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How to write a personal statement for a job

All the tips you need to write a CV personal statement that makes you stand out from the crowd.

Contains 16 personal statement examples.

personal statement writing job

What is a personal statement?

A personal statement, also known as a personal profile, summarises what you can offer an employer in relation to the job you’re applying for.

“It needs to convince your audience that you’re a good fit for the role in hand” says McGuire, Founder of Giraffe CVs.

Senior HR Business Partner at  Amazon , Lucy Ventrice agrees “It’s your opportunity to sell yourself and highlight what sets you apart from others”.

The personal statement shouldn’t be confused with a supporting statement, which is similar to a cover letter.

The functional, chronological or hybrid styles of CV all require a personal statement.

Writing a personal statement can be challenging.

You have to condense your experience and skills into a few sentences.

The advice in this guide will help you produce a first class personal statement on your CV.

Writing a personal statement

Recruiters and employers like personal statements as they can easily see if you are a match in skills, experience and attitude to their job.

With over 100 applications for some vacancies this is a brilliant time saver. Recruiter will only read the rest of your CV if you’re personal statement signals you’ll add value.

You need to be able to sell yourself succinctly in your personal statement to stand out from the crowd.

Sharon Xenophontos, Senior HR Manager at  Macfarlanes LLP  sees it as “an opportunity to summarise your unique selling points and allow employers to quickly read ‘between the lines’ of your CV.”

Lucy Ventrice,  Senior HR Business Partner  at Amazon agrees “in a very competitive market you must focus on what experience, skills or attributes  you have that would benefit a future employer?”

How long should a personal statement be?

Sharon Xenophonotos,  Senior HR Manager  at Macfarlanes LLP recommends you “use proper sentences, a short paragraph of two to three sentences should be sufficient”.

Sally Whiteside, Head of HR for  Tesco  Online agrees “It should be short and sharp, representing your tone of voice to set you apart”.

Remember, the personal statement is a summary. You can expand on your successes elsewhere in your CV.

How to structure a personal statement

A personal statement should answer the question “why are you the best person for the job?” says Lucy Ventrice Senior HR Business Partner at Amazon.

She suggests “Start with a mind map. Put yourself in the middle and [write down] your experience, skills and attributes. Do the same with the future employer in the middle, what are they looking for in the job advert? Then compare the two and build from there.”

McGuire, a Professional CV Writer adds “while it may seem logical that your personal statement should be all about you, to be effective, it should be about your target employer and how you can meet their needs”.

Break this down into:

Sally Whiteside,  Head of HR  for Tesco Online agrees “The statement should be structured around your history of achievements, linking them all together to tell a compelling story of what it would be like to work with you and what value you will add to the company.”

How to start a personal statement

While introducing yourself in a career summary format, your opening sentence needs to “hook your reader, compelling them to read the next sentence, and the next” says McGuire, Founder of Giraffe CVs.

The opening sentence of your personal statement should include:

Example personal statement opening

Innovative Project Manager (Prince II Practitioner and Certified Scrum Master) with over 5 years’ experience managing complex IT projects for  a FTSE 100 company operating across the UK, Europe, India and South Africa.

How to end a personal statement

There are two ways to end your personal statement.

Senior HR Manager at Macfarlanes LLP, Sharon Xenophontos, finds it helpful if candidates let employers know what they are looking for. “It’s all part of the matching process” she says.

If you’re at a relatively early stage in your career state your career goal. Remember, your stated must relate to the role you’re applying for.

Example personal statement ending – entry level

My career goal is to gain responsibility for leading on a project and managing delivery successfully, actively contributing to achieving the business goals.

If you’re a bit further along in your career, state more specific goals and why you’d like to work for the employer.

Example personal statement ending –career developer

Hoping to join an innovative and dynamic company, and develop my social media and marketing skills further.

What should I include in my personal statement?

Here we’ve listed what to include in your personal statement, and what not to include.

Include in the personal statement

Don’t include in the personal statement

Personal statement examples

Since every personal statement is about one particular individual’s suitability for working for one particular employer, every personal statement should, in theory, be unique.

But we know getting started on a personal statement can be tough.

To help, we’ve curated some practical personal statement examples for you to base your personal statement on.

Half are for people in specific career stages / circumstances. Half are industry-specific. Use the links to jump to the one that suits you best.

Career stage / circumstance personal statements

Your current career stage or circumstance will have a major impact on both your employability, and how to present your employability in your CV.

We hope you can build upon the following sample personal statements to give your best representation of yourself in your next job application.

Unemployed personal statement

School leaver personal statement, graduate personal statement, career change personal statement, career break personal statement.

Industry-specific personal statements

Your skills, competencies and goals will be shaped hugely by the industry you work in. Accordingly, so will your personal statement.

We hope you’ll be able to find inspiration from one or more of the following sample personal statements as you write your own.

Nursing personal statement

Midwifery personal statement, teaching personal statement, teaching assistant personal statement, accounting personal statement, marketing personal statement, civil engineering personal statement, customer service personal statement, economics personal statement.

It’s important to carefully manage your unemployed status in your job application.

Our first piece of advice is to play down the fact you’re unemployed. Or, in other words, don’t write anything to highlight it.

