When applying for a job, having licenses and certifications related to the position can be a valuable addition to your resume. These credentials show employers that you have acquired the necessary skills and knowledge to excel in the role.
However, figuring out which licenses and certifications to include on your resume can be confusing. This guide provides an easy-to-follow overview of how to effectively highlight your licenses and certifications on your resume, helping you stand out as a qualified candidate to potential employers.
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Certifications and licenses show that you have the knowledge and abilities to do a specific job. They prove that you have been trained and are prepared to meet the job requirements.
Including certifications and licenses on your resume is important because employers want to hire professionals who are well-prepared. Some industries require specific skills for certain jobs, and having the right certification shows that you have taken the time to polish your skills.
Certifications are not the same as online courses. They come from reputable sources that show you have specialized knowledge and skills. While online courses are similar to university courses, it's important to make sure that the provider is reliable.
Since many employers use Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) to screen job applications. Having a certification section on your resume increases the chances of your resume being read by employers. Adding certifications to your resume is easy, but there are important things to consider before listing them.
Some job requirements may ask for certifications on your resume. Employers seek knowledge and skills; a certified license or credential can prove you have what it takes.
Certain jobs require specific expertise. Relevant certifications on your resume can show that you have the skills needed for the job.
Certifications on a resume should come from reliable entities and training programs to demonstrate that you have completed a serious and quality training course to develop the required knowledge and skills.
If there is space left on your resume after listing relevant details (e.g., education, skills, work experience), you can include a certification section on your resume.
Adding certifications to your resume can compensate for lack of work history and show that you are a strong candidate with proof of skills and expertise. Even if you have expertise that the employer does not directly demand, including relevant certificates on your resume can display your current level of expertise.
Now that we have covered the situations on when to include certifications on a resume, it is important to know how to list certifications on your resume/CV with some examples.
📝 Note: Some licenses and certifications on a resume can be state-specific. Thus you may have to include location if this applies to your scenario. For example, resume certifications in nursing shall display the state where the certificate was issued.
Write “in progress” for any certifications on your resume that you are still undertaking and the expected date for completion.
Example of a CPR certification on a resume:
Licenses and Certifications
For professionals with more than one license or certification, adding certifications to your resume shall display the most recent license first and then list past certificates completed. Listing certifications on your resume in reverse chronological order makes your document easy to read and straightforward.
Certifications boost your resume, and each industry/field has specific certifications tailored to jobs in that industry.
Here are some different professions with examples of certifications that fit well on a resume.
Generally speaking, certifications on a resume vary and heavily rely on the job description and what you prioritize. When it comes to cover skills in general, here are some examples of certifications that can be used across many different jobs:
Tech recruiters highly regard certifications on IT resumes, and specializations prove you have the skill set they are seeking for. Here are some examples of IT resume certifications on-demand:
The marketing field covers a lot of specialties considering the use of digital platforms. Here are some examples of certifications on a marketing resume:
*Available at eCornell, Cornell University’s online learning platform.
Professionals in the healthcare/medical field require specific certifications to show they are capable of treating patients. A FEMA certification on your resume is one of the most recognized certifications, which comes from the Emergency Management Institute. Assuming you are qualified for enrollment, this is one of the free certifications you can use for your resume. You may also go for a BLS certification on your resume, as they provide training for emergencies.
Certifications vary depending on the specialty you are focusing on. For med assistants, a CMA certification to show you are a Certified Medical Assistant (CMA). Other examples of certifications on a healthcare/medical resume are Certified Patient Care Technician (CPCT) and Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT).
When it comes to PM certifications on your resume, PMP certification is the way to go, but you need to assess if this certification fulfills your goals and needs for your job circumstances. Furthermore, you can take online classes on online course providers, such as Udemy, to get a certificate on a resume.
Online course sites provide agile courses and test prep for the PMP training. Other relevant examples of certifications for your resume are BVOP Certified Project Manager, Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM), and Master Project Manager (MPM)
Fitness covers many areas, and certifications to put on a resume can vary. You can get licenses and certifications on your resume in the following fitness specialties:
Some renowned institutions to certifications on a fitness resume are The National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), The American Council of Exercise (ACE), and The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM).
As a new graduate of nursing or someone who is looking to advance their career in the field, a Registered Nurse or having a Master of Science in Nursing can earn certification on a CV or resume. The following certifications to include on your resume are some examples for nursing professionals:
In order to enhance your career prospects in the education field, many institutions and degree programs award certifications for a variety of credentialing options. The following certifications on a resume can be utilized:
Before selecting which business certifications fit well on your resume, make sure to narrow the focus to a business area, such as management, supply chain, or sales. Here are some examples so you have an idea:
Certifications for legal practitioners rely on what type of lawyer or which law-related career you are pursuing. Here are some examples of certifications on a legal resume:
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Your certifications on a resume can be displayed in specific sections of your resume or CV. Here is now to put certifications and licenses on different section in your resume or CV.
Want employers to look at your credentials right away? You can display certifications on your resume headline/title. Your resume headline displays one of the highlights of your career, and it goes along with your contact information.
Example of certifications in the resume headline:
Listing certifications on your resume summary/objective add value to this section as your experience, skills, and competencies are displayed here. Deciding where to put certifications on your resume profile can be at the beginning of the end.
Example of certifications in the resume summary:
You can also mention “Certified” at the beginning to show you have certifications on your resume.
Skills can make or break a resume. You can create a new section focusing on trained skills that back your certifications on your resume.
Examples of certifications in the skills section:
✅ Hard skills
✅ Soft skills
✅ PMP Certified Skills
For listing certifications on a resume education section, all you need to mention is the certification name, name of the institution, and year of graduation.
Example of certifications in the education section:
Paralegal Professional Certificate Program
Villanova University, Philadelphia, PA
You can dedicate a section named “licenses and certifications” on your resume. If there are space limitations, using a one-word headline for the certification section on your resume will suffice.
Example of the certifications section:
The certification section on a resume varies as different jobs require different types of certifications. Furthermore, it is important to tailor your resume certification section according to the job description, so list certifications that are relevant to the job.
Here are some examples for the resume certifications section:
--- Originally written by Jose J. Rosales ---