How to Show Skill Levels on a Resume (Examples)

How can you show skill levels on a resume? Preparing to apply for a work opportunity necessitates gathering the required documentation and tailoring it to the role in question. You may improve your employability and build interest in your application by knowing how to include skill level into your resume. This will urge an employer to take a deeper look at your unique qualifications.

skill levels

What are skill levels?

A person's skill level is a phrase that may be used to describe their understanding of a subject. To indicate your degree of expertise with a certain talent, words like novice, intermediate, competent, or expert can be given to your personal and professional characteristics.

How can they benefit a resume?

By putting skill level on your resume, you may give your skill section a more organized order and, as a result, give the credentials you choose to include on your resume more significance.

skill levels

How are skill levels determined?

An employee's skill level determines how successfully he or she performs at work. Employee development is frequently contingent on achieving a certain degree of work expertise. Employees are allocated skill levels during employee training to grade their competency at a certain task.

skill levels

Trainee, Novice, Proficient, and Expert are examples of skill levels. Within those areas, there are sub-categories ranging from 10 to 1, with 10 being the least skilled and 1 being the most proficient. As a result, it is conceivable for a Level 1 Novice to be promoted to a Level 10 Proficient.

skill levels

Novice

  • Has just rudimentary or textbook knowledge that isn't linked to practice.
  • Requires constant monitoring or guiding.
  • Has little or no understanding of how to cope with ambiguity.
  • When it comes to behaviors, he has a tendency to look at them in isolation.

Advanced Beginner

  • Has basic knowledge of key aspects of the practice.
  • Straightforward tasks are likely to be done to an acceptable standard.
  • Is able to achieve some steps using own judgment, but needs supervision for the overall task.
  • Appreciates complex situations, but is only able to achieve partial resolution.
  • Sees actions as a series of steps.

Competent

  • Has good working and background knowledge of area of practice.
  • Results can be achieved for open tasks, though may lack refinement.
  • Is able to achieve most tasks using own judgement.
  • Copes with complex situations through deliberate analysis and planning.
  • Sees actions at least partly in terms of longer-term goals.

skill levels

Proficient

  • Depth of understanding of discipline and area of practice.
  • Fully acceptable standard achieved routinely, results are also achieved for open tasks.
  • Able to take full responsibility for own work (and that of others where applicable).
  • Deals with complex situations holistically, confident decision-making.
  • Sees the overall picture and how individual actions fit within it.

Expert

  • Authoritative knowledge of discipline and deep tacit understanding across area of practice.
  • Excellence achieved with relative ease.
  • Able to take responsibility for going beyond existing standards and creating own interpretations.
  • Holistic grasp of complex situations, moves between intuitive and analytical approaches with ease.
  • Sees overall picture and alternative approaches, has vision of what may be possible.

How to include skill levels on your resume

When arranging your skills section and degrees of expertise, there are a number of variables to consider.

skill levels

Use a template

Use a template to assist you.

Utilize a resume template to design elements to create an aesthetically attractive skill section, and there may be visuals or charts you can include to illustrate your degree of proficiency with a particular ability if you choose a template for your resume.

List most experienced skills, first

First, make a list of the talents you have the greatest expertise in.

Consider putting the abilities in which you consider yourself an expert ahead of the ones in which you consider yourself proficient or a novice. This might assist an employer focus on your most valuable abilities before skimming through the ones you don't have much expertise with.

List technical skills

Prioritize your technical abilities over your interpersonal abilities.

Regardless of how you structure your talents and skill levels, the technical (hard) skills should always come first, followed by interpersonal (soft) skills. This is significant because it allows employers to view job-related abilities in order of competency as the first items they see. You can include talents that are directly connected to your personality and work ethic after you've stated the job-specific skills you have to offer.

Include expert and proficient skills only

Expert and competent abilities should be included more than novice skills.

Because presenting oneself as an expert in everything may not appear practical to employers, there should be a balance of talents you believe to be an expert or skilled in. However, you should make sure that the number of expert and competent talents you provide in your resume's skill section outnumbers the number of basic or beginner-level (novice) skills you list.

Choose skills for the job/job description

Choose talents that are appropriate for the job.

Before making a list of your talents and their degree of expertise, go over the job description. Consider which of the desirable applicant characteristics and credentials you can include into your own skill area. Take into consideration any reference of the degree of experience required for a given job responsibility, and reflect this in the skill level you attribute to a skill in your resume.

Use white space

Make use of horizontal space.

Working horizontally across the page rather than vertically might help you find the ideal method to fill in vacant areas on your resume. To conserve space and optimize your skill section, you may organize your skills and level of experience using columns of threes or fives that are put side by side instead of beneath one another.

How to demonstrate skill levels on a resume

Here's how to put skill levels on your resume.

Use colors to display the skill level (example)

Consider utilizing color to create a unique strategy that attracts attention to your CV while also displaying your degree of competence. You should provide a key to show which hue corresponds to which degree of experience.

Green: Microsoft Office, Email Marketing, SEM, SEO

Yellow: ROI, Planning, Strategy

Orange: Public speaking

skill levels

Place skills on a skill level category (example)

List your abilities in experience-based categories to emphasize your ability level. Employers will be able to see the areas you claim to be an expert, competent, or novice in.

Expert: SEO, SEM, Direct Marketing, PPC lead generation

Proficient: Google Analytics, Database Management

Novice: Public Speaking

Language and writing skills can be used in these categories, too.

Use visuals to help

Using graphics and other design aspects to identify a talent as expert, competent intermediate, or novice on your resume might be a unique approach to display your degree of ability for a certain skill.

Separate hard and soft skills (example)

By classifying your hard and soft skills and stating your experience level to the right of each skill, you may better identify your degrees of expertise. Hard skills are technical abilities that can be immediately applied to the work at hand. Soft skills are interpersonal abilities that represent personal characteristics that can help you perform successfully in work.

Technical skills: SEO marketing, direct mail marketing, Google Analytics

Soft skills: Interpersonal skills, detail-oriented, task delegation

Want to know what the best skills for your resume are?

skill levels

Favorite Resources

Our favorite resources are included below.

Job interview resources

Resume and cover letter resources

Job search resources

free interview question and answer full guide

Interview Question and Answer Guide (PDF)

Get our full interview preparation guide. Complete with common interview questions and example answers. Free. No email required.

Grab the PDF
author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW), NCDA Certified Career Counselor (CCC), and general career expert. Patrick has completed the NACE Coaching Certification Program (CCP). And has been published as a career expert on Forbes, Glassdoor, American Express, Reader's Digest, LiveCareer, Zety, Yahoo, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, SHRM.org, Process.st, FairyGodBoss, HRCI.org, St. Edwards University, NC State University, IBTimes.com, Thrive Global, TMCnet.com, Work It Daily, Workology, Career Guide, MyPerfectResume, College Career Life, The HR Digest, WorkWise, Career Cast, Elite Staffing, Women in HR, All About Careers, Upstart HR, The Street, Monster, The Ladders, Introvert Whisperer, and many more. Find him on LinkedIn.

Share

Help us by spreading the word