A CV objective section used to be an essential part of writing a successful CV. However, in this day and age, the fact of the matter is that including a completely separate section just to state your professional objective is old fashioned and frankly, unnecessary. Before we continue, let’s recall what a CV objective is in the first place.
Simply put, a CV objective states your professional career goals. It can be as straightforward as stating your desired job role, or it can be a bit more broad by giving a summarized idea of your career history and where you hope to go in the future.
Whether you choose to use an online cv builder or create a CV from square one, the following guide will help you discover how to write an up-to-date CV objective that will catch the eye of a potential employer, as well as maximize space on your CV.
What is a CV objective?
A CV objective is a statement of your employment goals, usually placed at the top of a CV. In one or two sentences, it should summarize your skills and accomplishments in a way that demonstrates that you are the ideal candidate for the position at hand.
The trick to creating an effective CV objective is to tailor it to the job position at hand --- yes, that means you should create a different CV for each job that you apply for. Basically, your objective should describe the kind of career you are seeking, as well as the skills and experiences that make you an exemplary person for said profession. You may also include where you have been, and where you want to go in your career path.
For example, you can present some of your past achievements, and then comment on the kinds of accomplishments you hope to achieve in the future (preferably, those that you want to accomplish for the company that you are applying to).
In the end, stating an objective is optional. However, it can be a helpful tool to prove that you know what you want and are familiar with the industry, ultimately convincing employers that you are a perfect fit for the job.
When to use a CV objective
When and where should you include an objective within your CV, and when is it unnecessary?
There has been a lot of debate over whether the use of an objective section on your CV is actually necessary. Some human resource advisors say that objectives are no longer needed and others argue that they are out of date. With that being said, you must keep in mind that a CV objective is an optional element and each candidate can make the decision whether to include it or not.
Likewise, in some instances the decision of whether to utilize an objective or not, can be made by considering the kind of cv layout you will utilize. For instance, some CV structures avoid a separate CV objective section or executive summary section all together. In addition, certain job positions may require a very specific kind of CV format that does not call for an objective. In this case, it is best to stick to the job posting suggestions and not include an objective section.
The truth of the matter is that recruiters no longer recommend including a separate section within your CV just for the CV objective. One point being that an objective stating that you want to work for the company that you are applying for is, to say the least, obvious. Hiring managers already know that you want the job; that’s why you are applying for it, afterall. Furthermore, career objectives have traditionally been used in order to demonstrate the candidate’s own professional goals without necessarily taking into account the needs of the company. By utilizing an executive summary instead of a CV objective you can more fully express your understanding of the company’s objectives and how you are capable of uniquely accomplishing them. In these modern times, if you wish to include a professional objective within your CV, the best option is to include it as a part of your executive summary.
Despite the debate, emphasizing professional goals that highlight your strengths and abilities within your executive summary can enhance your CV by convincing employers that you know exactly what you want, that you have the skills needed to accomplish the job, and that your goals not only align with the employer’s objectives for the company and job at hand, but that they are in fact one in the same.
How to write an effective CV objective
The key to writing a successful CV objective is to tailor it to the specific job position to which you are applying. That means you should tailor your professional summary and objective to fit the job description and the company at hand. By using the same generic summary for each of your applications, you are essentially losing a vital opportunity to set yourself apart from the crowd. By personalizing your objective in order to include the required qualifications and attributes listed in the job posting, you will demonstrate your unique capability for the job. This will show that you not only pay attention to detail, but that you take the application and the position at hand seriously.
Connect the job role with your past work experiences, as well as where you aspire to go professionally in the future. This will give the hiring manager a better idea of who you are and where you intend to go professionally. Yet, don’t simply write your objective with only your goals in mind. Try to write it from the point of view of the employer. Take into account the company’s targets, as well as the aims for the particular job role. Demonstrate that your objectives align with the company needs, and that you are fully capable of meeting these goals through your unique abilities.
