3 Ways Career Changers Can Use ChatGPT to Identify and Convey Transferable Skills on a Resume

By Sumayya Essack and Maggie Luo

For career changers, a key task is to be able to communicate on your resume the transferable skills you bring to the table. This helps recruiters and hiring managers see that while you may not have direct experience in your target role, you bring relevant skills. Here are 3 steps to leverage ChatGPT in this process

1. Use ChatGPT to identify key skills needed in your target career/role:

  • Ask ChatGPT about the key skills needed in your target function and/or industry.
    Example Prompt 1:  “What skills do hiring managers and recruiters look for in post-MBA Product Management roles?”
    Example Prompt 2:  “What are the top 10 skills required for a quantitative research role at a hedge fund?” Note the skills provided in the response and check them against other resources. 

  • Ask ChatGPT to identify the key skills needed based on target jobs.
    Example Prompt 1:Given the job description below, could you specify the technical and soft skills required for this role?” 

2. Identify your transferable skills:

Identifying your transferable skills is often the most challenging aspect of resume preparation for career changers. Here are 2 suggested ways that ChatGPT can help you. 

  • Use ChatGPT to help identify your transferable skills based on your past experiences. Describe your work history and aspirations to get suggestions on relevant skills.  
    ChatGPT will propose a number of skills you likely have, and it will break those down into sub-skills and phrasing that may be helpful on your resume (or in networking conversations). Not all of the skills listed may be part of your repertoire or relevant to your target jobs, but they can help you identify the language to describe many of your skills and experiences.
    Example Prompt:
    What transferable skills do I have that I should emphasize on my resume? I am an MBA student, and prior to business school, I worked in project management, economic consulting, and healthcare. I want to be a product manager at a big tech company like Google.” 

  • Paste in your resume and ask ChatGPT to identify your transferable skills and gaps for your target role.  
    Example Prompt 1:Analyze my resume and tell me what transferable skills I have or don’t have for a post-MBA role in product management.”
    Example Prompt 2:I am seeking a quantitative research/data analyst role. Based on my resume, please create a table with three columns. In the first column, list the skills required for quantitative research. The second column should highlight my transferable skills from my experience, and the third column should detail my specific past experiences. Here is my resume for reference: 

3.  Optimize the resume:

  • Keyword generation: First, use ChatGPT to generate industry-specific keywords and phrases that you can incorporate into your resume.

    Example Prompt 1: “What keywords should be on my resume as an MBA student pursuing post-MBA roles in product management at Google or Amazon?” 
    Example Prompt 2: “Based on the job descriptions below, could you please list 20 key technical skill keywords that I should include in my resume to make me a qualified candidate?”

  • Bullet Points with Examples: Next, collaborate with ChatGPT to create impactful bullet points for your transferable skills. Provide examples of how you’ve demonstrated these skills in past roles to make them more convincing. 

While ChatGPT can be a useful tool to help you brainstorm, it’s not meant to write resume bullets for you. Use it as a starting point, edit your resume text to ensure you’re presenting your experience in the best light, and seek feedback from Career Advisors, peers, and alumni or contacts in your target industry. Your dedication to refining your resume is well worth the time for career changers! 

By MIT Sloan CDO