Focus on the skills and experience you’re bringing to the role and the difference you can make.

Employers may wonder how up to date you are. You can address this head on in your personal statement by highlighting volunteering, attending training courses or reading trade journals or blogs to stay aware of industry trends.

Don’t worry too much about the gap on your CV. These days, employers are more understanding. After all, there are countless reasons why people become unemployed, for example redundancy or caring for dependants.

Unemployed: Sample CV template and guide

Unemployed personal statement example

Successful Sales Manager with over eight years’ experience in the Telecoms industry. Proven track record of success, including leading the top performing team in the region, and developing a sales training programme for all new staff. Now looking for the right opportunity to bring my skills to a dynamic IT software company in a management position.

School leavers worry they don’t have anything to put in a personal statement.

Jon Gregory, Editor of  Win that Job.com , who advises parents and teenagers to find work, has this advice:

“Employers are usually not recruiting school leavers for knowledge or experience. They want to understand why you’re interested in a particular job. If you ‘care about the environment’ or perhaps ‘love working with animals’, it’s that relevant individuality that counts.”

Gregory adds “Talk less about what you want and more about what you can give in the future. Show you are positive, proactive, determined and in it for the long haul”.

Think widely about how your hobbies or interests could be relevant. Gregory recommends that “if you have employability skills developed from other work, projects or interests, use them to demonstrate your potential.”

First job: Sample CV and guide

School leaver personal statement example

Motivated and enthusiastic student with a passion for design technology, especially woodwork. I am interested in completing a construction apprenticeship in joinery, as I have always enjoyed making things. I am good at maths and confident when taking measurements and I recently won a school award for my chair design.

When writing your first CV after graduating, Sue Moseley, Senior  Career Advisor  for London University recommends that you “think of your personal statement as the headline to your CV. A good headline grabs attention because it connects with something the reader cares about. So start with what the employer cares about and work from there”.

“Change your statement for each application even if it’s just a linguistic tweak to match the employer’s voice. If the job ad asks for ‘excellent customer experience’, using those terms in your statement will increase impact” she adds.

“The vital key to impact is evidence” she goes on to say “When an employer reads your statement, how do they know it’s true? Use examples and numbers, based on things you’ve done”.

Graduate: Sample CV template and guide

Graduate personal statement example

Customer experience: As a student ambassador I welcomed a group of 30 sixth formers and their families onto campus and received positive feedback about the clear and helpful way I handled questions.

Lis McGuire, Founder of Giraffe CVs says “show how your transferrable skills can be applied to your target career and convey energy, enthusiasm, and commitment ”. She adds “don’t fall into the trap of over-explaining yourself and the reasons for your transition”.

If you’re changing careers to move into HR, for example, highlight the relevant parts of your previous career such as people management, recruitment or inductions, training, and exclude the other less relevant areas of your roles.

Career change: Sample CV template and guide

Career change personal statement example

Experienced manager with 5 years’ experience in recruiting, inducting and training staff. Recently delivered change management and restructuring programme for two departments, sensitively managing redundancies and redeployments. Passionate about employee engagement and enabling staff to contribute fully to achieve business aims. Now looking for challenging HR role in the retail sector.

“When your CV lands on a hiring manager, or recruiter’s desk, the first questions they’ll have are, ‘Why did this person take a career break?’ and, ‘can they do this job?’” says Fay Wallis, founder of  Bright Sky Career Coaching . “Your personal statement is the best place to answer these questions and explain away any concerns” says Wallis.

She warns “don’t make your career break the focus of your CV though. Instead, make your experience and relevance for the role leap out at the person reading it”.

“Follow this with a brief reason for your career break. And end the personal statement with another reason that you are right for the role” Wallis adds.

Returning to work: Sample CV template and guide

Career break personal statement example

An experienced Communications Officer, with proven media relations, copywriting and proofreading skills within the voluntary sector. Looking to return to a communications role, following a career break to travel the world to experience other cultures. Recently qualified in social media management with a strong interest in working for a sustainability organisation.

Julie Watkins, Careers Advisor at  The Royal College of Nursing  suggests that  “your personal statement should include the kind of sector you have worked in, any relevant clinical fields and what you’re passionate about.” She goes on to say “this could include empowering patients to take ownership of their health and wellbeing or an interest in health promotion.”

Watkins adds “in the current fast paced environment of the NHS you must emphasise your resilience and flexibility.”

She also highlights “the need for a tailored personal statement, as it’s the one thing that will really make your CV to stand out in the health sector.”

Nursing personal statement example

Caring and efficient Nurse committed to safeguarding the medical needs and wellbeing of my patients and their families. Particularly skilled at building rapport with anxious patients and focused on providing a high standard of care that lead to improved patient recovery. Experienced in a number of specialist and complex fields including geriatrics, cardiac and maxillofacial. Excellent observational and record keeping skills to ensure continuity of care and team support. Looking to now develop experience in other clinical areas within a high performing Trust.

Lynne Pacanowski, Director of Midwifery at  Guy’s & St Thomas’ Hospital  suggests “identifying what you have learnt from working in different areas such as antenatal, community, labour ward, or from services such as midwife led or tertiary units, and use this in your personal statement.”

