How to Create a Perfect HR Manager Resume: Complete Guide to Resume Writing

If you're in the market for a new HR manager position, you already know your resume is the most important tool you need on the journey to a new job. But regardless of how many resumes you've seen while working in human resources, writing your own resume is still hard.

Don't worry; we know that everyone can use a bit of help when writing a resume, and we have the perfect solution!

Our step-by-step resume writing guide will walk you through everything from how to choose the right resume format to what information should go on in your skills section. You'll learn how to write an effective career summary and get tips on tailoring your resume specifically for this type of job.

With our help, you can create a professional resume in no time that sets you apart from 99% of other HR professionals. And with our HR manager sample, you'll be able to see exactly what it looks like when done right!

So don't wait any longer - read on to learn how to create a perfect HR manager resume! Or jump straight to the resume example




 


What to do before you start writing an HR manager resume?

With your experience in human resources, you already know that human resources managers (HR managers) have a broad scope of responsibilities.

HR managers manage all aspects of human resources, including payroll, compensation benefits, performance management, hiring, training and development. They are also developing and implementing HR strategies, initiatives and procedures aligned with the overall business strategy.

It's important to note that the responsibilities of an HR manager can vary from one company to another.

At one company, the focus of the position can be on talent management and employee lifecycle. Elsewhere, the HR manager may be mainly responsible for performance management and compensation benefits.

The options are endless.

Considering the wide scope of responsibilities and potential combinations, writing an HR manager resume can be tricky since you need to clearly present relevant experience and skills without overwhelming a potential employer with lots of unnecessary information.

To do so, customize your resume to the available position.

If you're looking for a new human resources manager job, you must know what skills are required for this position and how to present them on your resume.

So, before you start working on your resume, make sure that you know the skills, experiences and qualifications employers are looking for in candidates. This insight will help you present relevant information in a concise and clear way.

Luckily, companies include that information in their job postings, confirming everything applicants should know about the position -- from the company culture to job requirements.

So, take your time to familiarize yourself with the job description and read it carefully. Use it as a guideline while writing and tailoring your resume to the role.

Now that you know what employers are looking for, let's write your perfect HR manager resume together -- step by step!


 


Choose the right format for the HR manager resume.

Choosing the right format is a starting point when writing a resume.

There are a few basic resume formats you can choose from:

  • Chronological resume

  • Functional resume

  • Hybrid resume


Chronological resume


A chronological resume is the most common resume format. It prioritizes relevant work experience and education, listing the experiences from most recent to older ones. Since it's the most popular format, creating a chronological resume should be your first choice.


This resume format is perfect for job seekers with consistent work history and work experience related to the job they're applying for.


Functional resume


The functional resume focuses on the professional skills you've developed through various jobs rather than work history. In other words, it groups skills and qualifications which relate to various positions instead of listing specific job titles and duties.


As such, it's useful for people who want to emphasize transferable skills while looking to change careers without having much relevant work experience yet.

Also, if you have few work experiences or if there are some gaps in your work history, then the functional format is probably the best option for you.


However, it's worth mentioning that recruiters and hiring managers dislike this format as it deemphasizes work history and is frequently hard to understand.


Hybrid Resume


Sometimes referred to as a combination resume, this format is a combination of chronological and functional resume, where the top section reflects your skills and achievements while the bottom lists work experience. This resume will reflect both transferable skills and work experience in an easy-to-read way.


Like functional resumes, it shifts the focus away from work experience and puts the emphasis on transferable skills. However, unlike functional resumes, it also provides information about work history, so it combines the best of both options.


The hybrid resume format works well for individuals who want to change careers, re-enter the workforce, or have gaps in their work history but are still able to list a number of transferable skills.


Need more information before you decide which resume format to use? We have you covered! Read the complete guide on resume formats. ➝



 


Add relevant contact information.


Ok, let's start working on the content!


Start your resume with your name and contact details, placing them prominently at the top of the page.


Contact details should include:

  • City and state or country

  • Personal phone number

  • Personal email address (make sure it sounds professional)

Optionally, you can add a link to your LinkedIn profile. Before adding a LinkedIn link to your resume, make sure your LinkedIn profile is updated, optimized and ready to be viewed by potential employers.


