1. Blog
  2. Resume Help
  3. How to show a promotion on your resume: The simple guide
Written by Charlotte GraingerCharlotte Grainger

How to show a promotion on your resume: The simple guide

13 min read
How to show a promotion on your resume: The simple guide
Artwork by:Stas Podgornov
Showing off your promotion doesn’t have to be hard. In this blog, we reveal three of the simple ways you can list this achievement on your resume.

Are you a real go-getter bounding up the career ladder? If you’re brimming with ambition and always work hard, getting a promotion is the pay-off you deserve. Plus, when you’re ready to apply for a new job, highlighting this feat is a sure-fire way to get ahead. So, how do you show a promotion on your resume? Luckily, we’ve got you covered here.

Let’s take a look at how you can dazzle employers with your promotion in seconds. Within this bite-sized guide, we will cover the following: 

  • How getting that all-important promotion matters to recruiters
  • The three easiest ways to show a promotion on your resume
  • How to format your resume when listing your promotions
  • General tips and insights to help you along the way.

How a promotion helps you stand out from the crowd

Before we get started, we need a bit of background to kick things off. Let’s talk about why showing your promotion on your resume is important. Put simply, there are two core reasons that this impressive feat will ‘wow’ recruiters and hiring managers. 

First of all, the fact that your employer promoted you shows you were a great employee. You must have done something right to earn it. Hiring managers will see this as evidence that you are a dedicated worker who has ambition to climb the career ladder. 

It doesn’t end there. Your promotion suggests you’ve stayed with the same company for a matter of years. That’s music to the hiring manager’s ears. It costs companies an average of $4,000 to hire each new staff member. If new hires are in it for the short-term — and will move on after a year or so — that hefty price tag soon adds up.

Statistical insight

Looking for your big break?

Experts suggest that early-career professionals should aim to be promoted every three years. If you’re not moving up the career ladder as fast as you had hoped, it may be time to look at making a career shift. Consider your long-term goals and where you see yourself in the next five or even 10 years. 

How to write a resume
Related article
How to write a resume

All the tips, tools, templates, and examples you need to learn how to write a resume in 2022

Three ways to show a promotion on your resume

Ready to show your promotion on your resume? As the age-old saying goes, there’s more than one way to skin a cat. When you’re adding this information to your resume, there are three options to choose from — the stacked approach, the separate entries approach, and the duplicate entries approach. Which one you use will depend on the type of promotion.

Don’t let the terminology bamboozle you. We’re here to explain what each approach means, how you can format it on your resume, and why you might want to use it. With that in mind, here are three of the easiest ways to show off your promotion. 

Do I have to include all jobs on my resume?
Related article
Do I have to include all jobs on my resume?

Many people struggle when faced with the task, do I add all my experience to my resume? While there are no hard-and-fast rules concerning your previous employment, the following tips should help you give you a better idea of whether or not it's necessary to list all of your past jobs on your resume.

The stacked entry approach 

Perhaps the simplest option here is the stacked entry approach. It’s slick, it’s clear, and it doesn’t take up too much valuable resume real estate. You should use this listing approach when you have held similar positions at the same company. Ensure that the duties you have had within each position overlap or, at least, have some similarities. 

To format a stacked entry promotion list, start with the company name and location. Under that, stack your job titles and dates at that company in reverse chronological order, starting with your most recent role. 

Next up, you can use bullet points to illustrate your duties and achievements. Wherever possible, you should quantify your achievements. So, rather than saying that you "increased outbound sales," you should state that you “increased outbound sales by 20 percent.” See the example below: 

Example

Edwards & Sons, New York 

Sales Manager | Jan 2015 - Present 

Sales Executive | Mar 2012 - Dec 2014

  • Managed a team of 30 sales executives and monitored monthly goals.
  • Increased outbound sales by 20 percent over three years.
  • Nurtured existing clients and leads.
  • Oversaw regular progression meetings with team members.
  • Identified upcoming clients’ needs and offered insights to upper management.
Copied!
Expert tip

Trying to get past the Applicant Tracking System (ATS) ? You might want to avoid using the stacked entry approach. The software may only scan the second position you list — which is the junior job title. That means that your application could end up in the ‘junk’ folder despite the fact that you are qualified for the job at hand. 

Is it OK to have a two-page resume?
Related article
Is it OK to have a two-page resume?

The temptation to increase your resume to two pages is real, but is it the right thing to do? For a director-level job seeker, the answer will be yes, but what about everyone else? If you do opt for two pages, make the most of them.

Separate entries (under one company) approach

Not all promotions are linear. If you took a side-step in your company or moved into a different department, chances are that your duties looked strikingly different. That’s okay. In that case, you can use the separate entries under one company name format. 

