7 Tips to Writer an Impressive Technical Writer Resume

As a technical writer, you are adept at tackling superfluous verbiage, thus making it easy for everyone to comprehend a particular piece of writing. Your present organization and clients widely appreciate your technical writing skills. But, it takes more than appreciation to surpass others on the job candidate list for a new job. While you put your name in the hat, the technical writer resume you made must present you as the best fit for the role. The following article will guide you by degrees to prepare the resume that makes your job search journey impeccable.

 

Tips to write an impressive technical writer resume

 

Technical Writer: An explanation

 

A technical writer is a professional writer who converts complex technical writings to clear and concise documentation for the target audience. They research and compile technical information to produce documents like manuals, project plans, white papers, design specifications, software test plans, and online training materials.

 

Sometimes their content creations may include press releases, social media posts, and web pages. They work in medicine, technology, engineering, and the sciences and are inevitable to technology-based businesses.

 

Technical writers are professional writers with excellent language and good written communication skills who produce error-free technical documents to sound credible. They also possess remarkable research skills to study a subject in its vastness and depth and explain it to the audience in clear and crisp language.

 

Types of Technical Writing

 

The feature which makes technical writing different from other types of content is its objective to educate, inform or give directions about something. Technical writing intends to impart particular skills or abilities. This writing tends to be very detail-oriented as it is used mainly in fields where advanced knowledge is required.

 

Today technical writing has become mainstream as we come across this type of content in our day-to-day personal and professional lives. Due to the vastness of the field, familiarizing yourself with the different kinds of technical writing makes your job applications and freelance gigs more effective.

 

We can broadly divide technical documentation into the following three forms:

 

1. Traditional technical writing

2. End-user documentation

3. Technical marketing content 

 

The following are some of the common types of technical writings under these divisions:

 

● Science and medical papers

● Professional reports and reviews

● User help guides

● Product manuals 

● Assembly guidelines

● Technical books

White papers and case studies

● Proposals and pitches

● Promotional brochures

● Training manuals

● Online articles

● Press releases

● Posters and visual communications

● Research results

● Policy and procedure guidelines 

● Employee handbook

● Business plans

● Emails and letter

● Memoranda

● Resumes and job applications

 

Here is a complete guide on How to Become a Technical Writer

 

Further, we will discuss in detail how to make the technical writer resume that best emphasizes your qualifications and experience.

 

1. Technical Writer Resume Template 

 

Technical writers are a subset of content writers who use written words for explaining complex ideas simply. The work of technical writers in freelancing or full-time jobs mainly involves creating content for technical documents. These include the white paper, user manual, product descriptions, medical study, instruction manuals, reference guides, standard operating procedures manual, etc.

 

Hence, the resume of a technical writer should showcase strong communication skills and technical insight. First and foremost, it is essential to select the best layout for the CV. The reverse chronological resume is the standard resume format, which shows your latest achievements as a technical content writer towards the top.

 

It is equally important to choose the best fonts and font size for your resume. Some clear and simple font styles include Arial font size 11, Calibri font size 12, Germond font size 13, Cambria font size 12, and Georgia font size 12. Include categories of information in the resume under various sections like summary, education, certifications, header, technical skills, achievements, soft skills, awards, work experience, etc. 

 

Given below is a list of a few websites which offers some of the best and free online resume templates:

 

1. Canva

2. Indeed

3. Novoresume

4. Zety

5. CVMaker

6. CakeResume

7. Resume Genius

8. My Perfect Resume

9. Jobscan

10. Resume.com

11. Kickresume

12. Standard Resume

 

2. Technical Writer Resume Header

 

A resume header introduces you to the hiring manager. The header section on the resume is the first thing that attracts their attention, and hence you cannot afford to get it wrong. A poor resume header will baffle a commonly used Applicant Tracking System, and they will reject your resume. Nevertheless, making good headers for resumes is a simple task. Once finished, you can position it at the top of the resume or on the center or the left margin. 

 

 A professional resume header includes the following details:

 

1. Your full name

2. Your current designation and years of experience

3. Your contact information, including your mail id, location, and phone number 

4. Links to the online portfolio and social media accounts

 

These are a few key points to keep in mind while formatting a resume header:

 

● Your name should be the most important thing on the resume and should be in a bigger font than the remaining details. Ensure that the name you use on your resume is the same as those on the different online profiles relevant to the job. 

● The second important detail on a resume is your work title. For a technical writer, the job titles include technical communicator, technical content developer, technical documentation specialist, etc. A fresher in technical writing may also mention relevant certifications like “Certified Professional Technical Communicator” with your level of expertise. 

● When it comes to the location, you can avoid adding your full residential address and merely list your city or region instead.

● Provide an accessible phone number for the ease of setting up interviews. If you are already working, avoid giving your current office number.

● Equally important as the phone number is a formal mail id. A mail id of the format of “your first name + surname + @gmailcom” will look professional. As in the contact number, avoid using your current office email id.

● Add URLs of job-related websites or online portfolios to give additional proof of your skills.

