The way to Write an Aviation Resume


Whether or not you’re simply beginning out within the trade or attempting to land that dream job, having a clear, well-organized, and easy-to-read resume is crucially necessary. 

Your resume is usually the very first impression {that a} potential employer (or admissions officer or scholarship committee) will get of you, and it’s price placing within the effort and time to ensure their first impression is of an organized, clever, and procedure-detail-oriented individual. 

Even should you’ve already created a resume or CV (“curriculum vitae”) in a non-aviation subject, there are some essential variations to pilot resumes that it’s best to find out about.

Under is an instance of a typical aviation resume—on this case, mine. 

1. Total Format

In contrast to many different industries, the single-page resume is commonplace in aviation. It will affect lots of your selections and will require you to get artistic with format, margins, font, and line spacing. Remember that a resume doesn’t want to inform all the pieces about you, simply the elements which might be most necessary to the employer or group you might be focusing on. The objective is to indicate sufficient data to convey your strengths, however not a lot that the web page is cluttered and tough to learn. It needs to be visually pleasing and balanced from high to backside and left to proper. 

You must use one or two trendy, readable fonts (I favor Avenir Subsequent; different widespread fonts are Helvetica Neue, Tahoma, Trebuchet MS, and Verdana). 

Many industries, significantly these within the artistic fields, have gone to extra trendy resume codecs incorporating colour, pictures, a number of columns, introductory paragraphs, and lists of sentimental and technical expertise or descriptive key phrases. Nevertheless, I’d argue that almost all aviation employers worth a conservative mindset over creativity, and your resume ought to mirror that.

2. Header

Your title needs to be distinguished and sufficiently separated from the remainder of the textual content. This can be a good place to make use of a chic font considerably totally different from the physique of your resume (Right here I used Didot; Garamond is one other good alternative). Whether or not you utilize your center title, center preliminary, or solely first and final title is a matter of style and largely is determined by how wordily your dad and mom named you, however it’s best to attempt to match what you place in your utility and canopy letter. I favor to place my contact data within the header; some folks put it in a footer.

3. Goal

Many non-aviation fields have ditched the target in favor of an govt abstract, however for us it’s nonetheless fairly commonplace. You must customise your whole resume for each job and employer/group you goal, however significantly this part. Ensure you get the job title and, particularly, the potential employer’s title precisely appropriate! There’s no surer strategy to the underside of the pile at Delta Air Traces than claiming you need to work for “Delta Airways.”

4. Schooling

This may be positioned earlier than or after the flying-specific sections. I’d argue that in case you have a four-year diploma or increased and your potential employer is understood to worth schooling, this part ought to come first. For those who don’t have a level or whether it is superfluous to the job you might be making use of for, you may checklist schooling after work expertise. 

At a minimal, it’s best to embrace the very best degree of schooling accomplished, with establishment title and placement, course of research, commencement date, and honors and/or GPA (if above 3.0). Any additional element is determined by the necessities of the job and the way a lot area it’s a must to fill. For instance, in case you are simply beginning out and solely have just a few FAA certificates, little flight time, and a sparse work historical past, then you definately may checklist each highschool and faculty. For those who accomplished a flight coaching program at a non-collegiate aviation academy, that might be applicable to checklist right here. When you have performed skilled improvement applications exterior of aviation (an IT certification, for instance), checklist them in case you have the area or in case your schooling part is in any other case lackluster. When you have a number of entries, checklist them in reverse chronological order. 

When you have any navy service, I’d put that part both simply after schooling or simply earlier than work expertise, whichever comes first in your resume. One line itemizing the navy department and dates of service is enough; additionally, you will checklist particular navy jobs and models underneath work expertise.”

