In consulting recruiting, your resume can either be one of your greatest assets or liabilities. After all it’s the first impression you make in most instances. In order to best represent your set of experiences, you’ll need to use the relevant resume keywords that consulting firms look for when screening candidates.
A good consulting resume includes keywords and buzzwords that consulting firms are looking for. These indicate that you have built a set of skills that are relevant for the industry. In this article, we will be covering the 5 main types of abilities consultants look for and the resume action words you can use to represent them.
Tips for Using Resume Keywords
Before going into the different types of abilities you want to showcase on your consulting resume, let’s start with some tips when using these keywords.
- Use strong action words – The first word is the first thing consultants will see in each bullet. Using strong and relevant action words will start your bullets off on the right foot.
- Your first word in each bullet should be in past tense – Your bullets should be about work you have already completed, so your first word should be in past tense. It’s easy to make a typo and forget to do this, so double check all your words once you finish writing the resume.
- Diversify your word choice – Try to limit the number of times you use the same action words. Having a larger variety of words will help show consultants that you are able to accomplish many types of tasks in different ways.
What Consulting Firms Look For On Resumes
1. Personal Impact
Consulting firms look for candidates who leave their marks both with the people they work with and the projects they work on. The best people to work with are not just the ones who make their presence felt but their absence felt as well. Think deeply about your experiences and have some of your bullets focus on the biggest impact you were able to make.
Personal Impact Resume Keywords:
- Increased efficiency by X%
- Improved processes by X
- Maintained relationships with clients
- Achieved successful result
- Presented to executive team
2. Entrepreneurial Drive
Everyone wants to work with people who are creative and come up with new exciting ideas. Even though management consulting is an established and historic industry, there are always new things to improve at a consulting firm or during a project. It’s okay if you haven’t started a business – think back to any times you brought a fresh perspective or approach to a problem when crafting your resume bullets.
Entrepreneurial Drive Resume Keywords:
- Initiated X workstream
- Founded business, club, or organization
- Redesigned a process or workstream
- Built new relationships with clients
- Started a new internal initiative at company
3. Problem Solving
Management consultants solve problems, plain and simple. Clients hire them to solve the business or organizational problems that they can’t solve themselves. As a result, it’s important that you use the right resume buzzwords to demonstrate your ability to use your intellect and work ethic to find and implement solutions. Think back to your experiences at work and in organizations and construct bullets with buzzwords that showcase your problem solving abilities.
Problem Solving Resume Keywords:
- Performed company or industry analysis
- Created solution for X problem
- Analyzed data to generate insight
- Conducted research through surveys and focus groups
- Evaluated situation to discover X issue
4. Leadership Abilities
Consulting firms are always thinking ahead and trying to find candidates who aren’t just good employees but also have the potential to be future leaders. There always needs to be a strong pipeline of younger consultants who eventually need to be the next generation of leaders for the firm. Additionally, regardless of the level of the position you are recruiting for, consulting projects will require you to step up and drive forward an important workstream. Having previous leadership experience shows that you can handle being under pressure and making difficult decisions.
Leadership Ability Resume Keywords:
- Led a team
- Spearheaded workstream
- Organized planning of event
- Mentored students
- Directed committee
5. Quantitative Skills
Consultants don’t require candidates to be financial wizards or mathematical geniuses. However, businesses deal with a lot of numbers. To help your clients properly, it is helpful to have a strong quantitative skill set. To the extent you can, construct bullets with resume buzzwords that demonstrate that you are comfortable working with numbers and large datasets. As an added bonus, use as many numbers as you can to show that you’re comfortable with numbers (i.e. “Assisted $500MM public company with social media publicity to generate 100K+ online impressions).
Quantitative Skills Resume Keywords:
- Conducted financial analysis
- Built a quantitative model
- Analyzed financial statements
- Managed large dataset
- Utilized statistical analysis
Your resume is your first impression that you make to consultants in the recruiting process. Within the resume, the first words in your bullets will be the first words that are read, so it’s important to make them count by using the right resume buzzwords. We hope this article helps provide some guidance on how to do just that. Best of luck!