Whether you’re a veteran software developer with experience using the Python programming language, or a new grad looking for work in a Python environment, you will need to write a Python resume if you want to land a new job.
Python is a popular and practical language, with many different applications throughout the tech industry. Software companies are always looking for Python developers, so there will always be roles available to you if you have experience building apps or manipulating data with Python.
However, because Python skills are so desirable, any open position for a Python developer will be competitive. If you want to land the interview, you will need a great Python resume. Your resume has to show that you have the skills and experience to write great Python code, even if you haven’t worked as a Python developer before.
This guide will teach how to write a great Python resume, including:
Python is a programming language popular throughout the software industry. It can be used for many important tasks, including building websites and applications, automating software processes, analyzing and visualizing data, and testing software.
Python is easy to learn relative to many other programming languages, so it is popular among professional software developers, amateurs, and hobbyists alike.
A Python resume is a resume that showcases skills and experience using Python.
As Python is a general-purpose scripting language with many different uses, your Python experience will likely be specialized for specific tasks. You might be a web developer, a machine learning specialist, or a data researcher. Your Python resume should make it clear exactly what your specialties are, and how you have used Python to accomplish your goals.
This will require writing great work experience, showcasing your Python skills, and highlighting key accomplishments from your career.
No matter what your experience is, there are several resume sections your Python resume will need. These sections include:
The first item on your resume should be your contact information. It’s important to make sure any employer that reads your resume knows exactly how to reach out to you. At or near the top of your resume, include your:
If you have an online profile you would like to link to, such as your LinkedIn or Github profile, you can also include it in your contact information section. Career-focused online profiles or portfolios can be an important asset to your resume, but make sure that any account you link to is completely appropriate. Don’t include a link to your Twitter account, for example, if you use it to discuss anything besides your industry.
Your resume summary is your introduction to a hiring manager. It is where you can quickly, in only a few sentences or bullet points, provide a description of your skills, experience, and a few key achievements. Your Summary section should be near the top of your resume, so it is what hiring managers will read first.
This section should be brief, but it will be enough to encourage the hiring manager to keep reading. If you can select the right skills and achievements to highlight, you can demonstrate to employers that your application is worth taking seriously and they will be more likely to read the rest of your resume.
Your Work Experience section is the largest and most important part of your resume. This section is where you will list all of your previous jobs, with a job description that highlights your most impressive skills and achievements. If an employer is interested in your application, this is the section they will be most interested in, so it’s important to make sure it is impressive.
In your Work Experience section, list your previous positions in reverse-chronological order, beginning with your most recent position and working backwards. For each job, include the:
Make sure every job description is effective. A resume is, at the end of the day, a sales document, and this is where you can sell yourself. To do this, you can’t rely on a boring list of your duties in each role. Instead, highlight important accomplishments that clearly demonstrate your abilities. Specific examples of the projects you worked on and the things you achieved will be more impressive than vaguely describing your role.
For example, “Designed and implemented automated software testing suite using Python” will be more impressive than “Responsible for testing software.”
A great way to find clear examples of your achievements is to use numbers wherever possible. Measurable examples of your success, like department size, client satisfaction scores, and revenue, all look great on a resume. Specific numbers show that you are a data-driven worker who keeps track of your performance, which is a great asset in a Python developer.
To make sure your work experience is impressive, use action words as much as possible. Words like implemented, designed, and spearheaded all imply leadership and initiative. If you can use strong verbs like these to describe your work history, employers will see you as a hard working employee with the ability to lead.
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For most job-seekers, the Education section does not need to be long. You should list any degrees or certificates that are relevant to your career, but detailed descriptions aren’t needed. In each item, include the:
If you have been working for a few years, this is all that is needed.
If you are a student or recent graduate without much work experience, however, you may need to use your Education section to fill out your resume. If this is the case, you can include more information about your degree, such as GPA (if it’s high), areas of study, or important projects.
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As software development is a competitive industry, your Skills section is an important part of your resume. You need to make sure potential employers know exactly what your skills are, what tools you have experience using, and what you are capable of. A clear list of your most important and most relevant skills is the best place for a potential employer to figure out what you can do.
For a quick and efficient Skills section, present your skills in a simple bulleted list. Make sure your most relevant skills, like Python, are right at the top of the list where the hiring manager is sure to see them. This will allow anyone reading your resume to quickly skim the list and see what you can do.
If you would like to draw more attention to your Skills section, create a heading for each skill area and add a brief description of each skill below. This will allow you to offer examples of how you have used each skill throughout your career.
While the sections above are enough for many resumes, you may have some other qualifications that you want to showcase that don’t quite fit. If this is the case, you can add more sections to your Python resume to make sure it doesn’t leave out any key details. Additional sections can include:
As a Python developer, your portfolio is one of your most important assets. You should have a selection of apps, websites, or other projects that you have contributed to that demonstrate your abilities working with Python. A Projects section of your resume with links or descriptions of your previous projects can be a great way to impress employers.
Networking is key to a successful career, and demonstrating that you have a healthy network can improve your resume. If you belong to any professional groups or clubs, you can note that you are a member in a Memberships section.
Some classes or licenses don’t fit into an Education section. If you have some credentials that you would like to show, like a management certification or completion of a programming workshop, you may want to add a Certifications section.
If you have any volunteer positions that you would like to include on your resume, you may want to list them in a Volunteering Experience section. Volunteer roles can be a great asset to your resume, especially if you don’t have much work experience. Even if it’s something as simple as building a website for a local charity, volunteering experience shows that you are active in your community and have interests outside of work.
Once all the sections of your Python resume are ready, there are a few ways you can optimize it to ensure it lands an interview. These include:
Every time you apply for a job, it’s important to customize your resume to suit the specific role. A generalized resume that you use for every application likely won’t be specific enough to catch a hiring manager’s eye.
When writing a job application, make sure to tailor your resume to suit the job description and company culture. Try to copy the language of the job posting to show that you have the right skills and the right attitude to excel at that exact role.
Many companies use an Applicant Tracking System, or ATS, to manage the hiring process. An ATS is a type of software that reads candidate resumes and passes the best ones along to the hiring managers. If you want to land an interview, your resume has to beat the ATS.
To do this, use an ATS template. Because the ATS has to parse your resume using software, it can stumble on confusing design elements like tables, charts, and text boxes. If you want to make sure the ATS can read your resume, you will need a template optimized for ATS applications. An ATS-friendly resume template has the right formatting to get through an applicant tracking system.
Your resume does not need to be more than one page long. If you absolutely can’t fit the necessary experience onto one page, you can use a two-page resume. If you do, however, make sure you can fill both pages entirely. A one-point-five page resume will look worse than a one-page or two-page resume.
Community Success Manager & CV Writing Expert
Ben is a writer, customer success manager and CV writing expert with over 5 years of experience helping job-seekers create their best careers. He believes in the importance of a great resume summary and the power of coffee.
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