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In the management consulting industry, everything counts. In order to prevent your application from getting lost in the pile of applicants, you have to have a superior resume.

Like in other industries, a resume is more than just a requirement for employment. It is a representation of your achievements and experience. Whether or not the recruiter likes your resume will determine if you will be shortlisted for the position. Because of this, you need to spend the time and effort in creating a professional resume that exceeds your target firm’s standards.

For individuals who have the skills and relevant experience, a flimsy resume could be preventing them from landing their dream job. You don’t want to be one of those people. Below are best practices for writing a management consulting resume.

Essential Components

The foundation of an attention-grabbing consulting resume includes essential components. Before you can start to refine and tweak your resume, you must first make sure that you have the right information that consulting recruiters are looking for. This includes educational background, internship, clubs and organizations, work experience (if any), skills, extracurricular activities, contact information and references.

Your choices of words matter when elaborating on the essential components of your consulting resume. Be direct, straightforward and avoid complex sentences. If a recruiter is unable to understand or comprehend the content of your resume, chances are he or she will move on to the next applicant.

Keywords and Phrases

Consulting recruiters go through hundreds of resumes every day. The reality is that they will skim through your application and look for specific phrases. These keywords could be honors, 3.7 or higher GPA averages, analytic, critical thinking, leadership and organizational skills, or top consulting firm internships. Once recruiters find what they are looking for, they will place a prospective candidate in a pile of shortlisted applications for further scrutiny.

Keywords that consulting recruiters are looking for vary. If you planned your consulting path well, you’d want to include the university that you graduated from (which is hopefully where other consultants in the company came from too). Notable positions in school organizations should also be included, as this shows that you took on a leadership role as oppose to just being a member who attends the events.

How to Show That You’re Well Rounded

Most consulting applicants have the same set of credentials. Most have the same high GPA range, types of consulting-related organizations and internship credits. Top consulting firms are looking for something more. They are looking for well-rounded applicants that not only have an exceptional educational background, but also have social and organizational skills.

In order to show that you are well rounded, you need to add small details to your consulting resume that says something about your personality. This could be achievements related to team sports, which show that you can work well with others. Another example would be programs wherein you served as a volunteer at a foundation or cause. These examples indicate the type of person you are without bluntly bragging about yourself.

What about the Cover Letter?

A great resume is almost useless without a great cover letter. Before a consulting recruiter reads the resume, he or she must first be won over by the cover letter. In other words, the effort and time that you spent writing a resume would go to waste without matching it with an equally superior cover letter.

Some of the advice mentioned above can also be applied when writing a consulting cover letter. One must include keywords and phrases. It is best practice to keep your cover letter short, around 3-4 paragraphs. The start of the cover letter should include a brief introduction of yourself, as well as why you’re applying for the vacant position. Keep the tone of the cover letter professional, but also keep it personalized to show that you are not a robot.

There is certainly no room for casual phrases in your cover letter. Instead, use adjectives that are associated with human qualities such as excited, motivated, inspired, influenced and encouraged. These words can add value to your cover letter, which can make the recruiter curious about your personality and character.

Refine and Revise

Don’t forget to refine your resume after the final draft. Lastly, second opinions from friends and colleagues can help catapult your resume from superior to perfect. Good luck!

ConsultingFact is an online hub for consulting applicants who are preparing for the interview process. Daniel Stefanac, founder of ConsultingFact and former McKinsey consultant, launched the website in order to help aspiring consultants land their dream job. A comprehensive online course is available for individuals who want to ensure that they cover all the aspects of the consulting recruitment process. There are also consulting guides available for download, which covers case interview frameworks, personality exams and other important elements during preparation. 

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Best Management Consulting Resume Writing Tips7ratecR8xuf02017-09-10 16:43:12This is a guest post provided by In the management consulting industry, everything counts. In order to prevent your application…