Include skills that will interest the Trust, for example, advising expectant mothers on diet, exercise and medications during pregnancy.

Pacaonwski recommends you “demonstrate that you understand the population of the area the Trust serves.”

She goes on to say “you can also highlight challenging situations you have been involved with, for example, difficult births, identifying when cesareans are needed, or supporting mothers with challenging home situations.”

Midwifery personal statement example

Professional, approachable and efficient Midwife committed to providing the best quality care and support for mothers and families throughout their pregnancies. Four years’ experience and a first honours midwifery degree from University of Liverpool. Extremely knowledgeable about all aspects of pregnancy including ante and postnatal nutrition, and supporting both low and high risk women in a hospital setting. Have experience in both medical and community midwifery, particularly with women from a variety of ethnic backgrounds. Recently trained in aromatherapy to support women mentally and physically during labour. Looking for a new position within a progressive Trust with a Birthing Centre.

Jo Postlethwaite, Head Teacher of  Somervale School , recommends that you get to know your target audience and says “Read everything you can about the setting. Read their vision statement. What can you say about yourself that shows you support this ethos?”

Secondly she recommends that you “Talk like a member of staff – spend a bit of time looking at the sort of language the establishment uses. Do they talk about pupils, students or children? Do they talk about ambition or aspiration? Ensure you use their words back to them.”

Additionally, it’s important to describe your teaching philosophy and enthusiasm for your subject.

Teaching personal statement example

Passionate Science Teacher striving to make a real difference to young people’s lives through engaging lessons matched to individual learning needs. Excellent behavioural management skills gained through vast experience of working in diverse academic settings. Experienced in developing lessons for a wide range of students. Now looking for a teaching role that offers more responsibility and management experience within a challenging and proactive school.

Jo Postlethwaite, Head Teacher of  Somervale School , feels that “simple is best. Don’t over complicate what you write. This is your opportunity to summarise your good points. So, be succinct, but don’t forget to highlight how you work closely with teachers and parents as well as pupils.”

Postlethwaite often has 50+ applications to read through so she wants to see candidates “showing their ‘unique selling points (USP). But don’t be tempted to go for a ‘wacky’ colour or design as this can be off-putting.”

Finally, Postlethwaite recommends you “check your spelling and grammar, not just for your personal statement but your whole application. Errors in applications for teaching or support roles would end up on the ‘no’ pile.”

Teaching assistant personal statement example

A highly motivated Teaching Assistant with four years experience and a caring and supportive attitude. Through my recent studies in Early Childhood, I am up to date with developments in Early Years Care and Education, and have recent experience in Reception and Y1 classes. I have supported children with special needs and helped with behaviour management in the playground. Happy to support teachers with developing learning materials and displaying work, and am also comfortable communicating with parents and carers. Now looking to broaden my experience with Y2 and 3 children.

Ex-Accountant turned Career Coach Diana Norris of  Career Balance  suggests that “you should think of your CV as the first report you will write for your new employer, and your personal statement as the executive summary. Your statement should show you can write succinctly and ensure your reader grasps the essentials of your argument.”

Norris goes on to add “anything you think an employer really needs to notice should be in your profile. If you’re fluent in another European language, and the organisation you’re applying to does business in the EU, don’t leave that information languishing at the bottom of the second page of your document.”

She also recommends that you “avoid over used phrases like “good team player”. She calls it ‘CV ‘blah blah blah’ language. Employers tend not to see it when they read a CV – their eyes slide over it.”

Accounting personal statement example

Experienced and qualified Accountant with a sound understanding of financial controls and processes. A strong commercial awareness combined with the ability to analyse and produce high quality management reports to tight deadlines. Specific experience of developing cost saving practices, budget management and forecasting within the retail and utilities sectors. Now looking to broaden experience specifically in an IT firm.

Kate Kassis, Marketing Manager for  Harrods  has the following advice for would-be marketing executives: “Keep it concise and avoid unnecessary use of adjectives. Simple yet effective language skills are key to any marketing role.”

Kassis goes on to say: “Be honest. Don’t over-sell but, where possible, look to include a commercial angle. Creativity is key in Marketing but the ability to think strategically is even more important”.

When she’s recruiting, Kassis looks for something that tells her the applicant has the ability to ‘run with it’. This means working to deadlines, managing and presenting to stakeholders, delivering results and critically analysing.

Marketing personal statement example

Intuitive Marketing Executive skilled at increasing sales through diligent research and efficient resource allocation. Especially adept at managing complex projects while also developing key stakeholder relationships. Able to maximise profits whilst working within a tight marketing budget. Enjoy identifying client needs and delivering practical short and long term solutions. Now looking or a new role to develop my digital marketing skills.

“A good personal statement should focus on three key themes – your postgraduate experience, including details of chartership; the range of technical skills you have developed; and how you apply these to consultancy” says Rob Delahunty, Associate Director at  Webb Yates Engineers .

“You’ll really stand out to an employer”, says Delahunty, “if you can show how these themes transfer to the workplace. Highlight your ability to work within a design team with architects, contractors and other specialists; show how your specialist IT knowledge or skill for analysis was applied to project challenges; and demonstrate your experience in assessing the environmental or safety impact of a project.”