● A majority of hiring managers now use Linkedin to recruit applicants. So, make sure that you set up a well-organized Linkedin profile and add the custom Linkedin URL to the header section. 

● In the case of a two-page resume, make sure to add a second-page resume header for consistency.

 

The professional resume header avoids adding a photo and the title “Resume” at the top. You should also avoid irrelevant information such as gender, religion, marital status, etc. You can refer to the job description to see whether you need to add other relevant information to your resume header.

 

The cover letter header should be the same as your resume header for the two documents to complement each other. You can add graphical elements like contact detail icons in the resume header. Additionally, highlight the section to make it stand out from the rest of the resume. To conclude, the header section of your technical writer’s resume should be visually appealing, easily readable, and easy to locate.

 

Recommended Read: Technical Writing Courses in India

 

3. Technical Writer Profile Summary 

 

Technical writer profile summary is a short professional introduction placed at the top of the resume. This summary shows your work experience, industry knowledge, areas of specialization, best skills, and professional achievements. Hiring managers spend only a few seconds skimming through each resume to decide whether the applicants meet the job requirements or not.

 

Thus the chief purpose of a summary in a resume is to parade your strong point and unique value as a job seeker. But, in addition to this relevant information, most recruiters also assess the following from the resume summary to make sure that you are not another ordinary writer but the best candidate for the job:

 

● How well you can catch someone’s attention with your words.

● How professional, sophisticated, and pleasant your writing is. 

● Whether your tone of writing is convincing or not.

 

A resume summary is placed soon after the contact information for its significance. In this elevator speech, you give a brief description of your work experience in powerful words and clearly and concisely.

 

These are a few points to keep in mind while writing a technical writer profile summary:

 

1. Delineate your strong personality traits in a few words.

2. Introduce your current designation and professional experience in the resume summary.

3. State how your service would help the employer reach their goals.

4. Give details about your key accomplishments to demonstrate how you can deliver results at work.

5. Use quantitative data when necessary.

6. Limit the summary to 3-5 sentences.

 

Example:

“Knowledgeable and proactive technical writer with experience of 3+ years in end-user documentation for top consumer electronics companies. I have completed 1000+ pages of user guides in collaboration with top maintenance engineers and field technicians.

 

I was awarded “outstanding employee of the month” for attaining a 25% boost in user satisfaction with the manuals. Seek to enhance consumer-brand relationships and gain high customer satisfaction for Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.” For a Technical Writer Resume with no experience, you may include a resume objective instead of a summary.  

 

A good objective statement for a resume focuses on transferable skills from other roles or internships. A resume objective implies you still have a lot to offer despite your lack of experience as a technical writer. So, while writing the resume objective, it is necessary to focus on the proper attributes and knowledge you can bring to the table once an employer hires you.

 

To name a few, mention the excellent academic background you have had, a technical writing course you recently completed, volunteer work, soft skills, etc.

 

4. Follow the Technical Writer’s Job Description.

 

While writing your technical writer resume, you should exercise prudence and precision in describing your work experience. Your description of your work experience should convince the hiring manager that you meet the job requirements. Hence, it is necessary to revise your resume each time you apply for a new job. Equally important is to use action verbs like worked, trained, commended, and wrote to express your involvement in a task clearly and powerfully. 

 

These are a few ways in which you can tailor your resume to the job description:

 

● Refer to the job description and make a list of all those requisite experiences you possess through your former responsibilities. 

● Highlight your editorial skills if mentioned, as that can improve your chances 

● Highlight your familiarity with the use of relevant software as required in the job description. Some examples are flare, acrobat, Visio, captivate, Camtasia, CMS, Snagit, Framemaker, Robohelp, Grammarly, Hemingway, Microsoft Sharepoint, Document360, and Markups.

 

5. Build your Technical Writer Resume Education Section

 

Technical writers come from different educational backgrounds. In most cases, a candidate for a content writing job would benefit from holding a degree in subjects like English, Communications, Journalism, etc. However, for a profession in technical writing, your highest education need not necessarily be in a writer-specific discipline.

 

You can merely state your highest degree along with a certification you have done on technical writing. The bachelor’s degree preferred may vary according to the specialized expertise required in the industry. Technical writing programs offered by professional associations help one to familiarise with the latest technology trends in their field of specialty.  

 

Certifications provide those working in entry-level technical writer jobs with a specialized skill set contrary to their earlier education. But, if you have specialized in technical fields, it is always a good idea to highlight the advanced education you have gained along with any on-the-job training.

 

Recommended Read: Content Writing Courses in India

 

6. List Technical Writer Skills in Your Resume

 

Technical writing jobs require both technical skills and soft skills. The following is a list of research and writing skills you can add to your technical writer resume:

● Writing skills

● Visual communication

● Research

● AP Stylebook

● Problem-solving

● Troubleshooting

● Web design

● Audience Analysis

● Chicago Manual Style

● Content review

● Interpretation of Statistics

● Writing style guides

● Grammar, punctuation, and proofreading

● Create Diagrams, charts, and infographics

● Search Engine Optimisation

● Analytical thinking

● Development and maintenance of SOPs

● Interpersonal skills

● Critical thinking skills

● Written & oral communication

● Team player

● Meeting deadlines

● Self-motivated

● Active listening

● Organization skills

● Professionalism

● Multitasking

● Time management

 

Do not randomly mention some skills on your resume, but be specific and list those skills required for a particular job.

