Utilize PAR Statements to Enhance Your Resume’s Wow Factor

Has this happened to you? Two resumes, one each from equally qualified applicants are submitted to the same posting but only one gets selected for an interview. Aren’t you dying to find out why one applicant did not get invited to interview?

Job seekers frequently write most about their job duties. Although employers appreciate knowing your day to day duties, they are more likely to be drawn to resumes where job applicants describe their accomplishments as well.

Here is an easy to learn technique to enhance your resume using PAR statements. Problem (or Challenge) – ActionResult Statements can also be referred to as Accomplishment Statements. These statements describe a problem you faced, the action(s) you took to overcome the problem, and the result(s) of your actions.

PAR statements reflect your skills and promote the work you completed. Using these statements in your resume gives prospective employers ideas of the kinds of contributions you will most likely make in the future.

Strengthen these statements further by quantifying them. If your results are not easily quantifiable, consider discussing the soft skills utilized that led to the accomplishment.accomplish

An example of a PAR statement is:

Revived a mediocre sales team (Problem) by introducing attractive employee incentives, improving team morale (Actions), resulting in a 30 percent increase in productivity within one quarter. (Result)

In the above example, creativity and motivational leadership skills are brought to the forefront.

While building a resume from scratch, it is natural to wonder if you actually have any achievements worth speaking of. Consider…

  • The work you are most proud of.
  • Any internal processes or systems that you redesigned/improved.
  • Money and/or time you saved the company or the client.
  • Any special projects you worked on.
  • Any new programs, systems or processes you designed or implemented.
  • Awards and recognitions received.

Structure your PAR statements in this way:

  • Define the problem/challenge.
  • What action(s) did you take to relieve the problem?
  • What obstacles were you required to overcome?
  • What was the result(s) and how did it benefit the company?
  • What skills did you use when you took action on the problem?

Now, put the PAR into one concise statement as in this example.

Problem: Disorganized, inefficient warehouse

Action: Redesigned the layout

Result: Saved the company $500K in recovered stock

 PAR Statement: Tasked with increasing efficiency of warehouse, fully redesigned layout, resulting in employer saving $500K in recovered stock.

Use action words to start PAR statements. Make them as concise as you possibly can, without letting go of any of the important elements that might impress the prospective employer. For more PAR samples, check out this Babson College document.

PAR statements are an excellent way to highlight your achievements. And a solid PAR statement helps boost your confidence, as well as gives that extra kick to your resume. Once you add PAR statements to your resume, get ready to interview, since from now on you will likely be contacted by more hiring managers. And, speaking of interviews, the work put into crafting strong PARS will also translate to delivering strong answers, particularly in behavioral style interviews.

andreaking482014Andrea Killion, MS, NCC, MCC
Careerful Counseling Services

Andrea assists clients in successfully achieving rewarding employment. She works with a diverse array of adults from all industries, backgrounds and stages. Whether you are looking for work, trying to figure out what career to pursue, or unsure whether to stay in your current position, Andrea can assist you with these issues and more.

Photo above obtained from http://www.123rf.com.

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