Delahunty recommends: “Include any licences, industry accreditation, security clearances and certification you have, as they establish you as a recognised professional in the industry.”

Civil engineering personal statement example

An ambitious and highly motivated Civil Engineer with strong practical and technical skills, consistently finishes commercial and residential projects under budget and on schedule. Sound knowledge of designing, testing and evaluating overall effectiveness, cost, reliability, and safety of a design. Advocates for environmentally-conscious design and cost-effective public infrastructure solutions. Currently seeking a challenging professional position within a cutting edge engineering practice.

“Convey your enthusiasm for the role as employers are looking for staff who will represent them and their brand in a positive way. Highlight if you won any awards or suggested a change that benefited customers in some way” suggests Amanda Reuben, Experienced Fashion & Retail Brands Recruiter and Founder of  Bijou Recruitment .

Reuben wants to see a number of personal qualities displayed in a Customer Service personal statement. She says, “you want your candidate to be friendly, warm and engaging whilst also remaining calm under pressure.” She also recommends that you show how you have managed customer expectations or dealt with difficult situations.

Think what you associate with the brand or company – are they fast paced and focused on efficient service, or do they like you to take time with customers. Show you understand and can support their approach.

Customer service personal statement example

A well-presented, patient and friendly Customer Service Advisor with a proven track record of building relationships by providing information on additional products and services and helping customers find the right ones to meet their needs. A genuine ‘can-do’ attitude demonstrated through a number of staff awards, and an excellent telephone manner combines to contribute to the growth of any business. Trained in effectively resolving customer complaints and now looking for a suitable position to take on more responsibility and expand retail experience.

For your personal statement to stand out, Dr Chris Sherrington, Head of Environmental Policy and Economics for  Eunomia , an independent consultancy recommends you “show creativity in the way you’ve approached problems. This is important as there can be subject areas within specialist fields where outcomes can’t easily be quantified.”

He goes on to say “also show how you’ve offered relevant advice based on sound economic principles, and where you’ve successfully made the best use of the data that’s available.” This could be in a report you’ve produced or some analysis you’ve delivered.

Economics personal statement example

Proactive Economist with 5 years’ experience in both public and private sector, and specific expertise in healthcare trends. Extremely skilled in market trend analysis, financial modelling and business planning, having delivered a comprehensive management report on a proposed outsourcing opportunity. Enjoy developing productive industry and internal relationships to increase understanding of business needs and economic impact. Now looking for a role to further develop my strategic planning skills within the environmental sector.

Personal statement do’s and don’ts

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How to Write a Personal Statement for a Job (with Examples)

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If you need to write a personal statement, here's your guide. We'll cover: 

The 3 essential parts of a personal statement

What is a personal statement? 

A personal statement is a brief description of why you’re qualified for and interested in the job you’re applying for. Your personal statement should tell employers why your training, education, experience, and career goals make you the best fit for the job.

You may include a personal statement at the top of your resume (similar to an objective statement or resume summary ) or the employer may request that you attach a personal statement to your application (though this is not the same thing as a cover letter , which is longer and more detailed).

When writing your personal statement, start by telling the employer who you are as a professional. Maybe you’re a marketing consultant with five years of paid media experience, or maybe you’re a teacher with in-depth knowledge of diverse learning styles and the Montessori method.

2. The what

What skills, abilities, or qualities do you have that would be useful in the position? 

Do you have a relevant degree or hold an industry certification ? Do you have soft skills —like public speaking, mentorship, or adaptability —that are particularly relevant to the role?

Use this section to share why you want the job you’re applying for or why you’re passionate about the industry or the population you will serve in the role. For example, if you’re applying for a social media manager job, you could mention that you enjoy running a platform that helps people stay connected and that you like coming up with new ways to engage online followers.

The why is particularly important for those pursuing a career change or career shift. 

Read ore: How to List Work History on Your Resume

Tips for writing your personal statement

Do use a professional tone. 

Don’t include personal information, like your marital status, ethnicity, or age.  

Do include relevant skills, such as project management or data analysis, or qualities, like collaborative or flexible. 

Don’t use the personal pronoun I if the personal statement appears on your resume. If it is a separate part of your application, you can use the first person I.

Do adhere to word count requirements if the employer stipulates them. Otherwise, keep it brief—roughly three to five sentences (or fifty to sixty words).

Example #1 - Personal statement that does not appear on resume

I’m an experienced copywriter with 10+ years of experience writing quality digital content and adept at conveying the unique tone of a brand across channels. In my previous role, I increased clients’ social media followers from 15K to 30K in less than three months. I’m excited about using my writing, editing, and content management skills to fulfill the senior marketing copywriter position with XYZ Marketing. 

Example #2 - Personal statement that appears on resume

Web developer with wide-ranging knowledge of programming languages, including Java, HTML, Python, and SQL. Proficient in creating, maintaining, and improving user-friendly websites for B2B companies. Able to translate technical language and concepts to non-technical user groups. Eager to bring experience in UX/UI design, testing, and search engine optimization to a forward-thinking startup. 

