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A building site is like a microcosm. Only the selected few have the skills to navigate it. And you’re one of them. Working as a contractor, you have extensive knowledge of planning building projects, choosing equipment, overseeing legal compliance, and establishing budgets.
However, the competition is fierce. To get new jobs, you need to convince prospective clients and business partners that you know the drill. The name of your company on your truck is not enough.
That’s why you need a professional contractor resume.
This guide will show you:
- A contractor resume example better than 9 out of 10 other resumes.
- How to write a contractor resume that will land you more interviews.
- Tips and examples of how to put skills and achievements on a contractor resume.
- How to describe your experience on a resume for a contractor to get any job you want.
Want to save time and have your resume ready in 5 minutes? Try our resume builder. It’s fast and easy to use. Plus, you’ll get ready-made content to add with one click. See 20+ resume templates and create your resume here.
Sample resume made with our builder—See more resume examples here.
Looking for a specific kind of resume for contractor jobs? See our guides:
- Architect Resume
- Construction Resume
- Construction Manager Resume
- Construction Project Manager Resume
- Construction Superintendent Resume
- Landscaping Resume
- Landscape Architecture Resume
- Maintenance Resume
- Maintenance Technician Resume
- Pipefitter Resume
- Electrician Resume
- Painter Resume
- HVAC Resume
- Mechanic Resume
- Material Handler Resume
- Handyman Resume
- Welder Resume
- Professional Resume Examples
Writing an IT contractor resume? Try these guides:
Wondering how to describe contract work on a resume? See this guide:
Contractor Resume Sample
Ben Yannovich, Licensed Contractor
Licensed contractor with 8+ years of experience. Skilled in project management and residential construction. Seeking to deliver construction excellence for Hall Brothers Construction. At Belcher Construction Co., resolved project construction issues 18% faster than company average. Coordinated plans for construction of 100+ homes per year in the $1M–$2M range.
Belcher Construction Co.
June 2013–May 2019
- Coordinated all planning and construction of 100+ homes per year valued at $1M to $2M each.
- Created budgets and followed through by qualifying competing subcontractor bids. Exceeded cost control targets by 10% or more in every quarter.
- Resolved issues with project construction 18% faster than the company average.
- Trained subcontractors on company quality standards during construction phase. Hit quality targets with 99.9% accuracy.
Tall Contracting of Kentucky
April 2011–June 2013
- Managed construction of 2 homes per month in upscale suburban neighborhoods.
- Led planning, budgeting, and construction, saving $1M in costs per year through negotiating better deals with subcontractors and suppliers.
2012 Spalding University
BS in Business Administration
- Pursued a passion for project management coursework.
- President, Men’s Intramural Baseball Organization.
Contractor License #2438239, Department of Housing, Building & Construction
- Technical Skills: Project management, negotiation, cost control, residential construction
- Soft Skills: Leadership, interpersonal skills, problem solving, communication
- Volunteer 3x per year to manage construction and repair of town playgrounds.
- Volunteer rescue driver, Woodford County Animal Shelter.
Here’s how to write a contractor resume that gets jobs:
1. Pick the Best Contractor Resume Format
Contractors work on behalf of others. In the construction world, general contractors manage subcontractors (including independent contractors) in the completion of projects, like building homes or industrial buildings. A contractor resume has to show leadership and interpersonal skills, as well as project management and budgeting.
You can prove you’re a good contractor at a glance.
By writing a well-formatted resume for contractor jobs.
To write yours:
- Start with a clean heading for your resume. Write your name and title (Licensed Contractor) in large font.
- Add phone number and contact info on a resume next, with an email address and LinkedIn address if you like.
- Use the best fonts for resumes like Georgia and Cambria.
- List the experience and education sections of your resume next, followed by bonus sections like volunteer work or activities.
- List all jobs in reverse chronological order on your resume.
- If you worked for a whole lot of different companies, alternative resume formats like the functional resume or combination resume might help you highlight your core qualifications.
Pro Tip: Save your contractors resume format in PDF as long as the job ad doesn’t say different. PDFs don’t degrade in transit.
2. Write a Contractor Resume Objective or Resume Summary
Don’t expect HR to read your contractor resume carefully.
Summarize it in an elevator speech.
