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Submitted by cruss on


I am having problems writing results oriented bullet points for my resume. I don't have any financial or metric information on how well I have done my job. I'm afraid that my bullets will end up sounding arbitrary without the "how well i did it" that Mark and Mike suggest. While I have many accomplishments in my current position I have never had any real results oriented measurement of my success. Let me give some examples.

1: I was responsible for upgrading workstations (hardware and software) during a major application change over. I can talk about the number of workstations (135), the number of effected departments (6), and the process changes involved (many). I can talk about the communication, planning, and resource management I did. I can explain how I facilitated the training for the new application. This all happened as part of a team which I lead, so I can speak to the teamwork and coordination that took place.
What I can't talk about is the effect on the bottom line, the amount of increased productivity, or actual gains in output volume or quality. This is because no one is measuring these things. Even if they started measuring them now, a year after the project completion, they weren't measured before so there is nothing to compare to. As for budgeting, I brought the project in on budget only because the budget was based on "here are the quoted prices".

The Bullet for this could read:
- Facilitated a production application migration through the replacement of 135 workstations in six departments
Or it could read:
- Increased output by X% in six departments by facilitating an application upgrade and replacing 135 workstations
I don't know what that X% number is, no one does.

2: I implemented a new production system to automatically process digital images. Everyone involved knows that it allows many more images to be processed with less personnel in a much shorter time with better consistency. I just have no actual metrics for any of that. We didn't know how many images were being done per day before and we don't know how many are being done now. There is no good quality metric even though everyone agrees that quality is higher.

A bullet point for #2 this might be:
- Increased volume and quality of digital images by implementing an automated processing system
I know this won't have the effect that a bullet with a "by 16%" or "saving $16,000 annually" would have.

I need guidance in constructing effective bullet points without this kind of hard data.


ccleveland's picture


Good news and better news:

The [u]good news[/u] is that you do have hard data: the number of workstations upgraded, the overall budget of the project, and the number of images you can now process per person. This information gives a point of reference for others. For example, project budget amount is an indicator of the size of projects you have experience with.

The [u]better news[/u] is that you’re looking for ways to improve your metrics! As you begin new initiatives, you have a new perspective on how to track success. For example, in the future, you might take a look at tracking how many images could be processed prior to a new implementation for comparison. I’m better at [u]measuring[/u] successes now than I was when I first started my career. I like seeing that growth in other people's resumes, as well.

Good luck!!


cruss's picture
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CC - Thanks for the great reply. I always like getting good and better news.

I still not sure that this qualifies as the results data that M&M talk about. These numbers speak to the scope of what we did, not how well I performed in doing it. As for tracking things going forward, I have neither the ability nor authority to collect this kind of information. It's not asking for data already collected. This isn't being tracked and doing so would add layers onto the departments who actually do these things.

I also realized that I forgot BLUF in the original post (as Mark points out [url=]in this post[/url])

So here is the Bottom Line:

1: If anyone has any better way to write out these accomplishments, please let me know.

2: I would love to hear from managers about their reaction to a resume with out this results specific information.


Mark's picture
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I am swamped tonight, but this is important, and I have it.

Give me a bit.


cruss's picture
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Mark - Thank You.

jhack's picture

I've hired a lot and seen few resumes as good as yours will be. The format is powerful, and demonstrates that you THINK about action and impact.

So saying: "Upgraded 135 workstations in one day without business interruption to 6 depts. Upgrades enabled major business process changes" tells me as the hiring manager that you did your job well and that you understand the business value of what you did.

It's also a springboard to discuss that qualitative impact in the interview

This will stand out from 95% of the other resumes the hiring manager will see. Sure, if you could quantify the dollar value of the project, you'd be a shoo-in but as the hiring manager I would definitely ask questions about how you calculated that return. Don't BS numbers you can't justify.

Good luck!

cruss's picture
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Thanks for the reply. That is what I was hoping to find out. I am concerned about when I get to the "springboard to discuss that qualitative impact". I know how to detail the procedure and get to "So what impact did that have on the company?" Then I get to explain that I have no idea. At the moment I'm more worried about the resume than the interview questions. Yet, after the [url= podcast I do understand that my next step will be the 3-5 minute replies for each bullet I write.

Mark's picture
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The way you write accomplishments is fundamentally the same all the time.

- Action verb, result achieved, method used.

- Achieved 12% increase in productivity by eliminating two outdated mechanical systems.

- Improved profits by 1.1% (11 million Euro) by changing cost basis of raw materials and spot market purchases.

- Grew sales by 9% by creating relationship plan focused on high margin customers.

Give me some raw stuff, and I will turn it into these if you want.


cruss's picture
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How do you write them when you don't have a "result achieved"? The problem is that I don't have the 12% increase, or 11 million, or 9% growth. Those kinds of impacts were not tracked and that level of reporting isn't done. I have achievements, I just don't have quantitative results for any of them. I'd love to see bullets for my examples above. That would put me on the right track.

Thank You.

Mark's picture
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- Migrated a production application through the replacement of 135 workstations, in 6 departments, with zero downtime. (or downtime of less than blank %)

Significantly improved throughput and quality of digital image processing by installing an automated system.

That's fine.

And, you can probably see better now why quantification would be easier. And, at the top, quantification is required for ANY projects, because at the top all projects are big, and big projects require justification.

Next time, measure before and after. :wink: (Don't feel bad, I learned this lesson when I was 26).


cruss's picture
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Thank You, Mark.

I hope as I move forward I'll have the ability to measure the impact of my achievements more fully.

sholden's picture
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Great examples. You have the touch!


Mark's picture
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You're in San Diego...that's like saying Tony Gwynn had the touch, because he took hours of BP before EVERY game! Just do it a few thousand times, that's my motto for being above average!


asteriskrntt1's picture

Hi Cruss

Can you make any projections on how fast you completed your projects compared to projected deadlines?

EG, converted 135 workstations to new operating system in 8 days vs project budget of 14 days?

Trained x amount of staff on new platform in X hours sessions, with no measurable increase in help desk load (shows you trained well and did not require new resources in another area)

Hope this helps


cruss's picture
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Good idea, I'll see if any time based information about my projects could help.