Don't add unnecessary contact information, such as a full home address or landline.


Also, don't include any contact details that lead to your current employer. Even though you may be more easily accessible on your current work phone number or work email address, they should not be a part of your resume that is sent to other employers.


Want to learn more to ensure you're kicking your resume off the right way? To add the important info, skip the irrelevant one and format contact details properly, read the complete guide on adding contact information to a resume. ➝



 


Grab attention with a Human Resources Manager headline.


Following your contact details, add a job-tailored headline to grab the attention of a recruiter or hiring manager.


The headline should be at the top of your resume, so it first attracts the reader's eye when scanning applications.


With just a few keywords, a resume headline should tell readers who you are professionally in the context of your current job application.

For example, readers should at first glance recognize that you're an HR generalist, experienced HR manager or senior HR executive.


If relevant to the job posting, you can also highlight your years of experience, areas of expertise, certifications or achievements.


Here are a few examples:

  • Human Resources Manager

  • HR Generalist | PMP-certified Project Manager

  • Award-winning HR Business Partner | HR Administration, Performance Management & Compensation Benefits

  • Senior HR Executive | Implementing Innovative Hiring Solutions | SHRIS-Certified Professional

Adding a tailored headline to your resume is optional, but it can be useful in branding yourself as a strong candidate for the job right from the start.


Do you need additional help with writing a strong headline that summarizes your expertise? Go to the guide on writing a resume headline and use ready-made examples as inspiration. ➝



 


Write a strong career summary.


After your headline, write a tailored career summary.


Being just 3-4 lines long, a career summary, or a personal statement as it's often called, serves as an introduction and works as an elevator pitch.


Career summary helps you position yourself as an expert by highlighting the most relevant experiences and core competencies at the very top of your resume.

To write a strong career summary or a personal statement, do the following:

  • Start with a sentence or two describing your experience and areas of expertise. Indicate how many years of experience you have if this information matches the job requirements.

  • The following two sentences should be your key selling points. Think about the experience, skills or achievements that make you perfect for the job.

  • Optionally, finish with a sentence about your career goal, focusing on long-term personal and career development within the role you're applying for.

Read the complete guide on writing a perfect career summary (i.e. personal statement, resume summary, or professional profile overview).


Career summary template


Even though a career summary is one of the shortest elements of a resume, it's often one of the most difficult ones to write.


To help you put your best foot forward, we've created a template.


<Adjective 1> and <adjective 2> <current or most relevant job title> with more than <number> years of experience in <industry 1> and <industry 2>. Extensive experience of <area of expertise 1>, <area of expertise 2> and <area of expertise 3>. <Quantify relevant achievement>. Having experience with <relevant experience>, currently looking to broaden experience and apply the existing skill set in <industry/company/role>.


Career summary examples


When you fill it in with relevant keywords and tweak it to fit your profile, you'll get a perfect HR manager career summary that sounds like this:

  • People-oriented and HRIP-certified HR manager with 10 years of human resources experience and 3 years in HR management jobs. Extensive experience in developing hiring strategy, managing HR teams and operations and implementing HR systems. Saved $300K per year by finding and implementing a new HRM tool. Looking to utilize expertise as an HR manager at XYZ company.

  • People-oriented and results-driven recruitment manager with 7 years of HR experience in staffing agencies and in-house recruitment. Experienced in developing talent acquisition strategy, implementing hiring best practices and recruiting the best talent. Streamlined hiring process and reduced hiring costs by 37%. Looking to broaden experience and apply the existing skill set as an HR manager at ABC company.

  • Experienced HR Business partner with over 15 years in human resources administration, performance management and employee relations. Specialized in streamlining HR policies and procedures. Optimized year-end performance review process and increased efficiency by 30%. Looking to utilize expertise and broaden leadership experience as a HR manager at XYZ company.

  • Senior HR Manager with extensive experience in recruiting, talent acquisition and employee relations. Experienced in developing HR guidelines and procedures, designing recruitment strategy and implementing innovative hiring solutions. Skilled at SMEHR (Social Media for Employers) strategies to attract new hires across the globe. Seeking to join a fast-paced start-up and set up an HR department as HR manager at ABC company.


