that increase. Did you streamline a process? Did you boost worker productivity through an internal wellness program? Did you capitalize on a new software (and see dramatic increases in efficiency in the process)? You need to show potential employers how you made an impact and these words are a great way to do it.
You value efficiency at work—so why not show that in your resume design? Try one of Canva’s minimalist resume templates, like the Monochromatic Minimalist Modern Resume or the Grey Minimal Customer Service Resume.
If you improved on existing processes or procedures, try these resume power words:
Why these words work: We might sound like a broken record, but these resume power words work because they dig deeper on how you’ve actually improved existing processes or procedures. For example, systematizing existing procedures, redesigning existing procedures, and simplifying existing procedures are three completely different things that require very different skills and action steps—so you want to make sure your resume clearly outlines the “how.”
You streamlined the processes and procedures in your previous roles—and now you need a streamlined resume to match your experience. Get the streamlined design you need to land the job with Canva’s professional resume templates, like the Blue Simple Professional Resume or the Blue Hexagon Icon Professional Resume.
If you’re all about the data, try these resume power words:
Why these words work: For people who aren’t all about the data, more analytical tasks can be. Using resume power words can help jazz up analytical tasks, making them more compelling for non-analytical hiring managers.
Show potential employers your love for analytical side with one of Canva’s simple (but effective!) resume templates, like the Navy Blue Orange Simple College Resume or the White Minimal Scholarship Resume.
If you were in charge of managing customer and client relationships, try these resume power words:
Why these words work: Being successful in a customer or client facing role ultimately boils down to being able to build, foster, and manage relationships. These resume power words help to illustrate the ability to form a connection, which is really what potential employers want to know.
As someone who manages relationships, your applying to be the face of the company—which is why you should include your face on your resume. Get started with one of Canva’s photo resume templates, like the Modern Professional Resume or the Blue Man Photo Academic Resume.
If you were in charge of written communications, try these resume power words:
As a communications expert, you’ve got the writing part of your resume handled. Let Canva handle the design part by getting started with a resume template, like the Peach Photo Header Scholarship Resume or the Greyscale Photo Modern Resume.
If you were a salesperson extraordinaire, try these resume power words:
Why these words work: Companies want to hire top-notch sales people and if you want to land the job, you need to highlight both your sales-centric skills (like negotiating and closing deals) and your ability to hit (and exceed!) established goals or quotas. These resume power words showcase your sales superpowers and will help you land the interview.
In order to be successful in sales, you need to make an impact on potential customers and you need a resume that’s going to make an impact on potential employers. Get started making your impact with one of Canva’s resume templates, like the Bright Pink Modern Resume or the Blue Header Infographic Resume.
Use these resume power words to land your dream job
You have the skills. You have the experience. And now, you have the resume power words you need to write a resume that’s going to get you noticed, and get you hired.
So what are you waiting for? Get out there and use these resume power words to land your dream job!