Contractors with two or more years of experience should write a resume professional summary. Build it with:
- One adjective (“Efficient,” “Effective”)
- “Licensed Contractor”
- Years of experience
- Goal (“deliver construction excellence”)
- 1 or 2 skills from the job ad
- 1 or 2 accomplishments that best prove those skills
Those go in a resume objective. (Objectives for a resume are like professional summaries, but for new entrants to the workforce.)
Pro Tip: How long should your resume be for contract work? One page (unless you’ve built so many different kinds of structures you can’t possibly fit them all).
3. Cement Your Resume to the Contractor Job Description
You’re lost in the applicant pool.
Do it by showing you’re the perfect contractor for this role.
- Include only relevant work experience. That means showing you’ve done contracting tasks they mention in the online posting.
- For each of your past jobs, list business job titles and dates, plus organization names.
- Here’s the trick: add accomplishments that prove your worth.
- Put numbers in those accomplishments to solidify your claims. Example: “exceeded cost-control targets by 10% in every quarter.”
Pro Tip: Want the hiring team to read more of your general contractor resume? Use strong resume verbs like resolved, created, and exceeded to make it happen.
4. Form Up Your Contractor Resume Education Section
You don’t need to show much educational qualification in a resume for contractor jobs.
That said, there’s a trick to use it so it gets you hired.
Everyone lists school name, degree, and dates.
But you’ll add accomplishments to prove contractor skills.
Did you lead a student organization? That shows leadership.
Or were you passionate about project management classes? That’s a nice independent contractor resume education win.
Pro Tip: If you’re new to the working world, consider lengthening your resume education section. In a pinch, you can list an area of study as its own section, with its own bullets.
5. List Contractor Skills in Your Resume
Show off your contractor resume skill set.
You’ll need both soft and hard skills.
Contractor Resume Skills
Technical skills to put on resume for contractors:
- Project management
- Cost control
- Permit processing
- Building code knowledge
- Residential or industrial construction
- Sourcing vendors
- Power tool and hand tool operation
Soft Skills for Contractors:
- Interpersonal skills
- Leadership skills
- Detail oriented
- Physical strength
- Problem solving
- Oral and written communication
- Time management
- Organization skills
- Customer service
- Active listening
Pro Tip: Don’t overdo it. Putting 25 skills in a resume for contractors makes you look dishonest. Seek the few technical skills and soft skills they target in the online ad. Then prove them in your bullets.
When making a resume in our builder, drag & drop bullet points, skills, and auto-fill the boring stuff. Spell check? Check. Start building a professional resume template here for free.
6. Add Other Sections to Your Contractor Resume
Get more interviews.
Include bonus resume sections to boost your chances of landing this contractor job.
- Professional associations like your state contractor’s association
- Licenses and certifications
- Union membership
- Media appearances
- List of interests
- Commendations from higher-ups or clients
- Sports activities
List language proficiency on a resume in your skills list—unless the online posting says it’s central to the role. If so, add it as a unique section with a bullet list.
Pro Tip: Don’t know how to describe volunteer work on a resume for contractor jobs? If you were doing contractor work for free, put it in “Volunteering” section. If not, put it in “Activities.”
7. Send a Cover Letter With Your Contractor Resume
Are cover letters important with contractor resumes?
A well-crafted contractor cover letter can help you stand out from the pile.
Here’s how to write one:
- Start with a good example cover letter.
- Use the respected 3-paragraph covering letter format.
- Put a huge hook in your cover letter start. Example: “When I maintained a 99.9% quality rating for four years...”
- Build passion in your cover letter middle. Talk up accomplishments that prove skills needed in this contractor job.
- Here’s how to finish a cover letter Example: “I’d love to tell you how I resolved issues 18% faster than the business average.”
How long does a cover letter have to be for contractor applications? Half a page.
Pro Tip: Here’s how to follow up on job application: Once a week, send a one-sentence note that says, “Dear [HIRING MANAGER NAME], I’m following up on my application for your open contractor position. Sincerely...”
Plus, a great cover letter that matches your resume will give you an advantage over other candidates. You can write it in our cover letter builder here. Here's what it may look like:
That’s how to write a contractor resume.
Is your subcontractor resume too busy? Are you afraid they’ll skip your resume for contractor jobs? Give us a shout in the comments. We’d love to talk!
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