Social workers are an important part of community management for many people with issues. Whether these people have been convicted of a crime, have mental health issues, or are struggling with health conditions, a social worker can provide the interpersonal support necessary to help them with their well-being. If you’re interested in applying to be a licensed clinical social worker, here’s what you need to know about using social worker resume samples to get there.
A social worker resume needs to show recruiters that you’re good at managing a caseload. Many social workers have dozens of clients to cover at any given time, and that means the perfect resume should show that you have the skills, experience and knowledge necessary to manage all of those people at the same time. A social worker job is no place for someone who has a difficult time connecting with people.
To an extent, any social worker resume is going to shift slightly depending on the resume format that you choose for your resume. Because your job search is going to rely so heavily on skills and experience, the chronological resume format is often the best one for showing off a professional resume. However, those with less experience may benefit from the functional resume format or the resume format. Regardless of the format you choose, you’ll still include the following sections on your social work resume.
The header goes at the very top of the resume, typically considered one of the resume design elements. This header includes your contact information with your phone number, location, email address and job networking profile links, like your LinkedIn profile.
The next section is your resume summary or resume objective. This is a 2-3 sentence paragraph at the very top of the resume. In a resume summary, you will include your most important achievements and skills to give a hiring manager a snapshot of who you are and what you’re like. A resume objective is reserved for those who have very little work experience. In this case, you would state your overall career goals.
You’ll typically list quite a few social work skills in your skills section. When you’re focused on social work resume writing, many skills can be helpful. Here are a few bullet points to consider:
Note that this skills list includes both hard skills and soft skills. In such a human-focused field like social work, it’s critically important that you’re able to do your job and connect with the people that you’ll likely see every day.
Your work experience section should include all professional experience in this field in the past 10 years. If you have more than 10 years of experience, it’s recommended that you put that experience on your LinkedIn so as not to clutter your resume. In your resume, you can include all social work that you’ve done, including positions as a school social worker. And, if you have any related volunteer experience or completed an internship, you can include that information here as well. Organize all your experience in reverse-chronological order, with the most recent and most relevant job first.
Most social workers get their Master of Social Work (MSW) to practice. The education section is where you can put this information. You can also include any certifications that you hold and any professional affiliations you might have. This may include the Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) certification, as well as the National Association of Social Workers (NASW).
A cover letter is an important part of any job application, including a social worker application. A cover letter allows you to talk directly to a hiring manager, which you don’t get to do in your resume. And you can ask directly for the job interview. If you’re not confident in your abilities to write a cover letter, you can use the cover letter builder from ResumeNerd to do it for you.
A social worker resume without a lot of experience will typically lean quite heavily on your skills. However, remember that you probably do have experience. You just might not have the type of experience that you usually think of. You’ll usually have academic and often internship experience, which you can add to your resume.
It’s never a good idea to use the same resume to apply to more than one job. When applying to multiple jobs it is important to look at the social work job description to see what skills it is looking for. That way, you can target your resume toward a specific job position.