Resume Writing Strategies for Bilingual Professionals
By: AJE Recruiting Specialist
As a bilingual job seeker, you boast a very special skill that is in top demand by many companies. A polished, well-written resume that highlights this aptitude will help you gain an audience with employers in many industries, including healthcare, financial services, education, and counseling. When crafting your resume, it is especially important to draw attention to this proficiency in not just your job title, but also your education and skillset. You‚ll want the recruiter to notice your bilingual ability immediately in order to gain a competitive advantage over other applicants. Follow these resume-writing tips for the bilingual professional:
1. Include "bilingual" in your objective Although some recruiters say the objective (defined as the goal of your job search, i.e. your ideal job title) is redundant, in the case of the bilingual job seeker, it should be included. For example, "Bilingual medical biller seeking front office position" is specific, direct, and points out your ability and ideal job title immediately.
2. Include an education section that briefly describes how you came about your bilingual ability, if applicable . If you are not a native speaker, it’s important to include this so the employer understands that you were willing, capable, and interested to learn another language, which can score you big points.
3. Job titles and descriptions should highlight your past experience as a bilingual professional. If you worked overseas or you’ve worked as a bilingual professional at a previous job, you’ll want to outline this in your work experience. Employers will see that you’ve taken your bilingual ability to the next level by applying it in the workplace. Use hard numbers and percentages if you can. For example if you are a sales professional, you can write: "developed the Hispanic market in El Paso and achieved 200% of all sales goals by reaching out to Spanish-speaking clients."
4. Describe how you achieved bilingual status in your skillset, if not through education . For example, ’spoke Spanish at home for 22 years,’ or ’born in Mexico and spoke Spanish most of my life,’ or simply ’high fluency in Spanish,’ all adequately describe your ability in brief detail.
5. Demonstrate how you’ve applied your bilingual ability in the community This is especially important for those that don’t have bilingual work experience to list on their resume. Instead, you can show how you’ve utilized this skill in other ways, such as in special projects, clubs, groups, or local associations, or by volunteering.
6. Don’t forget your cover letter For each resume you send, you’ll want to write a personalized cover letter. This is a great place to go into a bit more detail about your bilingual skills. Keep it to one to two paragraphs that describe your fluency, past work experience, and why you would be a great fit for the job opportunity.
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