Example #3 - Personal statement for a career change, does not appear on resume

I’m a tenacious customer service professional who can balance competing tasks while maintaining service quality. I’m empathetic, focused, and detail-oriented, and I’m skilled at training customers on products and services and increasing client adoption. I am seeking a role in product management where I can use my experience in customer service, product use cases, training, and client retention to build tools that drive business. 

Example #4 - Personal statement for a career change, appears on resume

Certified electrician with more than seven years in the field and five years as a manager seeking a role in maintenance project management. Experienced in contract work as well as staff positions with private companies and government agencies. Strong attention to detail that is useful when completing wiring installations, reviewing contracts, and performing quality checks. Prepared to bring a team-oriented approach to your organization.

Read more:  How to Ace a Panel Interview

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Building Better Opportunities - How To Write A Personal Statement For A Job?

How To Write A Personal Statement For A Job? Employment

Personal statements are often used in job applications, but can also be used for college and university applications, too. Here, we’ll give you some hints and tips for creating a personal statement for a job that goes the distance. Read on to find out more! 

What is a personal statement? 

First thing’s first…what is it?

A personal statement for a job is usually a paragraph about you that goes on the top of your CV. It’s sometimes known as a personal profile, professional profile, or even a career objective – so keep an eye out for these kinds of terms too in your job hunt.

Your personal statement should be an ‘ overview of you ,’ covering things like: who you are, why you think you are suitable for the role, what you will bring to the job, and your career goals. 

If you are wondering why a personal statement is important (after all, shouldn’t all that be in your CV anyway?) it’s worth knowing that recruiters get 100s of CVs sent to them every single day. And on average they spend about 6 seconds looking at a CV before making a decision on the candidate. So, having a personal statement at the top of your CV gives a brief, easy to read summary that will hook the recruiter in and make them want to call you in for an interview. 

Example of a personal statement for a job: 

A friendly and enthusiastic individual, currently looking to return to a retail assistant role after spending the last 3 years raising a family. I possess excellent communication and listening skills, and I work extremely well in a team, as well as being able to work confidently on my own. I have recently volunteered at a local charity shop, as a sales assistant, to refresh my skills, and I am committed to continuing my career on a full-time basis. 

How to write a personal statement

Like the example above, your personal statement should be short and sweet. Remember, your aim is to catch the attention of the recruiter so they read your CV in more depth before inviting you to interview. 

Before you start, it’s best to sit down with your updated CV and make a list of all of your relevant skills and experience. Examples of skills you could include are: 

Once you have a list of these things, it should be a lot easier to pull together an effective personal statement. 

What if I have no work experience? 

Having no work experience doesn’t mean you can’t write a good personal statement. There are plenty of other ways you can demonstrate your skills. Do you have a hobby or an interest? If you do, it’s likely you use key skills to do this and the best part is you can put this in your personal statement. Similarly, if you were involved in any clubs, teams or projects at school. 

The key to writing an effective personal statement is keeping it relevant to the role you are applying to. So make sure you read the job advert and any accompanying information thoroughly to understand what the employer is looking for! 

What do I put at the start of my personal statement? 

Many, many people struggle to write about themselves. So, if this is you, don’t worry! To kick off your personal statement, see if you can come up with a short, sharp statement (no longer than one sentence) that describes you accurately. 

This could be one that highlights your previous work experience: 

‘A flexible construction worker with three years’ experience in bricklaying, roofing, plastering and plumbing.’ 

Or one that shows skills and experience you have from hobbies, interest or education: 

‘A hardworking individual with a passion for creativity alongside a Distinction in Level 3 Graphic Design.’

Again, keep it short. And don’t forget to big yourself up a little bit! Make the recruiter believe that you are the best person for the role you are applying for. 

What goes in the middle of a personal statement?

When it comes to writing your personal statement, it’s best to have at least a loose structure in mind to help you get everything down that you need to. You could include: 

Use the answers to these questions to write your personal statement. 

What goes at the end of a personal statement? 

The end of your personal statement should make it clear to whoever is reading what your goals are professionally. For example, the construction worker above may put: 

‘Looking to take on my next challenge in the world of construction, and develop my skills with a reputable local business.’

Or, for the aspiring graphic designer: 

‘Looking for a start in the exciting world of graphic design, where I can learn from the best with a creative and innovative company.’ 

Remember: keep it brief! 

Do’s and Don’ts for your personal statement 

To help you on your way, here is a list of the do’s and don’ts for your personal statement. 

Need a bit more help?

If you need help in writing your CV or personal statement, we can help. For a detailed and private 1-2-1 with one of advocates who can advise, please call 01902 96228 or fill in the form below to request a callback.

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How To Write a Personal Statement for Job Searching

Madeleine Burry writes about careers and job searching for The Balance. She covers topics around career changes, job searching, and returning from maternity leave, and has been writing for The Balance since 2014.

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Different Types of Personal Statements

What you should include, tips for writing a job search personal statement, examples of personal statements.

Kiyoshi Hijiki / Getty Images

What's a personal statement, and why do you need one when you're job searching? A job search personal statement is a place to share why you're interested in a position and why you're a good match.

In your statement, you can get a bit personal—use the space to share details and insights about yourself, and forge a connection with potential employers. Here are some tips on how to write a successful personal statement that will further your job search.

