En Route: A Career Blog

The Professional Touch – Job Titles – Also Known as Tag Lines

AUTHOR: Darlene Zambruski
CATEGORY: , ,
POSTED: December 25, 2007 at 9:10 am

by Darlene Zambruski, CPRW, SME

A tag line can say so much more than an Objective and in a minimum of space. In today’s time intensive workplace, hiring managers appreciate information that’s delivered in a concise and well-prioritized fashion. Tag lines do just that whether they are specific or general.

A COMPARISON OF SPECIFIC AND GENERAL TAG LINES

Specific

Oracle Database Administrator
Elementary Teacher – Grades K-5
CPA – Tax Planning
Immigration Attorney
Portfolio Manager

General

IT Professional
Educator
Accountant
Lawyer
Financial Services Professional

TO ACHIEVE THE MOST MILEAGE OUT OF TAG LINES

1. Use specific tag lines whenever you’re applying to a job posting.
2. Use general tag lines when you’re distributing many resumes to numerous industries.
3. If you’re new to the field, it’s best to use a general tag line to increase opportunities.
4. If you have specialized expertise and want to remain in that niche, use specific tag lines.

JOB TITLES – ANSWERS TO FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

QUESTION: I want to keep my resume as general as possible to apply for all opportunities, so isn’t it smart to use “Profile” or “Summary of Qualifications” rather than any tag line?

ANSWER: Not really. In the modern workplace there are no “one size fits all” jobs. However, many jobs require multiple talents beneath one job heading. This would include:

Administrative Assistants who handle reception, word processing, mailing, and in many cases, bookkeeping.

Communication Professionals who are charged with marketing, public and media relations, graphics, and website design.

Sales Professionals experienced in inside/outside sales, B2B sales, consumer sales, etc.

In each of the above, a general tag line covers many opportunities, while also being specific enough to engage a hiring manager.

QUESTION: What if I’m transitioning from one career to another? How do I reflect that in a tag line?

ANSWER: Your best bet would be to use the word “Candidate” before an actual job title as listed on a posting (or for the general industry), while also indicating past experience that can be transitioned towards the new career. For example:

Candidate: Commercial/Individual Insurance Sales – B2B/B2C Sales Experience

Candidate: Insurance Sales – B2B/B2C Sales Experience

QUESTION: I’m looking to apply for a position within the federal government. Are tag lines the same for those postings as for private sector resumes?

ANSWER: Tag lines for federal positions are far more specific and should include the agency and the vacancy announcement number. For example:

Legal Secretary – State Department – Vacancy Announcement # 20057

JOB TITLES (TAG LINES) – EXAMPLES

Specific:

Physician: Pharmaceuticals & Biotechnology
Law School Candidate: Intellectual Property Law Experience
Manager – Telecommunications
Vice-President – Academic Affairs
Business Developer – Entertainment Industry
Graduate School Candidate: Mathematical Finance Program

General:

Consultant
Senior Project Manager
Journalist
Sales Professional

Darlene Z.

Darlene Zambruski is a resume writing expert and CPRW (Certified Professional Resume Writer) with more than 13 years of industry experience. She has authored 10,000+ resumes in every industry and at every career level.

» Read Full Bio

Sign Up for the En Route Newsletter

Career articles, resume advice, and interview tips delivered every month!

Propel Your Career

Get to the next level faster with professional Resume Writing or Editing products.

My writer took the time to give me practical tips on resumes and what prospective employers look for. She explained her suggestions and allowed me to give feedback as well. Her approach to resume writing is fantastic.

— Anna G.
Information Technology
» See All Testimonials

We're Busy Little Bees

279
Resumes Written This Month
100,000
Resumes Written Since 1998