Most common CV objective errors
- One of the most common CV objective errors occurs when candidates write about their personal goals, leaving out the job position and company or institution that they are applying to. A great way to strengthen your CV is to incorporate the job role and company to which you are submitting your application, as well as some of the company’s objectives. Connect the company’s targets with your own aims and demonstrate how their objectives align with your professional goals. It is crucial that you sell yourself as a valuable asset to their institution by showing that their objectives and your objectives are one in the same.
- Hiring managers and recruiters know when applicants list the same general objective for all of their applications, and are more likely to take you seriously as a candidate if you craft a CV objective based on your application at hand. Job hunters make a big mistake by utilizing the same general objective for all of their applications, regardless of the change in position or company. They are essentially missing the chance to sell themselves as the perfect fit for the job. As mentioned before, in order to show hiring managers, recruiters, and/or your potential employer that you are seriously committed to the job at hand, you should write a tailored objective for each of your applications. This will show that you have taken the time to create a personalized CV and that you have taken this application in particular into careful consideration.
Example CV objectives
Below are some examples of job listing descriptions along with a tailored executive summary and highlighted career objective for each.
Job Position: Corporate Social Responsibility Specialist
Job Listing Description:
The Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Specialist plays a significant role in supporting the company’s charitable donations programs, as well as corporate sustainability reporting. This individual manages day-to-day operations of our corporate contributions including grant program workflow and budgetary and regulatory reporting.
Required Education: Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent combination of education and experience Business, Finance, Marketing or Communications or related field
Required Experience: 2-4 years Business, Finance, Marketing or Communications or related field
Preferred Experience: 4-7 years Business, Finance, Marketing or Communications or related field
Special Skill Requirements:
- Microsoft Office
- Operate Office Equipment
- Verbal Communication
- Written Communication
- Other: Detail Oriented
- Other: Resilient
- Other: Global Mindset
CSR Specialist Executive Summary Example:
For 7 years I have been influencing European Union (EU) policy on food, agriculture and trade from Paris, Brussels, and Amsterdam, giving me a thorough understanding of EU functions and allowing me to master techniques to shape society’s evolution. My greatest assets are my abilities to think strategically, show leadership, manage complex action plans and communicate effectively to a variety of stakeholders.
I have dedicated the past year to furthering my education, building a new professional network in Berlin and raising my two children. My next goal is to continue having a positive impact on society and the use of our finite resources, while joining the private sector to evolve in a challenging and fast-paced environment.
Job Position: E-Commerce Project Manager
Job Listing Description:
As part of the US team, reporting to the US President and to the Global Ecommerce Manager, this position will assist in launching the US e-commerce platform and support e-commerce activities, providing the best shopping experience to users and maximizing the business and profits of this new channel.
Education & Experience:
- 3+ years' experience in ecommerce project management and e-merchandising for a luxury or FMCG brand
- Bachelor's Degree or higher required
- Must be incredibly detail-oriented
- Demonstrated ability to bring structure to ambiguous environments and to work well with people at all levels of the organization
- Ability to work with multiple cross-functional groups, including business and technical teams
- Strong written and verbal communication skills
- Understanding of project management, as well as web and mobile technologies
- Technical knowledge of various systems
- >Experience in Demandware platform preferred but not required
E-Commerce Project Manager Executive Summary Example:
I am a versatile and driven FMCG professional with 5 years of experience in ecommerce project management, communication and marketing acquired in startups and SMEs from the FinTech and Food and Beverage industries. I have developed a truly international and cross-functional perspective while working on both business and technical teams, utilizing a Demandware platform, in Germany, Chile, and the U.S.
I am an avid learner with a passion for innovation and technology. My attention to detail, organizational skills, team spirit and ability to lead multiple projects in parallel allow me to thrive in complex, dynamic work environments. I am prepared to utilize my e-merchandising knowledge base in order to provide the best user experience for shoppers, while simultaneously maximizing commercial activity.
