Job hunting can be confusing. You know you need a resume, but what is it exactly? What makes a good one? Relax. Here’s everything you need to know.
Abstract: Chemists use a variety of techniques to manipulate matter for the purposes of analysis, production, and experimentation. The purpose of your chemist resume is to show recruiters that you know your way around a laboratory and that you’re a well-rounded employee.
Modern chemistry still has some of the magic of alchemy—
The ability to rearrange atoms and transmute matter is really something.
Just like writing the perfect chemist resume—
With the right elements properly arranged, your chemistry resume can turn a career as dull and gray as lead into a future as bright as gold.
You just need an effective method.
In this guide:
- A chemist resume sample better than four out of five out there.
- Writing the perfect chemist resume job descriptions.
- How to write a resume for chemist jobs that stands out like litmus-pink.
- Expert tips and examples to boost your chances of landing a chemist job.
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Chemistry Resume Template
Meticulous chemist with 5+ years’ experience working directly with pharmaceuticals and their quality control. At Holden & Associates, performed quality control testing on 80+ products and reduced product costs by an average of 9% by changing existing formulations. Seeking to help maintain ZetaCeuticals’ high standards while boosting efficiency.
Holden & Associates
- Performed quality control testing on 80+ products according to established GMP and SOP’s.
- Produced and maintained calibration records, keeping error margins stable while reducing redundant re-calibrations by over 35%.
- Analyzed and certified 15+ complex liquid and gas calibration standards using gas chromatography.
- Reduced product costs by an average of 9% by changing existing formulations.
September 2016–March 2018
- Analyzed 17 veterinary pharmaceutical products for purity, potency, and stability using established assays.
- Maintained laboratory equipment like HPLC, UPLC, UV-Vis, FTIR, and dissolution apparatus.
- Assisted with inventory and ordering of laboratory consumable supplies.
- Documented work and maintained good laboratory records in notebooks and on controlled documentation.
BS in Chemistry, University of South Dakota
- Pursued a passion for organic synthesis through elective lab work.
- Active member of the Alchemists’ Guild (chemistry and food science society).
- Technical writing
- Organic synthesis
- Analytical skills
- Certified Professional Chemist, National Certification Commission in Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, 2017
- Clinical Chemist, National Registry of Certified Chemists, 2016
- Spanish – Advanced
Here’s the procedure for writing a chemist resume that’ll bump them up into an excited state:
1. Select the Best Chemist Resume Format
You wouldn’t follow a lab manual that put procedures before equipment—
So don’t expect recruiters and hiring managers to follow a poorly formatted resume.
Clarity and order are important to your work—
They’re important to getting work, too.
Make your resume layout as clean and clear as pristine glassware. Here’s how:
Chemistry Resume Format
- Use the reverse-chronological resume format—it’s an expected resume style.
- Choose a professional resume font, like a Arial or Noto in 11–12 pt.
- Use one-inch resume marginsand space your resume out, keeping it sparse and clean.
- Submit a one-page resume unless you have over 20 years’ experience.
- Use at least these resume sections: Resume Header, Summary, Experience, Education, and Skills.
Save your resume in PDF, unless you’ve been asked for something else. PDF will help preserve your layout across operating systems and programs.
2. Start With a Chemist Resume Objective or Summary That Pulls Them in Like Osmosis
You’ve got all your apparatus laid out—
All that’s left to do is figure out how to start your resume.
Got some experience as a chemist?
Start with a resume summary statement—
- One adjective (precise, conscientious)
- Job title (chemist)
- Years of experience (3+, 5+)
- What you hope to achieve for your employer (maintain high standards while increasing efficiency)
- Most impressive 2–3 achievements (reduced reagent use by 37%, identified over 200 samples)
These chemistry resume examples will give you a better idea:
Chemistry Resume Examples—Resume Summary
The first example is packed full of facts and figures: every claim is quantified.
It’s also focused on what the candidate can do for the employer, not the other way around.
What if you don’t have the experience to saturate your chemistry resume?
Start with a resume objective statement and focus on any relevant experience you do have, as well as your chemistry skills.
