How to Highlight Military Experience on Your Resume

Are you a military veteran looking to transition into the civilian workforce? Adding your military experience to your resume can be a powerful way to showcase your skills and qualifications. In this article, we will discuss how to effectively add military experience on a resume and optimize your chances of landing your desired job.

Pain Points of Adding Military Experience on a Resume

Transitioning from the military to the civilian workforce can be challenging, as there may be a knowledge gap in understanding how to translate your military experience into the language and format commonly used in resumes. Employers may not fully grasp the value and relevance of your military skills, leading to missed opportunities.

How to Add Military Experience on a Resume: A Step-by-Step Guide

To effectively add military experience on a resume, follow these steps:

Step 1: Identify Transferable Skills

Start by identifying the skills you gained during your military service that are relevant to the civilian job you’re applying for. These can include leadership, teamwork, problem-solving, adaptability, and many more. Highlight these skills in your resume, emphasizing how they make you a valuable candidate.

Step 2: Translate Military Jargon

Avoid using military jargon on your resume as employers may not be familiar with these terms. Instead, use civilian-friendly language to describe your duties and achievements. For example, if you were responsible for managing a team in the military, you can rephrase it as “supervised and led a team” on your resume.

Step 3: Showcase Achievements and Awards

Highlight any significant achievements and awards you received during your military service. This could include commendations, promotions, certifications, or successful completion of training programs. These accomplishments demonstrate your dedication and capabilities.

Step 4: Add Relevant Experience

Include any civilian work experience you may have had during or after your military service. This can help bridge the gap between your military experience and the civilian workforce as it shows your ability to adapt to different work environments.


Adding military experience on a resume is crucial for veterans looking to transition into the civilian workforce. By identifying transferable skills, translating military jargon, showcasing achievements, and adding relevant experience, you can effectively make your military experience stand out and increase your chances of securing a job.

How to Add Military Experience on a Resume: A Personal Experience

When I transitioned from the military to the civilian workforce, I faced the challenge of how to present my military experience on my resume. Initially, I struggled to translate my skills and achievements into terms that would resonate with employers. However, with guidance and practice, I was able to successfully add my military experience on my resume and secure a job in my desired field.

First and foremost, I identified the transferable skills I acquired during my military service – leadership, teamwork, and problem-solving. I then translated these skills into civilian-friendly language, highlighting my ability to effectively lead and collaborate with diverse teams in high-pressure situations.

Additionally, I showcased my achievements and awards, such as commendations for exceptional performance and successful completion of specialized training programs. These accomplishments reinforced my capabilities and demonstrated my commitment to excellence.

By including my civilian work experience in tandem with my military experience, I conveyed my adaptability and versatility in various work environments. This provided potential employers with a comprehensive understanding of my professional background and potential value to their organization.

Overall, adding military experience on a resume requires careful consideration and strategic presentation. By following the steps outlined in this article and leveraging your unique skills, achievements, and experience, you can effectively highlight your military background and increase your chances of securing a rewarding civilian career.

History and Myth of Adding Military Experience on a Resume

Throughout history, transitioning from military service to civilian life has been a significant challenge for many veterans. The lack of understanding and appreciation for military skills and experiences in the civilian workforce has perpetuated myths and misconceptions, often leaving veterans feeling undervalued and overlooked.

One prevailing myth is that military experience is not relevant to civilian jobs. However, the reality is that military service instills valuable skills such as discipline, leadership, adaptability, and problem-solving – qualities that are highly sought after in many industries.

Another common myth is that veterans can only find jobs in law enforcement or security-related fields. While these sectors may naturally align with certain military specialties, veterans possess a diverse range of skills and can thrive in various industries, including finance, healthcare, technology, and more.

By debunking these myths and educating employers about the transferable skills and experiences veterans bring to the table, we can create a more inclusive and supportive environment for transitioning military personnel.

The Hidden Secret to Adding Military Experience on a Resume

The hidden secret to effectively adding military experience on a resume lies in the power of storytelling. Rather than simply listing job duties and responsibilities, storytelling allows you to showcase the impact and outcomes of your military experience.

Through compelling narratives, you can vividly describe how your leadership skills led to successful missions, how your problem-solving abilities resolved complex situations, and how your adaptability enabled you to thrive in challenging environments.

By sharing specific examples and quantifiable results, employers can gain a deeper understanding of your capabilities and the value you bring to their organization. Emphasize the lessons learned, the challenges overcome, and the growth achieved during your military service – making your resume stand out in a sea of generic applications.

Recommendations for Adding Military Experience on a Resume

When adding military experience on a resume, consider the following recommendations:

Recommendation 1: Tailor Your Resume

Customize your resume to match the specific requirements of the job you’re applying for. Highlight the skills and experiences that are most relevant to the position, ensuring that the hiring manager sees the value you bring.

Recommendation 2: Seek Professional Assistance

If you’re struggling to effectively add military experience on your resume, consider seeking assistance from a career coach or resume writing service. These professionals can provide guidance, expertise, and strategic advice to maximize the impact of your military background.

Recommendation 3: Network with Other Veterans

Connect with other veterans who have successfully transitioned into civilian careers. They can provide valuable insights and advice on how to navigate the job search process, including how to effectively present your military experience on a resume.

Adding Military Experience on a Resume: Explained in Detail

Adding military experience on a resume requires careful consideration and attention to detail. Here are a few key points to keep in mind:

– Identify and prioritize the transferable skills gained during your military service.

– Translate military jargon into civilian-friendly language to ensure clarity.

– Showcase achievements and awards, emphasizing their significance and relevance.

– Highlight any relevant civilian work experience, underscoring adaptability and versatility.

Tips for Adding Military Experience on a Resume

When adding military experience on a resume, consider the following tips:

1. Use action verbs to describe your military experience, such as “led,” “trained,” “coordinated,” etc.

2. Quantify your achievements whenever possible to provide concrete evidence of your capabilities.

3. Use specific examples and anecdotes to illustrate the impact of your military experience.

4. Proofread your resume carefully to ensure accuracy and professionalism.


Q: Should I include all my military assignments on my resume?

A: It’s best to include relevant and impactful assignments that showcase your skills and experience. Select assignments that align with the job you’re applying for.

Q: Is it necessary to mention my rank on my resume?

A: While mentioning your rank can provide context, it is not always necessary. Focus more on the skills and experience gained rather than the rank itself.

Q: How do I address potential knowledge gaps between military and civilian terminology?

A: Translate military terminology into civilian terms that hiring managers can easily understand. Use clear and concise language to bridge any knowledge gaps.

Q: Should I have separate sections for military and civilian experience on my resume?

A: Depending on your specific circumstances, you can choose to have separate sections or integrate military and civilian experience together. Choose the format that best showcases your qualifications and abilities.

Closing Thoughts

Thank you for reading this article on how to add military experience on a resume. Transitioning from the military to the civilian workforce can be challenging, but by effectively presenting your military experience, you can open doors to exciting career opportunities. Remember to tailor your resume, seek assistance when needed, and leverage storytelling to showcase your unique value. Best of luck on your career journey, and remember to visit again for more informative content!