A personal statement may be included in your curriculum vitae  or CV. Much like an in-person elevator speech or the summary section within a resume, a CV personal statement highlights your objectives and abilities. Since a CV may stretch over several pages, this allows you to showcase must-see details from within the document. You'll want to write just a few sentences for a personal statement in a CV.  

Or, you may need to write a personal statement as part of a job application. This helps hiring managers to separate out candidates applying for every job in a category (e.g., putting in applications for any "production manager" position) from more engaged candidates, who are interested in the company.

Write something that matches the application's requested word count; if one isn't provided, aim for 250 to 500 words. Regardless of where it appears, your goal in a personal statement is the same: try to connect your background and goals with the job at hand.

In your personal statement, you want to make a connection between yourself and the position. Think of this as a three-part process:

While it's called a personal statement, avoid over-sharing. Only include information that's relevant to the job at hand. That is if you're applying for a position as an accountant, no need to mention your goal of becoming a staff writer at a magazine.

Remember, the main goal of your personal statement is for it to further your job search.

Your personal statement should always be personalized—it's a mistake to reuse the same personal statement for every job you apply for. You don't need to write the personal statement from scratch each time—just make tweaks so it reflects the needs of the company and the qualities requested in the job description.

Here are more tips for writing a successful job search personal statement:

Here are some examples of personal statements to use as inspiration:

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How to write a good personal statement when applying for jobs

How to write a good personal statement when applying for jobs

What is a personal statement? A personal statement is a concise summary or paragraph that tells the reader exactly what you can bring to the job. It is a critical part of any job application; it is your opportunity to show the employer what makes you unique and why you are the best candidate.

Personal statements for CVs are like the cream atop a cake, as the cake is dry without the icing. Are you tired of the same old statement you have been using? Is it not getting you anywhere? This article will discuss how to write a good personal statement that will make you stand out from the competition.

We will provide tips and advice on what to include in your statement and examples of personal statements that have helped candidates land their dream jobs.

Remember, the first impression carries a lot of weight, and a personal statement is the carrier of that impression. Coming up with a unique way of describing your talents and skills can go a long way when getting a job. That is because it keeps the reader engaged and gives him relevant information about you.

With that said, let's begin!

Tips to write a good personal statement for CVs 

Here are a few qualities of a good personal statement. We suggest you read them thoroughly; you may learn a lot from them.

Keep it short and concise

The personal statement should be no longer than a paragraph or two. It summarises who you are and what you can offer the company. Therefore, it should be concise and to the point. Ensuring it is accurate shows the employer that you know what they are looking for. It also shows your summarisation skills as you can present what is crucially required in a few sentences.

Highlight your strengths

Your statement should highlight the strengths and qualities that make you the best candidate. That will give the employer an idea of what you can bring to the table and how you can contribute to the company's success. That helps you win over your potential employer and allows you to leave a solid, positive impression that can help you get the job.

As we mentioned before, first impressions are everything. You want to make sure that your statement is different from everyone else's so that you stand out from the rest of the applicants. Be creative and try to find a way to make it memorable. That will ensure that the employer remembers you when making their final decision. After all, a great personal statement for resumes is what allows you to stand out from the rest.

Evidence off your skills

When writing your statement, it is important to include evidence of your skills and qualities. That will show the employer that you are not just making empty claims but have actual proof to back up what you are saying. For example, if you are claiming to be a great team player, mention an instance where you had to work with a team and the project's successful outcome. That will add weight to your claims and make them more believable.

Use action words

When describing your skills and experiences, use action words such as "achieved," "created," "improved," etc. That will make your statements more powerful and give the employer a better idea of your capabilities. Furthermore, using such language makes you sound more confident in your abilities, which is always good.

Use simple language

It is important to use simple language that everyone can understand because the employer may not be familiar with technical jargon, and using such terms might make you sound like you are trying to show off. Therefore, it is best to use layperson's terms so that your statement can be easily understood.

Here are a few examples of good personal statements

Now that we have gone over what makes a good personal statement let's look at some examples of statements that have helped candidates land their dream jobs.

"I am a recent graduate of XYZ University, and I am looking for an opportunity to use my skills and knowledge in a real-world setting. I believe that my background in XXX makes me the perfect candidate for this job."

"I am an experienced XXX with more than X years of experience in the YYY industry. I am looking for a new challenge, and I believe that this job is perfect for me. I am confident that I have the skills and knowledge needed to excel in this position."

"I am a motivated individual with a strong work ethic. I have X years of experience in the XXX industry, and I am looking for an opportunity to use my skills in a new setting. I believe that I would be a great asset to your team, and I am eager to learn new things."

Here are a few things to avoid when writing a personal statement for a CV

Please don't make it too long.

Your statement should be concise and to the point; this is not the time to write your life story or list every one of your experiences and skills. Keep it short, sweet, and interesting so that the employer will want to read more.

Don't use clichés

Using clichés such as "I'm a people person" or "I'm a go-getter" will not impress the employer. It might even turn them off. Be original and try to stand out from the rest of the applicants.

Don't lie

It is very important to be honest in your statement. Lying about your skills or experience will only come back to bite you later on. Be truthful and transparent so that the employer can get an accurate idea of who you are.

