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Asked by nina on February 26, 2015

Hi, I'm currently making a career change from health to corporate. I'm enrolled in a Business Management BS & Marketing MBA program. What can I focus on in my resume to get my foot in the door?

Answered by Steve, Hiring Expert at Caterpillar Inc., on February 27, 2015

Any time that you are applying for a position for which you do not possess a great deal of on-the-job experience, it is critical for you to structure your resume in a way that emphasizes the other aspects of your background.  In your case, you would want to feature prominently your pursuit of your Marketing MBA.  This should come immediately after your contact information and a short summary of your career goals.  Next, you should focus on your leadership experience and other types of activities in which you participate on campus, in the community, at church, etc.  In particular, focus on any leadership roles that you have assumed in these activities.  These activities are important to list, in my opinion, as they speak to your character and the type of person that you are.  This is what could differentiate you from other candidates.

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Answered by Sara, Hiring Expert at American Express, on February 27, 2015

If your current role does not relate to the intended future field (i.e. health to marketing), you can focus first focus on core skills and attributes that are common and desireable among most careers. On your resume, highlight things like leadership, collaboration, cross-functional teamwork, research and results, strategy etc. These are all core skill-sets that employers are interested in their employees having or developing. 
Other ways to mke yourself stand out would include highlighting activities and leadership that you may be involved with in your current programs. Involvement and knowledge seeking through clubs and organizations will highlight to employers that you are making a deliberate and planned change and that you are building your knowledge base to be prepared for the work they make ask of you.
Also include some key highlights about your personal interests and community or volunteer work. These give employers a glimpse of your interests and personality. 
 
 

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Answered by Ellen, Hiring Expert at Hospira, on March 2, 2015

You have a great double major that you can highlight on your resume.  I'd also suggest that you highlight your internships and any leadership roles you were a part of.  These tend to be "standouts" and will go a long way as companies are revewing your resume.  I would also suggest that in a cover letter you state any accomplishments you had while in undergrad and grad school. You want to be able to differentiate yourself from other students.  Above all, fashion your resume to the roles of interest.  Keep it relevant to what you are seeking.  This too, will help you in the process.  Lastly, find out about the cultures of the companies of interest.  Fashion your summary statement that will fit the culture.  Doing this will help with the "fit" aspect of the process.

Best of luck! 

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Answered by Bryan, Hiring Expert at IBM Corporation, on March 12, 2015

Typically, on a resume, employers are looking for past successes. Indicators of this are often strong GPA, sound experience, and evidence of leadership. Even though your previous experience is in the health industry, be sure to highlight your experience on the business side. For instance, if you were a technician, you may have also created and submitted daily reports, collected and managed patient records, etc. Additionally, take the initiative to advance your skills in basic business tools such as Microsoft Excel and Powerpoint. While pursuing your MBA, participate in clubs that indicate a passion for and focus in an area of business such as marketing, general management, or finance. Finally, use social media to further tell your commitment to a career change by joining LinkedIn clubs which introduce you to new ideas as well as to individuals already in the field..

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