Job Position: Sales and Marketing Manager
Job Listing Description:
Sales and Marketing Manager is responsible for directing Rock Cafe sales and marketing efforts that align with the overall operating strategy. This individual will also support the Senior Leadership Team in upholding all brand standards, core values, while meeting or exceeding business objectives.
Experience, Education, And Certifications:
- 5+ years in a sales and marketing role preferably in a hospitality setting.
- Experience with CRM platforms.
- Expertise in social media platforms.
- Background in music industry a plus.
- Ability to learn and bring "out of the box" ideas to their team
- Genuine enthusiasm and aptitude for sales.
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
- High level of business acumen and common sense.
- Demonstrates strong problem solving skills through ability to diagnose and implement solutions.
- Must possess strong communication and listening skills, excellent speaking, reading and writing.
- Comprehend and use technical or professional language, either written or spoken, to communicate complex ideas.
- Ability to effectively pitch and present information in one-on-one and group situations to media, customers, clients, partners and other employees of the organization.
- Multiple language abilities a plus, fluency in English required.
Sales and Marketing Manager Executive Summary Example:
I am a bilingual Sales Manager with 6 years of experience using CRM platforms in music and entertainment industries to accomplish business objectives. As a people person, I thoroughly understand client and coworker needs, which enables me to build a strong, lasting relationship with them in addition to securing ongoing sales. During my studies, I developed extensive digital marketing and technological skills that I leverage to create strong personal and company brand images via social media platforms, as well as effectively communicate with my clients and team members.
My extensive industry knowledge and strong public speaking skills allow me to effectively present projects and marketing solutions to customers, partners, and fellow employees. My ability to remain positive and calm allows me to overcome new and challenging situations individually and as part of a team by utilizing effective problem-solving strategies to find success. By applying my past work experience, I am prepared to enthusiastically and responsibly direct sales and marketing efforts, as well as upholding Rock Cafe’s core principles.
Job Position: PHP Team Lead (Developer)
Job Listing Description:
Do you like challenges as well as working in international environments? We are looking for a PHP Team Lead with the following characteristics:
- PHP 5.6
- Teamcity (Java-based build management and continuous integration server)
- Github (version management)
- Entorno Linux
- Angular 1
Required Skills & Knowledge:
- Advanced level of English (Native or Bilingual)
- Agile methodologies
PHP Team Lead (Developer) Executive Summary Example:
Throughout my 9 years of experience as a Developer, I have lead software development projects with AGILE/SCRUM methodologies in Spain, Mexico, and the United States. For the last 3 years, I have been working in Austin, Texas’ renowned technology hub while serving as CTO and co-founder of my own company, Develop Inc.
After a total of 5 years building Develop Inc., as well as leading a team of 6 software engineers, I have successfully sold the company. Now, I am looking for new challenges in technological consulting, where I can put my experience leading software development and information network projects to good use.
CV objective tips
As mentioned before, the up-to-date version of a CV objective is actually an executive summary. Instead of opting for a completely separate section to write your professional goal, it’s recommended that you utilize a compact professional synopsis with your work history, skills and qualifications, as well as your objectives (as they relate to the job position at hand).
The number one tip when writing a CV objective statement, whether as a part of your executive summary or in a completely separate section, is to customize it according to the job role and company to which you are applying. Read the job position listing. Take notice of the skills and necessary qualifications that are required. This is what the hiring manager will be looking for in your CV. Make it easier for them to find these qualities within your CV by making them a part of your executive summary, as well as your CV objective. Try to get a sense of what the company needs from you as a potential employee and demonstrate that you are the ideal candidate with all the necessary abilities to successfully complete the job. It is especially important that you demonstrate that you not only comprehend the company’s needs in regard to the job at hand, but that you can effectively fulfill them through your individual professional value.
By incorporating a tailored CV objective within an outstanding executive summary, you will amplify your first effort to engage recruiters.
Strengthen your application by utilizing these first few sentences in order to concisely, yet thoroughly, demonstrate your qualifications to accomplish the job at hand.