Why is it important to use numbers on your resume? It’s simple. Numbers tell your potential employer where, how, and why you have succeeded. You can always make general statements. For instance, I could say “I have helped a lot of people create resumes that got them interviews and jobs.” Is that quantifiable?
No, it is not. But if I say: “Of 1,000 clients who came to me for assistance, 85% had multiple interviews in under two weeks, and 96% of my clients found jobs in under 60 days,” then that IS quantifiable, and it means something.
Because I was specific at that time, you can easily comprehend—from looking at those figures—the number of my clients who get interviews, and how many end up employed. This is the information that a job seeker needs—not something vague such as how I have “helped a lot of people.”
Quantify your information
Now you know how important it is to quantify. Vague statements mean nothing. Numbers do. So talk about hard, real numbers. How many problems did you solve on any given day? How many sales calls did you take? How long did it take you to complete a project? What was the projected budget for the project, and how much under did you come in?
You get the idea.
What if you have no numbers?
Trust me, you have numbers. You might not have sales figures, but you have other numbers. How many people did you manage? How many unhappy people did you convert into satisfied clients in any given month? There are numbers everywhere—so use them.
Sometimes, a number might even be a fraction. Say you have completed 2/3 of the course requirements for an MBA. That is a number. Then emphasize how many courses you have to complete to finish your MBA. Anything you have done—a project completed, a cost-reduction you negotiated, a customer satisfaction rating, employee retention numbers, a better employee benefits package… there are numbers in there—so use them.
Sometimes, all you have to do is look at your typical day, and you will find numbers. Anything can be quantified, and all you have to do is find out how to quantify it on your resume. So start digging—look for those numbers, and make them work for you.