Translate your military skills into a civilian resume

The skills you developed in the service are in high demand among civilian employers like Verizon. But describing your military experience to a civilian audience can be challenging. That’s why we’ve developed this résumé guide—a blueprint for the brave—to help you translate the skills and experience you gained during your service into a résumé that resonates with civilians.

Explain how your experience makes you a good fit for the job.

Don’t just state that you were an infantry platoon sergeant. Explain your rank, military grade, what you were accountable for, how many people you supervised and what skills uniquely qualify you for the position you’re pursuing. This professional summary can take the form of a bulleted list or a paragraph.

Explain how your experience makes you a good fit for the jobExplain how your experience makes you a good fit for the job

Showcase your education and training.

Roles and job titles often vary between military service and civilian employers. For example, in the service, “communications” refers to information technology; among civilian organizations, “communications” typically refers to marketing and public relations. Educate yourself on the civilian job market to ensure that you’re using the appropriate titles and descriptions.

Don't limit education and training to completed formal education or degreesInclude all education and any accolades received
Don't limit education and training to completed formal education or degreesInclude all education and any accolades received

Match your military roles with corresponding civilian functions.

Include your educational background and highlight relevant coursework, training programs and certifications that you have completed or are undertaking.

Don't limit your military roles to just the job titleDescribe your role's specific responsibilities
Don't limit your military roles to just the job titleDescribe your role's specific responsibilities

Convert your military experience into civilian responsibilities.

Explaining to future employers what you accomplished in the military in a way that resonates can be challenging. Convey your military successes by using language that someone who doesn’t have a military background can understand and relate to. Follow the tips below to make sure you get the attention you deserve!

List any volunteer experience, showcase your skills, even mention personal interests.

List volunteer experience, showcase skills and even mention personal interestsList volunteer experience, showcase skills and even mention personal interests


Employers are looking for your skills—you just need to help them understand what you have to offer. We have resources to help you find employment opportunities.

Contact A Military RecruiterUse Our Military Skills Matcher