Check the list of 85 word-for-word resume summary examples.



 


Include HR skills.


Relevant human resources competencies can be a part of your career summary or a separate bulleted list beneath it.


If you decide to add HR skills as a separate section, make sure that together with the career summary, it doesn't take more than one-third of the page. Keep it concise by staying focused on relevant skills, not every skill you have.


Depending on your previous experiences, some of the core competencies in the human resources manager resume could be:

  • talent management

  • performance management

  • employment law or labor law

  • payroll, compensation and benefits

  • HR administration and organization

  • HR projects and programs

  • HR policies and procedures

  • recruiting or talent acquisition

  • training and development

  • diversity and inclusion

  • employee lifecycle (new hire orientation to exit interviews)

  • employee engagement

  • employee relations

Additional soft skills you can add to your resume are:

  • leadership skills

  • communication skills

  • time management skills

  • organization skills

  • problem-solving skills

  • interpersonal skills

Frequently, employers ask for specific hard skills (i.e. technical skills), such as knowledge of certain software, language or tools. If they ask for any of these in the job description, make sure to specify your proficiency.


Here are some examples for describing the level of proficiency for hard skills:

  • BAD EXAMPLE: MS Office, Workday, English, German

  • GOOD EXAMPLE: MS Office (advanced working proficiency), Workday (advanced working proficiency), English (native), German (conversational level)




 


List previous employment.


Now, we get to the most important part of your resume -- your work experience.


First, if you've opted for the chronological resume format, list your previous employment following reverse chronology. It means you should list your current or most recent job first, then the previous one, and so on.


For each employment, you should include the following information:

  • Job title

  • Company name

  • Time frame (month and year of start and end of employment)

To this section, add only work that is directly relevant to the job you're applying for. It helps to think about experiences for which you were paid, such as full-time and part-time jobs, self-employment, consulting jobs, freelance or contract work.


Unless they are closely related to the job you're considering, volunteer jobs, charitable work, or any other unpaid work shouldn't be added to this section.



 


Describe your work experience.


The way you describe your previous experience can make or break your resume.

Use bulleted lists to provide details in this section in a concise, concrete and compelling way.

Avoid filling your resume with buzzwords or vague descriptions of your day-to-day duties.


Instead, make it pop by focusing on your actions using action words.


To write strong resume bullet points, follow this formula:


action verb + quantified outcome + 'by/through/using' + your actions


For example, instead of saying that you were responsible for developing HR strategy and managing the human resources department, write something like this:

  • managed the award-winning HR team of 20 HR professionals, including senior consultants, specialists and interns

  • reduced hiring costs by 37% YoY by implementing a new HRM solution and employing innovative hiring strategy using social media

Some amazing power verbs for the HR manager resume are:

  • improved

  • organized

  • streamlined

  • integrated

  • transformed

  • enhanced

  • stimulated

  • collaborated

  • partnered

  • managed

  • advised

  • delivered


 


Quantify and emphasize achievements.


Without unique achievements, your resume will sound like all other resumes on the pile of HR professionals who have a similar experience as you do.


Adding quantified achievements is the best strategy to create a strong and memorable human resources manager resume.

Having unique and impressive achievements is the key to getting a competitive advantage, sets you apart from other candidates and helps you stand out.


However, some may argue that human resources are not sales, so it's hard to quantify achievements.


We encourage you to think creatively about your successes and responsibilities.


See if you can add some of the following:

  • the number of employees or HR staff you managed and supported

  • the budget for HR projects or programs you managed

  • time or money saved through the processes or practices you streamlined or improved

  • key performance indicators (KPIs) or targets you overachieved

Alternatively, find quality achievements.


For example, recognition or awards for your excellence in HR management are unique successes that can also set you apart from other candidates.


For a perfect work experience section, read the complete guide on describing the work experience and highlighting achievements. ➝


 


Add relevant education.


List your educational background, including degrees obtained and any additional training in human resources management or related areas of study that you have completed. This is important as employers will want to know what qualifications you have.


