Entry-level resume objective examples are outdated—use a career summary instead

Resume objectives used to be as common on resumes as AOL email addresses. Now the focus is on using a career summary to help with your entry-level job search.

Entry-level resume objective examples are outdated—use a career summary instead

A career summary is more practical than a resume objective.

Trends are common in fashion, music, food, and, yes, even resumes. Case in point: Resume objectives are no longer considered requirements for resumes—the career summary is far more common nowadays and is critical to include when you’re applying for entry-level jobs and other full-time jobs. There are some similarities between the two, which we’ll talk about, but the ultimate goal of both is to quickly pitch yourself to a hiring manager.

Historically, entry-level objectives explained to a hiring manager what your ultimate goal was in your job search. Therefore, it was especially necessary to include resume objectives when job seekers were changing industries or targeting specific jobs or positions. (Entry-level job seekers would include a resume objective, regardless.)

A career summary, however, is more practical in that it tells a hiring manager about your professional qualifications and background. This can be especially difficult to write because you likely don’t have loads of work experience, but you do want to solidify the fact that you know the type of career you’re looking for and the value you’d bring to a company.

A good entry-level resume objective was practical and straight to the point, and so too is a good career summary (also known as a resume summary). Here’s where one significant change lies: If you were open to being hired for any position, you could leave off a resume objective. But nowadays, every resume—even entry-level ones—should have a career summary.

Tips for writing a great entry-level summary

A resume’s career objective would often point out the obvious. In Monster's LGBTQ Pride and Work panel, Jarvis Sam, senior director of diversity recruiting, global sourcing, and talent experience at Nike, said, "Particularly for early-career professionals, I will often see real estate used on your resume around an objective statement something a little like 'to secure a role as a software engineer at Nike.' And I'm like, well, you applied for that job, so I kind of gathered that piece already." A career summary doesn’t waste space like that.

In fact, although a career summary is about your experience, what you’re really doing is showing a company how your skills can be of use in their business. So, in reality, it’s less about you and more about them. (A resume objective was the opposite.) "Use a couple of sentences, or perhaps even a paragraph, to reflect to the recruiter how your background and experience is actually aligned to the values or maximums of the company," Sam says, "and what receiving that role would actually mean in terms of your value add or value creation that you would provide to the company."

To write an effective career summary, you need to research the company to which you’re applying and include specific language that references their mission and/or the position itself. When you tailor your resume to the job posting, you’re more likely to get a call for an interview.

Resume objective examples and corresponding career summaries for entry-level job seekers

Once you’ve determined that including an objective will benefit your resume, here are some entry-level resume objective examples you may want to consider. Let’s say you’re applying to graphic design jobs at a popular company:

World-class design firm Company A is looking to hire an entry-level designer. Candidate must be passionate about design trends, be comfortable with Color Software Program, a creative problem solver, and eager to pitch in on multiple projects in our collaborative work environment.

Objective: To build a long-term career in graphic design with opportunities for career growth.
Summary: As a lead designer of State University’s student newspaper, I look forward to staying on the cutting-edge of design trends as I progress throughout my career.

Objective: To enhance my educational and professional skills in a stable and dynamic workplace.
Summary: I welcome the chance to advance my formidable knowledge of Color Software Program even further at Company A, which is renowned for exceptional design.

Objective: To solve problems in a creative and effective manner in a challenging position.
Summary: I enjoy creative problem solving and getting exposure on multiple projects, and I would excel in the collaborative environment on which your company prides itself.

Objective: To obtain employment with a company that offers a positive atmosphere to learn and implement new skills and technologies for the betterment of the organization.
Summary: I’m eager to join the collaborative work environment at Company A and learn everything I can about the latest in design and technology. As a fast learner and team player, I would thrive here.

Objective: To obtain an entry-level graphic design position at a respected organization and utilize the educational qualifications I’ve obtained at State University.
Summary: A job at Company A is my ultimate career goal, and I believe working at such cutting-edge design firm will inspire me to enhance my skills and collaborate within a positive atmosphere.

Objective: To bring my strong sense of dedication, motivation, and responsibility to Company A, and to utilize my design qualifications obtained through State University.
Summary: In addition to my design qualifications obtained through State University, I will bring a strong sense of dedication, motivation, and responsibility to Company A, which is renowned for cutting-edge design and a collaborative work atmosphere.

Objective: To obtain an entry-level position as a junior designer that will allow me to utilize the skills gained at State University and build a long-term career in design.
Summary: The Color Software Program skills I gained at State University would be of great value to your cutting-edge design projects. As an entry-level designer, I look forward to helping Company A continue to dominate the design industry.

Get an objective review

Writing an eye-catching career summary can be difficult for entry-level job seekers, but highlighting your educational achievements, skills relevant to the position, and positive attitude can help your resume stand out from the crowd. Want to make sure you're on the right track? Get a free resume evaluation today from the experts at Monster's Resume Writing Service. You'll get detailed feedback in two business days, including a review of your resume's appearance and content, and a prediction of a recruiter's first impression. Start off your career strong!