Starting a fashion industry job search? Among your earliest tasks is to understand some basics in preparing a fashion industry resume, a daunting task even for seasoned professionals. If you are looking for an entry level fashion job you also need a professional fashion resume. Fashion industry job search tips have to include preparing an excellent resume, whether the target is fashion design director or administrative assistant. Put these fashion resume tips to work.
1. Avoid the superfluous sections.
This is a key resume writing rule: Don’t include sections that aren’t immediately necessary. High school isn’t relevant if you graduated more several years ago, for instance, and hobbies are almost never useful. Kill that salary mention while you’re at it; though you may have strong ideas about how much you need to earn, potential employers do not want to see that at the outset, unless they ask
A popular offender is the objective. It is no longer best practice to include an objective at the top and it tends to brand you as less experienced in the professional world and shifts the focus from the company’s desires to yours.
2. Crunch those numbers (or sell your skills).
One of the biggest misconceptions about resumes is that they exist only to tell a hiring manager what you can do. Reality goes further: Resumes exist to tell a hiring manager what you can do. After all, the best skills in the world don’t mean a thing if the manager in question can’t connect the dots between your qualifications and the company’s needs and bottom line.
Of course, creating those connections is easier said than done. If you have previous experience in the industry, the best way to demonstrate your effectiveness is by quantifying your accomplishments. Did your marketing team increase year-total sales by 10 percent? Include it. Was your design department responsible for a process initiative that lowered overhead by a specific dollar amount? That’s important. Numbers show how your experience translates to real-world results.
What if this is your first step into the fashion world and you lack the numbers to back up your qualifications. Then, sell yourself on skills alone. First, take a detailed look at your previous jobs and student work to see if you have any achievements that could cross into the fashion realm. Awards and accomplishments in another industry matter if they can persuade that you always do a good job.
Pitch your skills in a manner demonstrating what you could achieve for an employer. For example, “skilled in the color, texture and fit of clothing” is less impactful on a personal-styling resume than “able to find the perfect color and fit for every style and body shape.” The difference is slight, but the latter packs a more punch.
3. Simple but not overly formulaic.
The best fashion resumes clearly outline two things: a) your qualifications and b) the right personality. While you want to show off your skills in a concise manner, don’t be afraid to inject a unique voice into your document. Hiring managers want to connect with you on a human level. Stick to the standard sections — summary, experience, education and skills — but make sure a little of you shows through the list. A fluid and efficient writing style helps a lot. Cover letters are an equally great way to achieve this.
4. Tailor your resume to the job — and company — you want.
Most job seekers keep a basic template, but you’ll get the biggest results if you tailor your resume to both the position and company in question. Before you write, browse the job listing for any key phrases you can use in your document, and then read through the company’s website to learn about its culture, image and goals. One size does not fit all when it comes to the best fashion resumes.
Consider these tips for specific positions:
Design: Include skills that are relevant to the technical production of clothes, and highlight any experience with patterning, fitting, presentation illustration and CAD design.
Merchandising and buying: Mention your proficiency on the financial end, and include experience with sourcing, pricing, trend forecasting, distribution and garment construction.
Visual Merchandising: Keep environmental and interior design at the fore, and highlight your experience with in-store displays, retail image, marketing and consumer behavior.
Marketing and Public Relations: Communication is a marketing resume or PR resume, so make sure to promote your skills effectively just as you’d sell the company’s product. Mention any experience with advertising, editorial, client management and event coordination.
Sales: Non-retail sales experience is relevant here, but make sure to highlight your qualifications in customer service, consumer trends, and stock management.
5. Do a final check.
You’ve edited your sections, shown off your skills and tailored your experience to the position you want. Before you send off your masterpiece, however, use this checklist to make sure everything is in its place.
- Is every word spelled correctly? Don’t rely on a computer program; read your document out loud, and get a second, third and fourth opinion.
- Are all names and dates accurate?
- Is the font big enough for anyone to read?
- Is your formatting consistent?
- Are your verb tenses consistent?
- Does every full sentence include punctuation?
- Are all proper nouns capitalized?
- Have you stayed consistent with your non-date numbers? Here’s a tip: Write out numbers one through nine, but use numerals for 10 and higher.
- Is your contact information accurate and free of typos?
If you answered yes to each of these questions, you are ready to submit the document.
If you need an experienced resume writer and career coach to help you advance to the next level, I can help you craft a game plan and a resume to get you to your goal.