Congratulations! After hours of sweat and smiles, you’ve finished your volunteer efforts but how are you going to make them stand out on a resume? Of course, you could intertwine your experience in your face-to-face interview… or add it to your professional network profile in hopes that your potential new employer will do some “digging” about you, but the question remains -- will it make a lasting impression?
Showcasing your volunteer experience not only can highlight key skills and qualities of you as a person, but it also shows that you would be more likely to take part in a company-wide volunteer effort.
According to a Linkedin survey, 41 percent of respondents consider volunteer effort to be just as valuable as paid work experience when they evaluate potential candidates. Which means, it’s crucial to include it within your professional resume.
Where to Put Your Volunteer Experience
While updating your resume with volunteer experience, you can either add it under “Related Experience”, “Community Involvement” or a “Skills” section.
For example, if you volunteered with Junior Achievement teaching a JA program at a local school. Your volunteer duties included working side-by-side students to help them understand financial concepts, entrepreneurship and careers.
How to Connect Your Volunteering and Resume
From this experience, you could state that the skills you gained included: increased confidence and enthusiasm in public speaking, further developed leadership experience by coordinating with the teacher and students, as well as improved ability to think outside the box to relate the concepts to the students.
You may also be able to demonstrate that you are supportive of your employers’ Corporate Social Responsibility efforts, should you volunteer through your current company.
Whether you’re wanting to beef- up your resume or looking to showcase your community involvement, volunteer experience can make as big of an impact on your resume as you did by volunteering.