Create a Career Objective

Your career objective is a personal statement defining the specifics you wish to gain through professional work. an objective plan can help you target your job search and can help employers know if your decision fits well into their hiring plans. Here are some points to consider when narrowing down your objective: 

  • It’s personal – Your objective should state your goals in terms that you are comfortable with.
  • It’s a commitment – State a goal that identifies who you re AND what you want to achieve.
  • It’s specific – Broad terms like “successful” or “challenging” may mean something to you but convey no facts to an employer.
  • It’s an action-oriented – Proactively communicate your skills and accomplishments.
  • It’s directional – Focus on your future and identify steps to take. Your focus can be short-term or long-term.

You can also choose to include your objective in your cover letter or your resume. A clear and focused objective helps you target you job search and better communicate with potential employers. 


  • Skills
  • Populations
  • Career Field
  • Position Title
  • Organizational Category
  • Functional area
  • Goals
  • Other Factors 

Deciding what to include in a career objective can be difficult! But the elements you choose should accurately and concisely describe your goals.

Develop Your Career Objective 

Deciding what to include in a career objective can be difficult! But the elements you choose should accurately and concisely describe your goals.

1. Skills

Skills are special talents, functions, or tasks that you have learned to do well. Some of these skills might be used in one occupations. Most jobs require a combination of skills. Identifying your combination lets the employer know where you might fit in the organization.


Specific Skills are focused actions or behaviors you have used perform tasks. Identifying specific skills in your career objective allows you to highlight your strengths or specializations within a general skill area. 


For example: 

“To use my artistic skills creating graphic layouts for an advertising agency.”

“To work for a rehabilitation agency and use my layouts for an advertising agency.” 


General Skills are broad areas which encompass related specific skills. Identifying general skills in an objective establishes the combination of skill areas you prefer to use in your work.


General areas you may want to highlight include administrative, artistic, athletic, clerical, communications, creative, human relations, management, mathematical mechanical, scientific and technical. 


For example:

“To use my scientific and human relations skills as a nursing supervisor.”

“To work for a government agency using my management and communication skills.” 


Populations are the people with whom you work. They could be your colleagues, but generally, populations in a career objective refer to the clients or customers of your products or services. 


For example:

“To work with elderly individuals in the field of recreational therapy.”

“To design programs for children with disabilities.”

3.Career Field 

Career fields are general areas of work that include many different job titles but encompass similar work activities. Identifying the career field category allows you to specify which area you are interested in without limiting yourself to specific job titles. While you may be interested in several career fields, it is better to limit yourself to one for purpose of the career objective. 


For example:

“To work in the healthcare field as an administrator in a service delivery unit.”

“To research the field of law.”

4.Position Title

Position title, occupational title, or job title is the name of a specific position one holds. While some organizations may have their own reference names, most position titles are generic and generalizable to many organizations.


Listing a position title objective is appropriate if you know yo will be applying for a specific position. 


For example:

“To obtain the position of accountant with a public accounting firm and eventually become a partner.”

“To act as a community organizer where I can use my human relations, administrative, and research skills.”

5.Organizational Category

Organizational category refers to setting in which you might like to work. Typically, organizations are categorized by industry groups. One or more of these groups may appeal to you! Identifying a category or industry group helps you identify specific employers within that group. Write your objective with a narrow focus and demonstrate interest in a specific setting, without naming individual employers. 


For example:

“To work within the telecommunications industry as a technical advisor.”

“To secure a position as an editor for mid-size publishing firm.” 

6.Functional Area

Functional area refers to the structure of an organization. Most organizations are divided into various departments, each responsible for completion of specific tasks or functions.A large organization tends to be more differentiated, meaning that it can have more specific functions. Smaller organizations may have the same department handling several functions.Identifying a functional area specifies which part of the organization you are interested in without narrowing yourself to a specific industry group or organizational category. 


For example:

“To work in the government relations area within a Fortune 500 organization.”

“To obtain a management trainee position within the quality control unit of a production department.” 


Short-term goals are those you wish to achieve immediately. Identifying short-term goals helps you focus on where to begin your professional career. Also, they help you identify next steps in your job search. 


For example:

“To obtain an entry-level position as weather observer.”


Long-term goals are those you wish to achieve in five to ten years. 

Having long-term goals can:


  • Help you and the employer evaluate if there is a match with respect to where you may start, advance, and finish in a given time period.
  • Give you a benchmark to evaluate your situation, including the opportunities and problems working presents. A long-term goal can help you make better decisions. 


For example:

“To begin employment in a beverage management position, which provides opportunities for advancement to a policy-making position in the organization.” 

8.Other Factors

There are other elements you can place in your career objective. These are important to identify and may include limits, conditions, or personal criteria which would affect your work situation.


However, being to narrowly focused may cause you to overlook potential opportunities. 


For example:

“To work outdoors in a supervisory capacity for the United States Forest Service.”

“To obtain a secondary teaching position in the southeast United States.”

“To work in law enforcement and pursue additional specialized training in forensics.”

How Do I Choose Elements?

  • For your written career objectives, choose at least one element but no more than three or your objective may be too lengthy.
  • You may want to have different career objectives for different career options you are considering.
  • The key is using elements that match up with your short and long-term goals!

What Skills are Commonly Used in Career Objectives?