Same as in the work experience section, list your education in reverse chronological order. Make sure the highest level of education is listed first.


A few more things to note:

  • If you obtained relevant HR certificates or completed training in human resources, list them in your education section.

  • Add dates to each level of education. List the month and year of graduation (or anticipated date of graduation).

  • Unless you are a recent college graduate, you don't need to add your GPA. After 3 to 5 years of experience, your work achievements become more important than your GPA, so there is no need to have it in a resume.

  • If you didn't complete a degree but still want to add it to your resume, consider including the number of credits you obtained.

Need some examples? Learn how to make it right with the complete guide on writing the education section that covers over 15 practical examples for all educational backgrounds. ➝


 


Polish the resume layout.


High-quality and tailored content is critical for the success of your job application.


However, the layout is the first thing that the readers will notice about your resume. Unconsciously, it will make an impression on them before they read a single word from it.


To make it right, the layout of your resume should be clean, organized and professional-looking.


Simple yet effective tricks to get this look include balancing white space, using consistent fonts throughout the document, applying professional resume colors and avoiding any flashy graphics.


If you want to ensure your resume grabs attention in a professional way, consider using a professionally designed resume template.





 


Proofread your resume.


One of the biggest pet peeves recruiters and hiring managers have are typos in resumes.


Considering your resume has only 6-7 seconds before they make a decision to continue reading it or toss it, having a typo in your resume can have a detrimental impact on your job application.


So, don't let a small typo make a bad first impression and hinder your job application.

proofread your resume multiple times. If you can share it with a friend, family member or a colleague who will proofread it for you, that's even better!



 


Save your documents in the right format.


When publishing a vacancy, employers sometimes ask for a specific format in which all applications should be submitted. Read the job description carefully to find this information.


By sending your resume and cover letter in the wrong format, you could rule yourself out of the applicant pool right from the start.


Most commonly, they will ask for documents in Word or PDF format.


If they haven't specified the format, then it's up to you to choose how you want to send your documents.


Based on our previous hiring experience, PDF files work best in various applicant tracking software (ATS) and are easiest to read, so we recommend saving your resume and cover letter in PDF format.


By saving your documents as PDF files, you will also preserve documents' formatting and ensure they look the same on every computer.



 


Name your HR Manager resume professionally.


Minor details can play a significant role in the success of your job applications.


A typo, unprofessional email address or inappropriate file name can all ruin your efforts.


So, in the end, when your resume is complete, name it professionally. Simplicity works best. Just write your name, surname and specify it's a resume, like this:


John Doe_resume.pdf



 


Prepare an HR Manager cover letter.


Your job application is not complete without a tailored cover letter.


Think of it as a 'letter to your future employer' where you introduce yourself, highlight the value that you would bring to their company and provide an explanation for why they should hire you.


To write a great cover letter, follow these steps:

  • Greeting: Start with a professional greeting. If possible, address the hiring manager or recruiter personally with their surname (Dear Mr Smith or Dear Mrs Doe). Avoid obsolete and overused greetings such as 'Dear Sir or Madam' or 'To Whom it May Concern'.

  • Opening: Indicate how and where you found the job description and why it got you intrigued.

  • Body: The body of the document is where you win them over. Highlight your achievements and strengths that relate to the job in question. Explain how you can add value to their company and how your personal characters make you a good fit for them. Make sure you're not just duplicating the content of your resume.

  • Closing: Thank the employer for their time and consideration. End on a positive note mentioning that you hope to hear from them. Make the closing paragraph assertive, yet professional.



 


HR Manager Resume Example


Finally, following all these steps, we've created a perfect HR manager resume.


Here is an HR manager resume example you can use as inspiration.



HR Manager | 10 Years of HR Experience


People-oriented and HRIP-certified HR manager with 10 years of human resources experience and 3 years in HR management positions. Extensive experience in developing hiring strategy, managing HR teams and operations and implementing HR systems. Saved $300K per year by finding and implementing a new HRM tool. Looking to utilize expertise as a HR manager at XYZ company.


Areas of expertise