If you are a former member of the military looking to get a job in the civilian workplace, having a compelling, appealing resume is critical. If you’ve never applied for a civilian job before, or if it has been many years since you have done so, writing a great resume may seem a daunting challenge. Here are some tactics for creating a resume that will have potential employers clamoring to get you into their offices.

Lose the Military Jargon: In the military, you have become comfortable describing not only your actions and situations, but your responsibilities and skills in a way very specific to the military. Potential employers need to be convinced that you are prepared to assimilate into a civilian work force. The way you can convince them of this is by translating your military skills, jobs and responsibilities into civilian skills, jobs and responsibilities. There are numerous resources both on the Internet and from other sources that will help you with this translation.

Look Forward: There is much to be proud of in your military background, and where your military talents have practical civilian applications, you should highlight them. However, you want to make sure your employers know that you are prepared to commit yourself to a civilian life. Your resume should first and foremost illustrate your potential commitment to the position for which you are applying and your ability and determination to make whatever company takes you on more successful for having you as part of their team.

Be Professional: Nothing is easier for a prospective employer than discarding an unprofessional resume. There are a multitude of resources on the Internet that can show you proper resume format. Some word processing programs even have a resume template built in. Be sure your resume looks like something an employer would want to read. Proofread for grammatical or spelling errors. Using your computer’s spell check function isn’t good enough. The spell checker can miss words that are misspelled in such a way that they form other words. It also can’t tell you if you accidentally left out a word, added a word, or used the wrong word. Use the spell check, but also use your eye. Once you’ve done that, get a friend who is competent at spelling and grammar to do another proofread for you.

State Your Objectives: Let potential employers know that you understand the demands of the job for which you are applying and that you are prepared to meet them. A brief comment about your career objectives as they relate to the job at hand can make your resume stand out from many others. The resume is certainly not the only important part of the job seeking process, but it is a vital one. You don’t want to go through the trouble of finding the perfect job for you and writing an intriguing cover letter, only to present a resume that doesn’t highlight your talents effectively. Having a professional, concise resume that shows employers who you are and what you bring to the table can be the most significant step in landing that dream job.