Ten key components of an MBA applicant resume

There are so many components to an MBA resume. Ironing out the details and coming up with a format that is concise, easy on the eyes, and has lasting impact can be a tedious process. These tips and tricks will give you a way to make sure admissions committees are impressed by your resume immediately.

1. Keep it to one page

Keeping the interest of the reader is essential when it comes to reading the resume. Going beyond one page - could risk them flipping to the content on the other pages and only paying attention to the first page anyways. It is best and standard practice to keep it to one page for MBA applicants.

2. Give more context to the title of your role

If your title or role doesn’t explain what you did at your job exactly, consider adding more context. For example, if you were a “consultant” consider putting “Consultant, Technology Systems Integration” to further explain your focus of work.

3. Put your education at the top of the resume

Putting your education at the top will make sure that the reviewer knows the baseline and foundation for your experience through education.

4. Include any awards or honors at the top

Including any awards or honors that you may have received through your formal education should be highlighted at the top. This will show a foundation for your success through education. This can also come in the form of highlighting scholarships.

5. If your GMAT score is 700+ or GPA above 3.8, put that at the top of your resume

Admissions loves to see highlights of your educational achievements when you have scored way above your peers. Make sure to call that out so it is clear to see.

6. Describe your company or organization if it it not in the Fortune 100, or has less than 50,000 employees

Often times people are not familiar with companies if they’re not heavily marketed or are small. Add in a link to the LinkedIn profile of the company and add short description. Example: “Medium sized advertising agency” or “Human capital consulting company”

7. Think about making your bullets more action and impact orientated instead of solely responsibility oriented

It can be tempting to copy and paste your job description into your resume. However, this makes it look like you were just doing the responsibilities of your role. Instead, think about how you went above and beyond to add impact and value to your organization. Instead of “Responsible for managing 25 clients”, try saying something like “Cultivated 25 new client relationships and managed their client portfolio totalling to $1B”

8. If targeting an industry that matches up with your previous experience, highlight your relevant experience in that industry to help tell that story.

If you currently work in technology industry as a software engineer, and your plan is to transition into the marketing side of technology - talk about that transitional experience. Mention all opportunities to interact or think about consumer needs that you may have had exposure to in your old role. This will help tell the story of your transferable experience.

9. Always include numbers (# of people managed, $ value of projects sold, etc)

People see impact more when it is quantified. Try to come up with values to help tell the story of scale. This will show how important you were to your company and your team.

10. Put one or two fun facts/interests at the bottom

At the end of the day, recruiters may have a ton of very similar profiles. When this happens, it can be helpful to stand out with some fun facts. Think through a passion or experience and add just a short one-liner at the bottom of your resume.

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