As you can see, there are many approaches to writing a personal statement. However, as long as you keep the tips we have mentioned in mind, you should be able to write a good personal statement that will help you land your dream job.

After all, that is how the best personal statements for CVs are made! If you made it to the end of this blog, we believe you are more than ready to start writing the personal statement of your dreams!

For more information, please visit the FAQs section below.

Frequently Asked Questions about personal statements 

How long should my personal statement be.

Your statement should be around 50-100 words. Any longer than that, you run the risk of boring the employer or including too much information.

What should I include in my personal statement?

You should include your skills, experience, and motivation for applying for the job in your statement. Try to stand out from the rest of the applicants and be original.

What should I not include in my personal statement?

You should avoid using clichés, lying, or including too much information. Stick to the important points and be concise.

Can I use slang words in my personal statement?

It is best to avoid using slang words in your statement because the employer may not be familiar with them and might make you sound unprofessional.

Photo by  Marten Bjork  on  Unsplash

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How to write a personal statement.

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by Michael Cheary

Not sure what to include in your personal statement?

Although a personal statement can have many uses (whether it’s for university or for your CV ), its purpose is always based around selling yourself to the reader. Not only do you have to summarise your skills and experience, you also have to make sure it’s relevant to what you’re applying for.

So how can you help your personal statement stand out? To make sure you’re doing it right, here are our top tips to consider when writing your personal statement for your CV:

What is a personal statement?

A personal statement is a brief personal summary given to prospective employers to help you stand apart from the competition. A personal statement is also required for university applications, but will usually be much more detailed.

Personal statements for university

Why do I need a personal statement?

Your personal statement is one of the most important parts of your CV .

It gives you a chance to sell yourself to the employer in a small and easy-to-digest paragraph. By summing up the specific skills and experience that make you perfect for the position, you’ll be able to prove your suitability and convince the recruiter to read on.

In fact, a well written personal statement can mean the difference between standing out from the crowd and your application being rejected.

Hard Skills v Soft Skills

How long should a personal statement be?

Ideally, your personal statement should be no more than around 150 words (or four or five lines of your CV). Any more than this and you run the risk of rambling and taking up valuable space.

Remember: it’s a summary, not a cover letter . So keep it concise, pertinent and to the point.

Try reading our personal statement examples to help you get started.

How to start a personal statement 

When writing your personal statement, keep in mind its purpose – i.e. to demonstrate to hiring managers your suitability for the role. 

The opening sentence needs to interest the reader and make them want to continue reading. However, it shouldn’t be too ‘salesy’ as you don’t want to come across as arrogant. A suitable start to your personal statement could mention your current job title, how many years of experience you have, what role you’re interested in and reasons why you consider yourself suitable for the job. 

The art of writing a persuasive personal statement is adding in lots of detail (without waffling), and making it relevant to the job you’re applying for.

What to include in a personal statement?

Successful personal statements answer the following questions:

To make sure you’ve ticked all the boxes, consider bullet-pointing answers to these when drafting your personal statement. And, if you’re struggling for inspiration, use the job description to help you identify the specific skills the employer is looking for.

For example, if it highlights that the perfect candidate will have excellent business analysis skills, make sure you cover this somewhere in your statement.

This could sound something like: ‘Working experience of strategic business analysis with an investigative and methodical approach to problem-solving.’

Personal statement: Dos and don’ts

How do you write a personal statement?

Starting off with the ‘who are you?’ question, always aim to include a quick introduction as the first point.

An example opening for your personal statement could be: ‘A qualified and enthusiastic X, with over Y years’ worth of experience, currently searching for a Z position to utilise my skills and take the next step in my career’.

What tense should my personal statement be written in?

Your personal statement can be written in any person or tense – as long as you maintain consistency throughout.

This means avoiding statements like:  ‘I am a recent business economics graduate. Excellent analytical and organisational skills. I am driven and self-motivated individual that always gives 100% in everything I do. Proven track record of successes’ –   at all costs.

Personal statement structure 

To write a persuasive personal statement, consider following this structure: 

The structure to adopt when writing a personal statement is: 

How long should I spend writing my personal statement?

A personal statement isn’t a one-size-fits all document.

In other words, a new personal statement should be written for each application. Although it might take some time to alter it according to each job role, your effort will make all the difference when it comes to impressing an employer.

After all, each job requires a slightly different set of skills and experience – meaning the level of focus you put on your abilities will change from application to application.

Remember: generic personal statements won’t get you anywhere – and sending off five well-written and tailored CVs has more value than sending out fifty generic ones.

Personal statement example

A recent business economics graduate with a 2:1 honours degree from the University of X, looking to secure a Graduate Commercial Analyst position or similar to utilise my current analytical skills and knowledge, and also help me to further develop these skills in a practical and fast-paced environment.

My eventual career goal is to assume responsibility for the analysis and implementation of all commercial data and actively contribute to the overall success of any business I work for.

Personal statement examples

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Personal Statements: Examples, Do's and Don'ts

Personal Statements: Examples, Do's and Don'ts

What is a personal statement?

What makes a good personal statement , how to start a personal statement , how to finish a personal statement .

