Jazz up your resume with action words!

Updated: Jul 22, 2020

Resumes are usually screened in a matter of 30-60 seconds by a recruiter. So how do you make sure your resume stands out?

Use Action Words!

Start every line with an action word! These include words like:

  • led

  • managed

  • built

  • created

  • developed

  • hired, etc.

Here is a comprehensive list you can use for your resume. Using these words changes the narrative from a passive voice to an active voice and make your accomplishments and achievements clear.

1) Here’s an example from Karan’s resume:

  • IT support manager responsible for two major clients.

Karan could reword this using action words and our What-How-Impact framework

  • Led a team of 6 to handle IT support for Bharti Airtel and Pepperfry, resulting in a decrease in app downtime due to maintenance by 60%.

While Karan’s first attempt looks like a job description, his second attempt uses action words effectively to describe in detail his leadership skills, as well as his impact on the company.

2) Here's another example from Rohit's resume:

Rohit is a customer service representative in a large call centre.

  1. Managing incoming calls and customer service inquiries

  2. Identifying and assessing customers’ needs to achieve satisfaction

How could we improve this? By using action words and the What-How-Impact framework!

  • Handled over 60 calls per day, with a customer satisfaction score (CSAT) of 9.5/10.


1) Always use action words - here’s a list for easy access

2) Ensure every bullet point begins with an action word

3) If the work was done in the past, use the past tense.

4) Choose action words based on the jobs you are applying to and what skills they are looking for.

While rewording your resume can be tedious and time-consuming, it can increase the chances of a recruiter noticing your resume and calling you for an interview! Try it out and let us know if you need any help by emailing us at info [at] resumewabi [dot] com!

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