Once again, you should start with the company name and location. Beneath that, add your most recent position, the dates, your duties, and your achievements. After that, add all of the above about your older positions in reverse chronological order. See our example: 

Example

Edwards & Sons, New York 

Sales Manager | Jan 2015 - Present 

  • Managed a team of 30 sales executives and monitored monthly goals.
  • Increased outbound sales by 20 percent over three years.
  • Nurtured existing clients and leads.
  • Oversaw regular progression meetings with team members.
  • Identified upcoming clients’ needs and offered insights to upper management.

Team Leader | Feb 2012 - Dec 2014

  • Managed a team of 10+ staff members.
  • Scheduled the staff member’s shifts and timetables.
  • Hosted monthly team building and training workshops for the department.
  • Managed any interoffice conflicts or disagreements.
  • Continually worked to understand the employees’ support-based needs.
Copied!

This format is straightforward. It effortlessly shows hiring managers the difference between the roles you have held. While it’s ideal for a resume, if you are completing an online application form, you may find that you need to list the company name more than once. 

10 Leadership skills to include on your resume + examples
Related article
10 Leadership skills to include on your resume + examples

Sharing your array of leadership skills is essential to securing your dream job, so which ones do you showcase on your resume and how do you talk about them?

The duplicate entries approach

You will likely need to use one of the approaches above. However, there is one instance when you should make duplicate entries on your resume. If you have left a company and then returned after a period, you should list the business twice on your resume. That way, hiring managers can clearly see the dates you were employed at the company. 

You should list each of your positions — at the same company and different companies — are separate entries on your resume. That is important if you worked for different businesses in between your two roles. While you may be tempted to use the stacking approach, that could confuse recruiters. Instead, keep things simple, as in our example:

Example

Edwards & Sons, New York 

Sales Manager | Jan 2015 - Present 

  • Managed a team of 30 sales executives and monitored monthly goals.
  • Increased outbound sales by 20 percent over three years.
  • Nurtured existing clients and leads.
  • Conducted regular progression meetings with team members.
  • Identified upcoming clients’ needs and offered insights to upper management.

Treetop Travel Inc., New York 

Office Lead | Feb 2013 - Dec 2014

  • Managed an office of 15+ staff members.
  • Oversaw the shift timetable including managing overtime.
  • Organized training days for the entire sales department.
  • Generated monthly progression reports for each staff member.
  • Helped to increase the overall customer base by 15 percent in two years.

Edwards & Sons, New York 

Team Leader | Feb 2010 - Jan 2013

  • Managed a team of 10+ staff members.
  • Scheduled the staff member’s shifts and timetables.
  • Hosted monthly team building and training workshops for the department.
  • Managed any interoffice conflicts or disagreements.
  • Continually worked to understand the employees’ support-based needs.
Copied!
Best resume format 2022 (+free examples)
Related article
Best resume format 2022 (+free examples)

There are 3 common resume formats: chronological, functional, and a combination. Here's how to choose the right one for you.

Formatting tips when listing your promotion

Want to get working on your resume and show off your promotions? Before you start typing away, there are a few pointers that will help you get things right: 

  1. Use bullet points for your achievements. While you may be tempted to pop some stars, arrows, or circles next to your points, that’s a mistake. ATS software may have difficulty reading these symbols. Stick to bullet points.
  2. Don’t cram too much information in. Got a lot to say? Recruiters are unlikely to favor ‘busy’ resumes. Avoid fluffy language. Only include information that is relevant to the job for which you’re applying. Edit, and then edit again.
  3. Include the month and the year. This is no time to be vague. When you’re listing your promotions, make sure that you include both the month and the year. ATS software needs these details to accurately determine how long you held each post.

Key takeaways

  • Promotions will turn recruiters’ heads for the right reasons. Make sure that you showcase yours front and center on your resume.
  • As a golden rule, never list the company name and location more than once when listing promotions. The only exception is when you have worked for another employer in between two positions at the same company.
  • You can use between five and six bullet points under each position to demonstrate your accomplishments and duties.
  • The tips that we have shared within this guide will help you to optimize your resume and get past the ATS software.
  • View our resume examples for some additional inspiration and build your own resume!
Build your resume in 15 minutes
Build your resume in 15 minutes
Use professional field-tested resume templates that follow the exact ‘resume rules’ employers look for.
Create My Resume
Build your resume in 15 minutes
Build your resume in 15 minutes
Use professional field-tested resume templates that follow the exact ‘resume rules’ employers look for.
Create My Resume
Share this article
Keep reading
Job Interview21 min read
What to bring to an interview (and what to leave at home)
What to bring to an interview (and what to leave at home)
Career17 min read
15 productivity lessons from successful founders
15 productivity lessons from successful founders
Career10 min read
Conflict resolution skills: examples and solutions
Conflict Resolution Skills: Examples and Solutions
Career24 min read
20 LinkedIn profile tips to use in 2022
20 LinkedIn profile tips to use in 2022
Browse All
This website uses cookies to improve user experience and perform analytics and marketing. By using our website, you consent to all cookies in accordance with our Cookie Policy and Privacy Policy.
Accept Cookies