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How—and When—to Include Projects on Your Resume (Plus Examples!)

By | Regina Borsellino |

If you’ve completed a project you’re especially proud of, it’s natural to want to show it off on your resume—and it might even help you land your next job. Projects that potentially belong on your resume can come from your past jobs, paid and unpaid side ventures, and—if you’re a recent grad—your academic coursework.

Read on to see why, when, and how you should put projects on your resume.

Why You Should List Projects on a Resume

Like everything else on your resume, projects can help highlight experiences that qualify you for your next job. You may have used skills—hard or soft—in a certain project that are key for the role you want. And including a successful project is a great way to tie those skills directly to results, which employers want to see on every resume.

When You Should List Projects on Your Resume

Adding projects to your resume “can be a great way to highlight experience outside of your daily role, enhance a recent grad resume, or bridge the gap from what you’re doing to what you want to do” if you’re looking to change or pivot careers, says Muse career coach Tara Goodfellow, owner of Athena Consultants.

Projects are an especially helpful addition to your resume when your experience section doesn’t already show that you have the background you need to get the job you want next, which is most common for two groups of job seekers:

  • Recent graduates: Entry-level candidates by definition lack professional experience. But if you just finished college, a big project—whether you did it for a class, an honors or capstone program, an internship, or your own research—can show that you have a lot of valuable workplace skills such as leadership, collaboration, presentation, and public speaking, Goodfellow says. After your first-full time role, Goodfellow recommends removing school projects from your resume.
  • Career changers or pivoters: When you’re looking to switch or pivot your career, you want to show any experience you have that relates to the role, field, or industry you want to go into. This might mean highlighting projects you did within a current or past job or adding a volunteer, side, or freelance project to your resume. What matters is that your project helps prove to employers you have relevant experience for the job you’re hoping to land.

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