Career / Career Progression

Strong to Stellar: 3 Ways To Strengthen a SysAdmin Resume

by Team Nuggets
Strong to Stellar: 3 Ways To Strengthen a SysAdmin Resume picture: A
Follow us
Published on July 12, 2017

Preparing the perfect resume can be challenging for everyone, from recent college grads to seasoned IT professionals. Part of the problem is the debate over the best format and even what to include.

The best resumes are specific, clear, and customized to your desired role. In the IT world, there's seemingly a lot of overlap within job titles, and job descriptions can be vague. So, how do you create a resume that cuts through the noise? We offer three ways to create a SysAdmin resume that stands out.

1. Highlight Your Most Relevant Qualifications

Recruiters and hiring managers often review your resume to see how closely your IT skills match the job description. Don't be afraid to tailor your resume for each role using some of the keywords in the description. Highlight the qualifications that are most relevant to the role.

Some resumes, maybe even yours right now, kick off with an objective statement like this:

Objective: To use my skills to obtain a Senior Systems Administrator position at XYZ Company.

Instead of including an objective statement, consider leading off with your most relevant skills and qualifications. After all, submitting your resume already signifies that your objective is to work in a particular role at that particular company.

One way to do this is to write a summary. This provides anyone viewing your resume with a snapshot of what you bring to the table, which is helpful when they're going through dozens or even hundreds of resumes from your fellow applicants.

You may do this in a couple of sentences or a short paragraph:

CompTIA+ Certified Systems Administrator with 5+ years of experience in Windows Server installation, configuration, and management.

Or with bullet points:

  • 5+ years of Windows Server installation, configuration, and management

  • CompTIA+ certified

  • Expertise in PowerShell, Docker, and Azure.

And so on.

Remember that a summary is one of those components of a resume that not everyone agrees on. But it can be essential if you're a recent grad, switching careers, or have anything on your resume that needs a bit of explanation because you can use the summary to keep the focus on your relevant skills.

However, if you have a straightforward career path, you may save space and use the listings in your career history to highlight your most important skills and accomplishments.

Bottom line: A summary can be a helpful way to start your resume, and it's only useful if it's specific and targeted to an individual position.

2. Show Off Your Technical Skills

Whether or not you use a summary to introduce your resume, you should show off your technical skills early and often. Avoiding buzzwords as much as possible and list the software, operating systems, servers, and other technologies.

What's the best format for listing your technical skills? That can vary, but a good rule of thumb is to avoid listing the skill as part of a responsibility (e.g., Managed X with Y) but as an accomplishment that garnered results (e.g., Managed X with Y, to achieve Z). Frame the technical skill in the context of its impact on your role or organization.

For example:

  • Monitored event logs on servers, routers, and other network equipment, using Splunk and other tools, proactively addressing issues as they arose

  • Led planning and rollout of a new mobile phone system for 250 users, including daily management and usage audit, increasing overall personnel productivity

As you can see, these bullet points show not just what you can do but how and why it's important.

3. List Your Certifications

Don't forget to highlight any certifications you've earned on your resume. You may have included these in your introductory summary if you wrote one, but it's a good idea to list them in a separate section to ensure nothing is overlooked.

Depending on their relevance, include your certs before or after your work history. For example, if your only cert is a PMP, but you're going for a sysadmin role that doesn't include project management, include it at the bottom, following your relevant work history. If your certs are especially relevant to the roles you're seeking, list them at the top.

And don't hesitate to include additional training courses you've completed, like the CBT Nuggets courses you've completed!

4. Bonus Tip: Include Your Soft Skills

You know you're good at troubleshooting while maintaining the utmost patience and professionalism, but how do you include that on a resume? Simply listing those types of soft skills may feel a bit artificial, so include them more subtly.

The solution is to weave your soft skills into your other accomplishments. This may not be possible for every bullet point, but when possible, include the soft skill you used.

For even better results, use the soft skills required in the job listing (e.g., self-starter, effective communicator, collaborative). For example:

  • Independently developed and initiated cybersecurity training for all new employees, reducing the overall number of incidents

  • Implemented ZenDesk ticketing system, ran employee survey to measure user satisfaction with IT, and adjusted system based on responses in order to foster collaboration between IT and other departments

Creating an effective, attention-grabbing resume takes thought and effort, but it doesn't have to be painful. Ensure that you highlight your most relevant qualifications, show off your technical skills and your certs, and weave in your soft skills where you can. You're on your way to a stellar Sysadmin resume.

Learn more about the CBT Nuggets Learning Experience.


By submitting this form you agree to receive marketing emails from CBT Nuggets and that you have read, understood and are able to consent to our privacy policy.

Don't miss out!Get great content
delivered to your inbox.

By submitting this form you agree to receive marketing emails from CBT Nuggets and that you have read, understood and are able to consent to our privacy policy.

Recommended Articles

Get CBT Nuggets IT training news and resources

I have read and understood the privacy policy and am able to consent to it.

© 2024 CBT Nuggets. All rights reserved.Terms | Privacy Policy | Accessibility | Sitemap | 2850 Crescent Avenue, Eugene, OR 97408 | 541-284-5522