Personal statement do’s

Personal statement don’ts

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Writing a personal statement for your CV

Also known as a personal profile or personal summary, a personal statement is essentially a blurb for your CV. Discover if they're really necessary, how to write one and how to make it stand out to employers

What is a personal statement?

A personal statement is a concise paragraph or summary, which details what you can bring to a job or company. It's also known as an opening statement or executive summary.

Sitting at the top of your CV, it's your opportunity to really sell yourself to employers and to highlight the relevant skills and experience you possess.

While effectively and succinctly convincing recruiters that you're a good fit for the role, a personal statement gives you the chance to show off your strengths and share your career goals.

'The personal profile is essentially a snapshot about you that should excite and entice the employer to want to pay closer attention to your CV,' explains James Corbin, head of the careers and employability service at the University of Kent. 'It's the sales pitch that highlights your best features.'

Do I need a personal statement on my CV?

Traditionally, almost all CV types include a personal statement but in recent years there has been some debate about whether you need to include one.

Some believe that personal profiles are one of the most important parts of a CV as they provide an easily accessible overview of a candidate's ability, while others feel that personal statements are a waste of valuable space and time.

This latter belief is often the case with graduate CVs as some recruiters feel that those just stepping onto the career ladder don't have enough knowledge or experience to warrant a personal statement. Because of this, a graduate's personal profile runs the risk of being bland and generic, which is why some employers believe that they are best suited to more senior professional CVs.

Fiona Stubs, careers manager at the University of Glasgow explains, 'I'm not in favour of writing a profile as it is hard to get right. Many students' profiles tend to include a list of common strengths without a context, in some cases stating things that should be a given, for example, hardworking and organised. I feel that profiles can be more helpful when you are more senior as you can be more specific about your skills, specialisms and successes.'

While your CV doesn't necessarily need a personal statement, employers spend only seconds looking at CVs. With this in mind a personal statement can give you an invaluable opportunity to make your application stand out to employers and to set yourself apart from the competition.

If you'd like to include a personal statement on your CV it might be best, as a graduate, to focus on your educational background and the career path you'd like to embrace. If you have relevant experiences use these to make your personal statement unique.

'Work with your careers or employability advisers to hone what you are writing. Start this process early as it can take more time than you expect,' adds James.

What does a personal statement include?

In terms of length, a CV personal profile should be no longer than 150 words. Aim for a few short sentences, four or five should do the job.

If you're struggling with what to write, break your personal statement down into three parts. Focus on:

Start by introducing yourself. For example, 'A recent graduate with a 2:1 in English literature from the Hillview University' or a 'Highly-skilled physiotherapist looking to progress into…'

Next, detail what you can offer the company. Ask yourself why you're suited to the particular role and cover any relevant skills or experience. If you lack practical work experience instead draw attention to your academic achievements such as contributing to university publications, which developed written communication, attention to detail and team working skills.

Conclude your personal statement by highlighting your career goals. For example, 'I am looking to start my career in the exciting world of publishing and to develop the skills learned through my university studies and internships.'

'Avoid using empty statements like 'I work well independently and as part of a team' - it's bland and tells employers nothing about what you’re capable of,' says James. 'On the other hand 'experienced event manager, who led a team to organise a charity ball for 150 people, raising £5,000 - a 20% increase on previous years' sounds dynamic and demonstrates your experience.'

It's up to you how you present this information; there is no hard and fast rule. However, personal statements are generally displayed as a single paragraph, without a title or subheading. You'll need to keep it consistent with the rest of your CV formatting, meaning that the font size and type will need to be the same throughout your document.

Also, consider the voice you'd like to use. Personal statements can be written in either the first or third person but you'll need to maintain this voice throughout - don't switch between the two.

Take a look at  how to write a CV .

How can I make it stand out to employers?

'Too many people stop sounding like themselves when they write cover letters or profiles,' says James. 'Employers aren't looking for some archaic scholar or someone who only writes in jargon, they are recruiting a real human and this is your chance to give them an insight into your experiences and personality.

Think about the connotations of the words you use - 'currently studying' implies things might change, 'trying' implies failure. The words you use have significant power, and should be chosen carefully to paint a positive and engaging picture.'

Find out more about the  top 7 CV mistakes .

CV personal statement examples

To help you get started take a look at the following CV personal profile examples.

As a recent graduate from the University of Townville, with a 2:1 honours degree in marketing, I have undertaken internships at industry-leading agencies such as Beyond Imagination and Noah Freemans. These placements have allowed me to develop sector knowledge and gain hands on experience, as well as expand transferable skills such as commercial awareness, communication and negotiation and analytical skills. My career aim is to gain a role which allows me to further my expertise and take on increased responsibility at a market-leading digital marketing agency.

I am a highly motivated 2:1 forensic science graduate from Groveshire University, looking to secure a graduate position that enables me to use and develop my analytical, attention to detail and communication skills. I have gained relevant experience in both scientific and hospital laboratories, which allowed me to build on my problem solving, concentration and team working skills. My career goal is to assume a role that enables me to analyse and interpret forensic data and to eventually move into crime scene investigation.

Remember; avoid copying and pasting ready-made examples. Instead use them as a guide to craft your own, tailored CV personal statement. Take a look at our  example CVs .

Find out more

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