Present your volunteer work on your resume to gain an edge over the competition. Learn the steps to present your volunteer experience effectively.
Step 1: Research employer's interest Research the potential employer's interest in volunteer organizations. If you feel your experience conflicts with the organization, leave it off the resume.
Step 2: Center the resume on volunteer work Center your resume around your volunteer work if you are a new graduate with little or no work experience. In the experience section of the resume, list the name of the organization, its location, your title, the dates you worked there, and your accomplishments.
Step 3: Detail the skills you gained Detail what specific skills you gained from volunteering that are relevant to the job you are seeking. These skills show you are qualified even if your experience was unpaid.
TIP: Consider any crossover skills, such as customer service, you may have gained from a volunteer job that would be helpful in the position you are seeking.
Step 4: Start with recent experience Start with volunteer experience that is most recent. If you have already graduated with your master's degree, for example, don't list volunteer experience from high school.
Step 5: Focus on work experience Focus more on relevant work experience if you are further along in your career path, and less on volunteer experience. Briefly list the organization's name and dates you volunteered. Now go get that new career!
FACT: According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 63.4 million Americans, or 26.8% of the population, volunteered for an organization between September 2008 and September 2009.