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How to Add Side Projects to Resume

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The American labor market is in strife with the competition. Crafting your resume to include side projects may boost your chances of landing your dream job, apart from distinguishing you from the crowd in a highly saturated labor market. Learning how to add side projects to resume is as important as submitting your resume for immediate employment.

In addition to standing you out from the crowd, it allows you to experiment and perfect new skills, gain new industry insights and earn additional income.

Experts generally recommend adding a visible list of the most relevant side projects to highlight your core competence, experience, and expertise. It inspires confidence in your leadership experience and skills.

Are you looking for resources on how to list side projects on your resume, wondering where to put them, or confused about putting them on a resume or CV? Providence has indeed smiled on you for unlocking this treasure trove of resources. If you are ready to land your dream job, let us begin now.

Should I Mention Side Projects in My Resume?

Recruiters constantly see hundreds of resumes following similar patterns, including a list of skills, educational qualifications, and achievements. Mentioning side projects in a resume is indeed a road less traveled that generally leads to a higher chance of being recruited.

Furthermore, mentioning them showcases creativity and technology adeptness and creates a golden opportunity for prompt employment. So many fortune-billion-dollar business ideas, including Craiglist, Twitter, and Gmail, started as side projects. If you are concerned about building a personal brand that stands out from the crowd and showcases your competence across various industries, you should consider mentioning side projects in your resume.

Arbitrarily putting side projects on resumes is not only counterproductive but also connotes unprofessionalism. Just as experts advise job seekers to tailor their CVs to target roles, they are also advised to include only side projects relevant to their desired position. Resumes with irrelevant side projects suggest an unfocused jobseeker. The kind recruiters should not waste time engaging.

If you are going to mention side projects to boost your resume, you may want to do it excellently by following the tips below. Even if you are applying to a less competitive role in a novel industry, crafting your resume to include these tips sends the right message to the recruiter. It suggests organization, class, elitism, intelligence, and a capacity to deliver. CVs and resumes create the first impression in the hiring manager’s mind and determine whether you are worthy of being called for an interview.

How to List Side Projects on Resume

Listing side projects on a resume is not rocket science. The best approach is to include it in the work history area of your resume to be headed separately with fancy headings. This does not, however, suggest that they cannot be listed elsewhere, including in the achievement area.

Since recruiters generally glance through resumes and rarely spend ample time scrutinizing them. Every key information must be visible to get the attention they deserve. No matter how comprehensive they are, ensure that they are sectionalized and well arranged.

The best side projects feature essential details, including designation at the previous company where it was performed, project details, contributions, and positive results. Follow these simple, practical side project listing steps for the best result.

  1. List essential skills to highlight;
  2. Decide important side projects to include;
  3. Decide where to put the side projects on your resume;
  4. Include links.

List Essential Skills to Highlight

Essential skills to highlight depending on the job posting. Most job postings contain the required skillset and qualifications an applicant must possess. List only skills and qualifications that align with the job posting and vacant role on your resume. Listing important skills gives you clarity of thought to determine the side project that best demonstrates the desired skills.

Decide Important Side Projects to Include

Deciding the important project included is simple if you have listed and highlighted your possessed essential skills that align with the job requirement. Begin by making a list of all completed side projects and streamline them to the relevant role, industry, and position you are applying for. You should include all completed side projects that demonstrate the possession and utilization of those skills the recruiters want to be transferred to the new role.

Decide Where to Put the Side Projects on Your Resume

Having successfully answered the question, should I mention side projects in my resume? The next question is where to put them on the resume. They are typically included in a separate section under the job description and education section.

  • Separate Section

A good way to start is to include a separate project section. The hiring manager will most likely scan through your resume section by section. Creating a separate section ensures that he won’t miss out on your side projects. This may also be particularly necessary if you have several to list.

  • Job Description

Resumes and CVs usually contain a job description of previous employment. Including side projects under each job description is fantastic and is almost guaranteed to churn out the desired positive result. It shows you are result-oriented while allowing you to display your accomplishments in previous employment.

  • Education Section

You may want to rethink if you think the education section should strictly contain your educational affiliations and certificates. It is professional and practical to list side projects under the education section. The best approach to mentioning them under this section is to list them with the degree and university. Listing them under the education section is most preferred if they are academically related, such as the ones undergone during a training course.

Include links

The principal purpose of resumes and CVs is to highlight your skillset, expertise, educational qualifications, and professional affiliations to earn an interview invitation. Including links to your online portfolio, blogs, and websites containing your side projects allow the hiring manager to have a detailed view of them. It gives him more insights and depth into the skills, experience, and expertise you are transferring to the new role.

Ensure the links are not broken; the portfolio is up-to-date and relevant to the new role. Resist the temptation to overwhelm the hiring manager with needless data. Focus on the ones that best present a mastery of the required skills for the future role.

Examples

Follow this example to list under a separate section:

[Project A name], [Company name], [Date], [Description and Role]

Examples

Here is how to list side projects under the job description if you prefer:

[WORK EXPERIENCE]

[Job Role/Title], [Company], [Job description], [Dates]

[Projects]

[Projects A description and key role]

Examples

Best suited for side projects handled in the course of acquiring an educational qualification. Here is how to include them under the education section:

[EDUCATION]

[Higher Institution] [City and state] [Qualification]

[Projects]

[Project A] [Company] [Date] [Description and Role]

Conclusions

Perfecting your resume gives you an edge, an added advantage over competitors with a similar skill set and competence. It is expedient to do it well by following these proven tips, including listing them under a separate heading, educational qualification, and work experience.

Being inexperienced or lacking a specific skill from previous employments should not discourage you from including side projects, except if you are applying for a non-competitive role. Experts recommend including unrelated ones if they highlight skills in areas that may encourage the hiring manager to offer you another role or consider you for the vacant position.

FAQ

How do I put side business on my resume?

Experts recommend putting side business on resumes, provided that they highlight required skills in the job description. You should put them in the skills section of your resume while highlighting expertise, talent, and knowledge. Alternatively, you can include them under the work experience section.

This same answer will suffice for how to put the failed startup on resume. The bottom line is highlighting your skills and expertise on the side of business and startup.

Are side projects important on a resume?

Yes, they are essential on resumes and CVs. They highlight skills, suggest that an applicant is goal-oriented, and distinguish and stand them out from the competition.

Additional resources

Check out our special resources on resumes with entrepreneurial experience for a career transitioning from an entrepreneur to an employee. We also have additional resources on how to put edX on resume, and resume writing services reviews for a seamless resume crafting experience.

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