Chemistry Resume Examples—Resume Objective
Does the second one pass the litmus test?
It’s the first one that shows what the candidate can bring to the table.
The first resume objective is also loaded with resume keywords—scan the job ad to find the right keywords for your application.
This is the best way to get your resume past an Applicant Tracking System (ATS).
Mentioning the name of the company and job title is another good trick.
These small changes will help you target your resume.
Write your resume profile last—it’ll be much easier.
3. Write the Perfect Chemistry Job Descriptions and Skills Section
The best way to show you’re up to the task—
Is to show you’ve done it before, and done it well.
This is where your resume work experience section comes in.
How to write a winning job description for your chemist resume:
- Revisit the job ad, take your time and read through it slowly.
- Take note of the skills and duties mentioned there.
- Think of times you’ve demonstrated those skills and performed similar duties.
- Write resume bullets that detail these things, being sure to quantify everything possible.
These chemist resume examples will show you what you’re aiming for:
Chemistry Resume Examples—Job Descriptions
Both do a good job of using resume power words, but—
The first one impresses with its concrete, quantified resume achievements.
These achievements are all about bringing benefits to employers.
Job descriptions won’t cover everything, though—
So add a resume skills section to fill in the blanks.
But don’t do the obvious thing:
Don’t just pack your chemist resume with all the skills you could find.
The job ad will tell you what’s required—pick 5–10 of your skills that match those requirements.
Use the list below for inspiration, but don’t just copy it verbatim—that’s an obvious move and tantamount to lying on your resume.
Chemistry Resume Skills
- Apparatus preparation
- Protocol optimization
- Organic synthesis
- Chemical analysis
- Hazardous waste handling and disposal
- Wet chemistry
- Statistical analysis
- CambridgeSoft ChemOffice Ultra
- Computer skills
- Critical thinking
- Interpersonal skills
- Time management
- Database management
- Training others
- Positive attitude
- Deductive reasoning
- Inductive reasoning
Include some soft skills in your chemistry resume—they’re often overlooked by scientific types.
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4. Convert Your Education Section From Inert to Catalyst
The days of having a career in chemistry without a formal education have gone the way of the top hat.
Keep your resume education section short and sweet.
List the degree, school, and graduation date.
That’s the minimum—
Add bonus bullets that speak to relevant achievements and key skills.
Here’s a chemist resume example:
Chemistry Resume Example—Education
Simple but effective.
Short on chemist experience?
Add more bullet points that go into projects, relevant coursework, and academic accomplishments.
5. Saturate Your Chemist Resume With Added Sections
There’s a way to make your case as strong as an ionic bond—
A lot can slip through the cracks of the usual resume sections.
Don’t let anything relevant slip through the Whatman No.12.
Add one or two additional resume sections:
- Foreign Languages
- Professional Development
- Hobbies and Personal Interests
- Volunteer Work
- Professional References
These two chemistry resume examples show yay vs nay:
Chemistry Resume Examples—Extra Sections
The second example breaks the cardinal rule:
Anything and everything you add here has to be directly relevant to the job at hand.
Even hobbies are fair game, but they have to be relevant.
One final step—
You’ll need a chemistry cover letter.
You get a free pass only if you’ve been explicitly asked not to include a cover letter. Otherwise, you risk having your chemist resume sublimate unread.
Double your impact with a matching resume and cover letter combo. Use our cover letter builder and make your application documents pop out.
Want to try a different look? There’s 18 more. A single click will give your document a total makeover. Pick a cover letter template here.
For a chemist resume that yields interviews:
- Use the chemistry resume template up above. It’s set up to be just right for the task.
- Put chemistry achievementsin your summary/objective, job descriptions, and education section to show you’ve got what it takes.
- Isolate the right chemistry skills. The job ad will tell you which ones to keep.
- Write a chemist cover letter. Use it to light up your passion like a strip of magnesium.
Got any niggling doubts as to how to get your chemistry resume to rise to the top? Leave any questions and comments down below and we’ll be sure to get back to you.