Optimizing Your Resume For An Internal Promotion

internal promotionNine ways to increase your chance of success

While many people believe that the only time a resume is required is in support of an application for a position with a new employer, another instance where a resume could be utilized, is to enhance a candidate’s application for an internal promotion. Regrettably, in the latter, a resume is either disregarded or if submitted, fails to include pertinent information that will strategically position the applicant’s submission as a worthy candidate.

With an internal promotion application it is easy to presume that management are either aware of your job responsibilities, or can locate this information from a job description or other resources obtainable through the Human Resources department. For those who believe this to be the case, beware, as you could be disadvantaging yourself from the outset. The fact that you are currently working with the employer does not mean that your current manager (or potential manager) is familiar with the solutions and achievements you have secured within the work place, so it is up to you to portray this – and what better way than within a contribution-oriented resume.

When developing your resume for an internal position, imagine you are targeting a role with another employer and don’t assume that the executive team know what you have been doing in the organization, or the value you have contributed. This is even more important if the position you are aiming for is senior to your current role, and you will need to qualify why you should be extended the opportunity for a promotion. This can include evidence of leadership and management accountabilities, or responsibilities specific to the new role.

Read through the following statements to assist you in collating relevant information to include in your resume for an internal promotion:

  • When targeting a higher level role than your current position, identify instances where you have demonstrated leadership/management competencies. This includes training, supervising or supporting new staff members; the successful completion of in-house leadership/management professional development programs; heading a special assignment; or spearheading an initiative that remedied an organizational problem through tactical investigation, development and implementation.
  • List the challenges that were present, and the initiatives you executed to overcome these. If available, don’t forget to include accurate figures and facts to quantify your statement.
  • Include professional development or in-house seminars to confirm your willingness and ability to assimilate and apply new techniques and processes in your role.
  • Identify the additional responsibilities you undertook that can differentiate you from other staff members that have similar roles? By listing these accountabilities will portray your multi-faceted experience and an ability to take on extra responsibilities.
  • Are you a recipient for any awards for outstanding excellence? If so, what did you achieve these for? Have you received a letter of praise from a client, or another colleague that will confirm your high-standing reputation within the organization?
  • Have you initiated/collaborated in any special assignments? Have you been requested to contribute your expertise to assist the company in moving forward or in overcoming various internal issues? What initiatives did you take, and what was the outcome?
  • Were you able to overcome problems within the workplace through identifying and contributing suggestions? Can you identify yourself as a problem solver and trouble shooter who can transform an unconstructive circumstance into a constructive one through imaginative thinking and action?
  • Are you able to demonstrate instances where you slashed organizational cost; captured revenue growth; optimized productivity and overall operational efficiency? If so, provide details and measurable outcomes.
  • Did you volunteer your time on any special assignments that provided you with an opportunity to work on a cutting-edge project, or even spearhead a strategic planning project?

Begin to keep track of your accomplishments, special assignments or involvements within the organization by writing them down. The potential to forget pertinent information is easy, and can regrettably disadvantage your application. By including your contributions and achievements within your resume can certainly optimize your internal job campaign.

Happy writing!

Is your resume getting results or just a cursory glance before ending up in the circular file? We can help you with that. Visit career-intelligence.com’s Resume Writing & Career Services site.

About Annemarie Cross

Annemarie Cross is a Personal Branding Strategist & Business Coach supporting women entrepreneurs build a powerful authentic brand and reputation as an authority in their niche so they can attract a constant stream of ideal high paying clients. She also works with women executives and professionals; helping them get noticed, promoted (and/or hired) and paid what they're worth for the value they bring to the workplace.


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