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Outside Sales Representative Resume: Examples and Tips

Outside sales representatives reach out to customers through in-person interactions to generate sales. They meet with prospective clients as well as existing clients to present sales proposals, negotiate deals and maintain fruitful customer relationships. This role typically requires a bachelor’s degree in marketing or a related field, and a track record of outside sales experience.

To get ahead in this career, take the first step with a polished resume, using these tips and resume templates.

Top 4 Characteristics of a Best-in-class Outside Sales Representative Resume

  1. Summary Start your resume with a brief overview of your skills and key responsibilities, and how you’ve used your abilities to make a positive impact. Use numbers to showcase your achievements. For instance, instead of writing “trained team to increase sales,” try “mentored five sales representatives to boost department sales by 5%.” Look to emphasize strengths which are in line with the job profile (e.g., sales CRM experience), while keeping your information factual and accurate.
  2. Skills An outside sales representative needs strong communication skills and the ability to build rapport with people from all walks of life. Other vital skills include negotiation, customer relationship management and excellent product knowledge. Scan the job description to get a feel of what recruiters are looking for, and use that knowledge in assembling relevant skills in your resume.
  3. Work history Buff up your work experience section with accomplishments at work that display your best attributes, using positive language and action verbs. This is your opportunity to show how you can improve a company. Be sure to quantify your achievements, e.g., “improved customer base by 20%.” Make sure to mention any awards or recognitions you’ve received at work within this section.
  4. Education Outside sales representative positions usually require at least a high school diploma or GED. List your highest educational qualification, along with any vocational courses or training you’ve had in business communication, marketing or other related fields.

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Find the Right Template for Your Resume

Worried your resume-building skills aren’t up to scratch? Behold these three templates that can do the job for you.

Cool

This creative, well-defined layout is easy for recruiter’s to skim. The job seeker’s name is prominently displayed against a bold banner, while information is neatly organized in two columns.

Centered

This traditional design is partnered with a touch of color to create an engaging look. This easy-to-read template is an excellent pick for professionals with all ranges of work experience.

Professional

This classic design presents your academic and work history in a minimalistic design. If you use this layout, focus on your summary statement, as it gets extra prominence.

Choose from even more templates in MyPerfectResume’s templates page.

Do’s and Don’ts for Your Resume

  • Do use action words Action words such as maintained, devised, or trained present you as a person who is at the center of your accomplishments. On the other hand, using phrases like “was responsible for” diminishes the role you played. When highlighting your achievements, stick to action verbs. For example, instead of writing “Was given the job of training new employees” you should write “Trained new employees.”
  • Do add keywords Before you draft your resume, go through the job description thoroughly so you can take note of the skills the employer is looking for. Then add skills that match your own strengths to your resume, especially in your summary, skills and work history sections. Show through your experience and training how you’ve gained or applied these attributes (while being totally truthful, of course).
  • Do select the right resume format Selecting a format that best presents your strengths is crucial. If you have a rich work history, a chronological format allows you to present a detailed career progression and how you’ve advanced. If you’re an entry-level professional, opt for a functional format, as it focuses on your skills rather than your work experience. A combination resume takes elements from both of the above formats, making it great for a mid-level employee who wants to to highlight both work experience and skills.
  • Don’t use negative phrases Try to use positive language in your resume. For example, instead of writing “solved communication problems within the department,” write ”Created and successfully implemented strategies to boost communication.” Putting a positive spin on this activity emphasizes your ability to take charge, while using the negative phrasing opens the door to the possibility that you may have been responsible for the negative situation in the first place.
  • Don’t use clichés When recruiters review resumes, they’re looking for someone who can stand out from the crowd. Clichés like “team player” or “hard worker” won’t move the needle, and could put off the reader, especially if these qualities aren’t mentioned in the job description. Instead, try to use terms specific to your field or industry jargon. For example, if you’re in sales, mention your understanding of HubSpot and Freshsales software, rather than just stating “Proficient in sales software.”
  • Don’t overdo keywords Keywords are a great tool to help you pass applicant tracking systems (ATS) that scan your resume for the right content. However, don’t try overstuffing keywords or directly copying text from the job description into your resume. Your resume should reflect who you are, and feature your voice. Instead of overloading on keywords, present accomplishments and skills that prove you embody them.

Outside Sales Representative Resume FAQs

1. What are the skills you should emphasize for this specific job?

It’s essential that a sales representative has a strong customer service aptitude, and can be an active listener while responding to customer requirements. Below are other important related skills you can add to your resume:

  • Negotiation skills
  • Track customer purchases and maintain records
  • In-depth product knowledge
  • Ability to up-sell or cross-sell products
  • Handling customer queries and problems with ease
  • Sales prowess
  • Ability to build rapport with different individuals
  • Presentation skills
  • Positive and goal-oriented
  • Resourceful team player

2. What are some examples of training and certifications that fit this specific resume?

While your work experience is an important aspect of your resume, recruiters will also be impressed by those who train up on valuable skills outside work. Break away from a standard cookie-cutter resume by considering training in these areas:

  • Sales-based training, such as SPIN selling or the Challenger training programs
  • Relationship-building skills through courses in communication and presentation
  • Building your office skills, such as gaining proficiency in account management and computer applications

3. How should you format your resume?

The format you choose will be largely based on your work experience and the position you’re applying for. A functional format highlights your skills and is good for entry-level positions, or for job seekers who lack extensive work experience, while a chronological format is great for seasoned professionals. A combination format presents a mix of both work experience and skills, and is a good fit for someone with a few years of experience, or is switching over from another field and can feature transferable skills.

Once you have a format in mind, create a resume with a simple layout. Avoid flashy colors and illegible fonts that could confuse recruiters (and resume review software). Remember to make use of key phrases and skills from the job description, and be complete in your information, including any academic qualifications and extracurricular experiences that indicate you’re a good fit.

4. How should you craft your resume if you’re looking to take the next step forward in your career?

Above all, you should prove that you can do more than sell. Create a more well-rounded profile by opting for vocational programs or certifications in account management or customer relationship management, or level up your technical skills with more computer or project management instruction. Remember to work on your soft skills too, such as time management, interpersonal communication, proficiency in written communication and multitasking ability.

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