7 Tips of Writing a Resume for Entertainment Industry Freelancers
1. List the projects you’ve worked on and your supervisor for each project
When recruiting freelancers, the hiring manager doesn’t expect to see a traditional resume. They are more interested in learning what projects you’ve worked on, however, there’s no need to list every one-off show you’ve been a stagehand for – choose the ones that best showcase the skills you’ll need to land the job you’re applying for. This may mean making a few different versions of your resume, depending on what type of gig you’re going for! You’ll also want to indicate your supervisor for each project. Listing the lighting designer on the project is also a good idea, however, there’s no need to list all the artists from a festival you worked on.
2. Indicate the size and scope of work for each project
The hiring manager needs to know what you can handle. Did you lead a crew? If so, how large was the crew? What gear did you install and how many? What were the parameters you worked within? How many universes were involved? These details let the hiring manager know what you are capable of. These details can be summed up quickly – leave out long descriptions.
3. Highlight your technical skills and any certifications you have
A traditional resume doesn’t focus on technical skills, but when you are applying for a freelancing gig, this is one of the most important things a hiring manager wants to know. List out current certifications you have as well as specific skills that are relevant to the project.
4. Write a freelancing summary instead of an objective
Objectives may be important for hiring managers who are looking for someone to make a long-term commitment, but when you’re freelancing, it’s more important to give them insight into your freelancing experience. Include details like how long you’ve been in the industry, how long you’ve been freelancing, why you choose to freelance over full-time work, and what type of projects you are interested in (corporate events, tours, festivals, etc.). This overview will encourage them to keep reading and gives them an idea of which projects you’d be a good match for.
5. List your professional references, not personal ones
Hiring managers don’t get the chance to give freelancers any on-the-job training. Your professional references are the only way that they’ll get information about your work ethic and performance before you’re on the ground running. Most hiring managers will call your references, especially if they know them. Make sure your references know that you’ve listed them, so they are prepared to give you a glowing review!
6. Keep it to one page
You might have enough experience to list multiple pages of experience and skills but keeping it to one page is a good rule of thumb for a few reasons. It helps you to refine your resume to fit the specific job you are applying for – you can remove skills, projects, or other employment that are irrelevant to the one you are applying for. It also makes sure your skills and experience are highlighted, making it an easier and faster read for the hiring manager to know that you’d be a good fit. And lastly, it tells the hiring manager that you can work within constraints – an important quality for any project you’d be working on.
7. Present your resume in a professional manner
In the event industry, we’re in the business of paying attention to detail. Your resume should look neat and organized at first glance. This will make it easier for the hiring manager to find the details they need to see if you’re a good fit. A few rules of thumb to make sure your resume looks professional include using consistent fonts, font sizes, indentations, and bullet points.