A résumé is essential whether you are running your own business or seeking work as an employee. It is a document that tells potential employers and clients what you can do for them, and how experienced you are at it. Browse the Internet and explore your local library, and you will find a million suggestions on how to write the perfect résumé – but this article identifies the top requirements for a résumé in the translation industry.
Unless you are an academic, keep your résumé as brief as possible. Imagine that you are a recruiter skimming through an endless pile of job applications – your day will be boring, you will be bombarded with information, and you may even struggle to find the candidate you require.
When you write a résumé, make the job of the recruiter as easy as possible. Give them the exact information they need in a straightforward manner and allow them to instantly tick off all the boxes on their checklist. A recruiter will be looking for a candidate who can satisfy essential and desirable criteria, so present this to them in a simple format in your résumé.
What Can You Do?
An employer or client searching for a translator will want to know what you can do for them. Your skills, abilities, credentials and languages should be highlighted at the top of your résumé. These can be in a bulleted list or in a brief paragraph. Tell the reader precisely what you can do for them, and you will quickly capture their interest.
In the translation industry, a résumé should outline each language the translator can use in their job, and their competency in each of these. Any specialties such as medical or legal translations should also be clearly displayed, along with the number of words per hour you can translate.
What Is Your Experience?
As a translation professional you will need experience and or qualifications in your field, in addition to the knowledge and love for languages. This should be outlined on your résumé, along with suitable referees for each of your previous positions. If you are only a student or entry level translator with minimal experience, try to gain some quickly. Volunteer or offer your services to a charity, and put these as examples of your experience in your résumé.
Consider creating an online portfolio with samples of your translation work, or even a blog that showcases your writing using different languages. A portfolio document can also be attached to your résumé, or offered on request. You might even decide to upload your résumé publicly to the web, or create a LinkedIn profile to help you get work. Make the effort to present yourself and your skills properly, and you will find more luck in attaining good translation jobs.