Your technical writing resume is your first opportunity to make a great impression on prospective clients, so you definitely want to make sure it's flawless. There are many different styles and formats you can use to create a stellar resume. Feel free to experiment to make yours stand out from the crowd, but be sure to include these essential elements:
Technical Skills: Great technical writers are not just people who know how to write; they're individuals that have a strong aptitude for and knowledge of highly technical subject matter. If you hope to get hired as a technical writer, your resume needs to show that your technical skills are top notch. Be as detailed as possible when you are outlining your technical skills. List computer programs you are familiar with, programming languages you know, and any other technical skills you think an employer might be interested in.
Technical Writing Experience: Just as not all writers can effectively write about technical subjects, not all individuals who understand highly technical subjects can write about them. Individuals in charge of hiring technical writers want to see that candidates are experienced and competent writers; technical skills alone are not enough. On your resume, be sure to outline your past technical writing experience. List the companies you have worked with, and outline the results you achieved for these companies. There are different ways to organize this section, so look around to find the layout that will work best for your level of experience.
Relevant Training and Education: Most companies that hire technical writers expect them to have a college degree or other type of relevant training. Whether you have an undergrad in computer science or journalism, be sure to mention it on your resume. Any courses you completed to upgrade your technical and/or writing skills can also be included here. This will show anyone reading your resume that you are committed to improving your craft, something that is sure to impress.
Contact Information: Anyone who is interested in hiring you will need a way to get in touch, so be sure to include your contact information. Make it easy for the employer by providing a phone number and an email address you check regularly.
If you've included all of this information and organized it clearly, you're well on your way to having a killer resume. Here are some general tips you should also consider:
Keep it short and sweet: Your resume is a snapshot of your education, skills, and relevant experience. Employers can always ask for further information if they need it, so keep your resume nice and short. One page is the recommended length, and no resume should be longer than three pages.
Don't overlook the importance of formatting: The resumes of technical writers are scrutinized quite closely. Make full use of the tools in your word processing program to format your resume perfectly. For a technical writer, it matters.
Proofread before sending: Check your resume for any type of errors. Never send anything unless you know it's absolutely perfect.
Last Updated: 05/05/2014