Accomplishments demonstrate your skills and experience. It’s one thing to claim you can do something — it’s another to prove you’ve done it.
When collecting accomplishments for a job search, consider the key areas of competency required for success in the position you are seeking. What are the key components of your job? You should be able to identify accomplishments directly related to this expertise.
To come up with accomplishments, take a look at your past performance reviews and think about any awards or recognition you’ve received.
The most important part of the accomplishment is outlining your results. To be most effective, however, you also need to provide context for your accomplishment. There are several different formats to do this.
Here are three common formats: STAR, CAR, and PAR.
An example of a STAR statement would be:
- Recruited to revitalize an underperforming sales territory characterized by significant account attrition. (Situation)
- Tasked with reacquiring accounts that had left the company within the last six months. (Task)
- Developed contact list for lapsed accounts and initiated contact with decision-makers at each company. (Action) Reacquired 22% of former customers, resulting in $872,000 in revenue.
An example of a CAR statement is:
- Manufacturing plant recently had its third accident, leading to a line shutdown. (Challenge)
- Updated internal safety plan and instituted a new training program for production employees to reduce accidents and injuries. (Action)
- The plant has been accident-free for the past nine months — the longest it has been without accidents in plant history. (Result)
A sample PAR statement would be:
- Nursing home employee morale was at an all-time low, and long-time employees were leaving in droves. (Problem)
- Identified that new scheduling system was not well received by either new hires or long-time employees, resulting in significant dissatisfaction with employee schedules. Instituted new “employee choice” schedule system that increased employee cooperation in determining ideal staffing schedule and improved employee satisfaction as a result. (Action)
- Reduced turnover by 15%, saving more than $12,500 in hiring and training costs in the first three months after implementing the new system. (Result)
Quantifying your accomplishments also helps you stand out from others who do the work you do — whether you’re using the information for a raise or promotion request, or when seeking a new job opportunity.