We have looked at a focused form of a resume with the mini-resume.  However, we tend to have a lot of excess in our resume as our career goes on.  This excess may be due to a large number of projects, employers, or both.  It may also come from older skills becoming useless in the modern-day.  A focused resume tackles those struggles.

The Focused Resume

We have looked at a mini-resume that is a marketing flyer for our experience.  The focused resume is similar while being all-inclusive as well.  In this document, we still list all of our skills and experience.  However, we limit the focus and wording to paint a picture of a skill subset.

For example, a developer might need a C# and a Java focused resume.  Someone focused on QA might have an automation targeted resume and one on test creation.  We might want to split out our experience to front-end and back-end or design and implementation.  The possibilities are only limited by the categories of jobs you might pursue.

Full and Sparse In One Document

One way to create this form of resume is to have one-line entries for some jobs or projects while providing more details for others.  This obstacle is something we saw with substantial resumes in general.  We want to avoid getting deep in the weeds for the experience that does not relate to the current role.  Our database skills and work may be impressive.  However, that can muddy the waters when we apply to be a development manager.  That is the problem we are trying to solve in this case.  We want to present a focused story (and resume) that shows how our career has led us to this point.

Not an Origin Story

While we want to show how our career has led us here, we can keep it concise.  There is no need to show all of the little events that brought us here.  Stick to the main thread of work related to this new job you are applying for.  Remember, the goal is to provide a clear story pointed at this new job.  If you add too many ancillary details, it can distract from that goal.

Episode Challenge: Create a focused resume (a new copy of your current resume) for your next area of focus.

Read more about advancing your career.


Rob Broadhead

Rob is a founder of, and frequent contributor to, Develpreneur. This includes the Building Better Developers podcast. He is also a longtime student of technology as a developer, designer, and manager of software solutions. Rob is a founder and principle of RB Consulting and has managed to author a book about his family experiences. In his free time, he stays busy raising five children (although a few have grown into adults). When he has a chance to breathe, he is on the ice playing hockey to relax.

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