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Military to Civilian Professional Resume

Military to Civilian Professional Resume

Switching your entire lifestyle is a hard enough task without having to worry about your career too. Millions of Americans serve as soldiers but after they retire or leave the duty, they have to go through the phase of completely changing their life, choosing a civilian career, and adjusting to the new routine. Transitioning to civilian life comes with its struggles and difficulties and one of the biggest problems that people face is finding a new career.

With already millions of people looking for employment opportunities, a former military person can find it tough to find a suitable job. Although you do not require a resume for moving up in military ranks, a really well-crafted resume is required if you want to get a good job and start your new civilian career the best way!

The first step towards writing a successful resume is to set your career objectives clearly. If you are sure about which industry you want to enter or have your eyes set on a specific job, the process will become very much easier. After all, writing an effective resume is all about knowing your objectives and integrating them into your resume. While choosing an entirely new career can be intriguing, this is your chance to pursue a career you were always passionate about.


According to research, 5.3 million Americans served in the Gulf War era alone and millions more continue to become active-duty soldiers. If you have been one of the brave individuals who have served in the military and now want to step into a civilian career, you will need to make sure that you stand out among others. Especially since you probably lack experience in any civil roles and positions and other candidates with a civilian background will have plenty of it. However, it is all about displaying your former military experience as relevant and transferable in your new targeted job to get that position. One thing you need to learn before you start applying for any job is that resumes play a big part in civilian careers. Not only does your resume speak about your achievements and skills, but it is also your first introduction to the hiring manager as they will look at your resume before they meet you in person. We all know how important first impressions are and you do not want the hiring manager putting your resume in the ‘rejected’ pile just because they did not find it impressive although you had all the necessary qualifications and skills.

Dermilitarize your Transferable Skills

So, how do you make sure that your military-to-civilian resume is effective and lands you a brand-new job? Well, the first step towards writing a successful military-to-civilian resume is choosing a job or industry that you want to pursue and then making sure your resume is specified to fit that job or industry. Remember, resumes are not one size fits all and they need to be customized carefully so that you match the required profile of the candidate a hiring manager wants. These are some basic ways of making an effective professional resume that helps you get an interview:

  1. Research the job before you apply for it and make sure that they hire people with your skills and experiences. Although it is easier if you were a medic or had some specified position in the military that is closer to civilian jobs, it can be really hard to find transferable skills if you were in combat or had an on-field job. Ensure that you choose an industry where you have a good chance of acquiring a job based on your former experiences and achievements.
  2. When you start writing a resume, it is best to assume that the employer knows nothing about the military and has no knowledge regarding the technical terms tied to the military. Avoid using any technical jargon or acronyms that might make it hard for the recruiter to understand your resume. For example, if you want to write ‘ACS’, simply write community service or if you want to write ‘AFB’, just write base.
  1. Whatever military experience you have gained, try to write it in your resume in a way that becomes easier for a civilian to understand and is demilitarized. For example, instead, of writing ‘bombs’, you can write high-risk assets.
  2. Focus more on your transferable skills than your experience. This also means thinking about other skills you might have developed in the military as a part of your job. For example, most military positions teach you communication skills, management skills, and leadership skills and these are very easy to transfer into any civilian job.
  3. Create a profile summary for your resume that is civilian-friendly. This again means demilitarizing your experience and making them general enough that they appear civilian-friendly. For example, if you served as a commander who led 10 soldiers on a combat mission, you can simply write that ‘Supervised and led a team of 10 members to accomplish the predefined operational goals.
  4. Include your achievements that prove that you are a hardworking and dedicated employee or an overachiever who accomplish goals and objectives rather than just a random employee.
  5. Including a military-to-civilian cover letter in your job application is a great option and will make you stand out from the other candidates. However, do not use the cover letter to disclose personal information or stories that you might have, instead, use it to complement and comprehend the information that you have already provided.

A majority of veterans look for civilian jobs after they leave the military. Showing the hiring managers that your military experience is relevant and useful will improve your chances of landing an amazing civilian job. We offer fully customized military to civilian resume writing services that will make your former military experiences, skills, and accomplishments look transferable and help you impress the recruiter to have a successful military to a civilian career.

Documents Required for a Military to Civilian Resume:

  1. Your previous resume
  2. EPR document
  3. VMET
  4. All relevant military

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