5. Pilot Certificates and Rankings

This and the subsequent two sections are the meat of your resume. At a minimal, checklist the pilot certificates (with class, class, and sort scores) and medical certificates required for the job you might be making use of for. On this case, the place I’m making use of to World Domination Airways, I might get rid of the third and fourth traces if I had been quick on area; they don’t essentially care about my Industrial Glider ranking or CFII. However in case you have the area, put each certificates and ranking you’ve earned; they paint the entire image of a well-rounded pilot. Attempt to use the verbiage truly printed in your certificates, in case you have room. Don’t embrace medical waivers or limitations. Embrace minor certificates (e.g. FCC Restricted Radiotelephone Operators Allow) provided that that you must fill area or if they’re explicitly required to your focused job.”

6. Flight Time

This needs to be laid out as a desk, custom-made to the necessities of the focused job; too many fields, and the center of your resume can be a cluttered mess. Many functions have very detailed flight time grids that can drive you nuts (“Solo Night time Cross-Nation”); there isn’t any cause to get that granular in your resume as properly. If I had been pressed for area, World Domination Airways solely actually cares about complete time, turbine, and turbine PIC (although heavy time may properly catch their eye).

7. Employment Historical past

That is the place many resumes get bloated. You don’t must put each job you’ve ever held; that’s what functions are for. On this case I listed “Airline Work Expertise” as a result of I had the area for 3 airways and even a long-ago internship. Earlier in my profession, I titled it “Aviation Work Expertise” and included flight colleges and Half 135 outfits, and earlier than that it was simply “Work Expertise,” operating all the way in which again to my highschool job at a lumberyard. If pressed for area, name it “Latest Work Expertise” and solely checklist your current place and most up-to-date earlier job.

For every entry, checklist firm title and placement, dates of employment, and some descriptive bullet factors (for flying jobs: place, plane flown, kind of operation). In gross sales and artistic fields, it’s widespread to make use of “energy verbs” to brag about all the nice stuff you’ve performed. Not vital right here; the presumption is that each flight had a profitable end result. Entries needs to be in reverse chronological order.”

8. Miscellaneous 

Area dependent, there are a number of classes you’ll be able to add. Some fashionable ones are:

  • Different expertise: Tailor-made to the employer. I occur to know that World Domination Airways likes their pilots to be tech savvy, so I listed my candy cyber expertise right here. 
  • Volunteer work: Surprisingly necessary at some employers (Dixie Air Service for one), much less so for others. Know your focused employer.
  • Languages: Watch out about overstating your degree of fluency, somebody on the interview will little question communicate it as their first language.
  • Awards: Group recognition could make you stand out from the group. 
  • Actions/hobbies: I’d be very cautious about this one, until you’re concerned in one thing difficult and attention-grabbing that makes you stand out however doesn’t make you sound like a wild card (“Grasp Glassblower” I’d placed on an airline resume, “Regional champion BASE jumper” not a lot).
  • Availability: Personally, I’ve at all times loved promoting my willingness to screw over my present employer. Your mileage might range.

9. Enhancing and Distribution

I can not stress this sufficient: pay completely microscopic consideration to element, and get a number of units of eyeballs in your resume earlier than you give it to any employer you’re attempting to woo. Don’t simply ship it to your aviation mates, ship it to your literate mates. Spelling, grammar, and punctuation should be excellent, and elegance and formatting should be constant. Examine your resume in different settings: not simply in your phrase processor, but additionally in PDF format and on plain printer paper and good resume paper. The above instance has a number of minor errors I didn’t catch till I’d printed it (I left them as easter eggs). 

When submitting your resume on-line (whether or not by way of electronic mail or hooked up to an utility), the very best format is PDF, as a result of totally different variations of phrase processors generally render DOC or DOCX recordsdata in another way. Phrase, Pages, and most different phrase processors have the flexibility to export in PDF.

There are nonetheless fairly just a few conditions that decision for an old style paper resume: job gala’s and conventions, interviews, hitting the road on a chilly name, or for the actually old fashioned potential employer, snail mail. 

Do your self a favor and get some actually nice-looking, great-feeling resume paper. I personally like 32 lb. 100% cotton in a linen end. White is a protected colour alternative; almond or ivory are about as loopy as I’d get for an aviation resume. Good paper runs $20-30 for 100 sheets; FedEx Workplace will promote you smaller portions, and may print copies should you don’t have a high-quality printer.


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