 

7. Technical Writer Cover Letter

 

Now that you are ready to mail your resume, you might be wondering whether you should include a cover letter along with your resume. Well, yes, you should attach a cover letter along with the resume. A cover letter allows you to state an argument for considering you over other candidates for the particular position.

 

In a cover letter, you can showcase your qualifications and skill set, your soft skills, and provide links to your best works proving you to be the best fit for the role. In this section, we discuss how to write a job-winning cover letter.

 

The following are a few things to keep in mind while formatting a cover letter:

 

● Use the same header as in the technical writer’s resume.

● Build your cover letter with four main components – heading, opening statement, body, and closing statement. 

● Keep the cover letter brief and limit the number of words between 200 and 400. 

● Use one-inch margins and a line spacing of 1 to 1.15. 

● Use double spacing between paragraphs.

● It is best to keep your cover letter font size between 10 and 12 points.

 

Use a simple cover letter layout that includes the following:

 

1. a formal address

2. an engaging opening paragraph

3. a body regarding your experience in technical writing

4. a concluding paragraph briefing what attracts you to the company 

5. call to action

6. formal signing off

 

The following instructions may help you create a technical writer cover letter easily:

 

1. Address the letter to the hiring manager, by using their full name or with Mr. or Ms. followed by their surname.

 

2. Write a striking opening paragraph that conveys your passion and enthusiasm for technical writing. By keeping the requirements in the job description in mind, state how your accomplishments may contribute to the company’s growth. If you are an employee referral, emphasize it as that would make the quality of your work more credible to the hiring manager. Lastly, express your knowledge of the current activities of the company. 

 

3. In the body of the cover letter, make sure to mention the most relevant qualification that makes you a good fit for the role. Elaborate on your skills by describing the technical writing you undertook and introducing the writing software you have used.

 

Use the PAR formula to highlight your career achievements. This method can further prove your capability to contribute to the company’s growth. Use active verbs to show your impact on the former works. Quantify your achievements wherever it is necessary.

 

If you have little experience in technical writing, elaborate on your courses and knowledge, activities, and projects. Mention the degree that would be helpful for the position. An experienced technical writer should not fail to add links to the best works.

 

4. In the closing paragraph, personalize your tone while stating what motivates you towards your work. Express your appreciation for the company’s work culture and clearly state how you think it would embrace your values. As you conclude, call the interviewer to action by expressing your expectation to be contacted. Mention that you will follow up on your application status. Express your gratitude for their time and draw attention to the attached resume.

 

5. End the cover letter with a formal sign-off followed by your full name.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

1. What is the nature of work done by a technical writer?

Technical writers are good wordsmiths whose work constitutes simplifying jargonized language in technical documents to easily understood form for better comprehension by the reader.

 

2. What are some examples of documentation that come under technical writing?

Technical writing serves several industries such as finance, engineering, manufacturing, biotechnology, telecommunications, academics, supply chain, publishing, and more. Hence, the documentation under this extensive domain is of different kinds such as briefs, reviews, proposals, catalogs, business plans, analysis reports, policy manuals, instruction manuals, handbooks, style guides, etc.

 

3. What are some of the inevitable skills to add to a resume?

The topmost skill that a technical writer should possess is excellent writing skill to present complex ideas coherently using simple language. Some other skills that might set you apart as a technical writer are critical and analytical thinking, technical knowledge, designing skills, and organizational skills.

 

4. How much can a technical writer earn on average in India?

The salary of a technical writer in India depends on the expertise and the quality of the work done. However, on average, a fresher in the field can earn between 2.50 lacs to 3.50 lacs per annum. A technical writer with experience of more than two years can earn anywhere between 4 lakhs to 6 lakhs per annum.

 

Conclusion

 

Today, businesses and knowledge transfer rely greatly on ubiquitous technology. Things being what they are, technical writing is inevitable for all organizations. So, they would readily invest in quality content that best communicates their ideas to the target audience. To conclude, in the present times, technical writing is a viable career with many prospects. 

 

You are now familiar with the steps to follow to create a job-winning resume. Email the technical writer’s resume with a cover letter attached for an upcoming job. Also, send a follow-up email after the application without fail. As we wind up, here is a checklist for your perfect professional technical writer resume:

 

1. A good resume header that calls attention to your name, contact information, and other information relevant to the role

2. A professional summary that best outlines your work experience, chief responsibilities, achievements, career goals for the new job role. 

3. Links to your work samples. 

4. Information regarding relevant certifications and tools you are familiar with 

5. Include relevant technical skills and soft skills

6. Include details of education only if applicable 

 

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