How To Write a Translator Resume
To write an eye-catching translator resume, emphasize your vast knowledge of languages and ability to facilitate intercultural communication. Highlight your experience working with various teams and clients across diverse backgrounds. Feature your knowledge of translation software, editing, and customer service. Learn how to translate your career into an accomplishment-driven resume in this guide.
1. Write a dynamic profile summarizing your translator qualifications
The profile section is a three to four-sentence summary of your experience and skills. For translators, this should include the languages you are fluent in and other key skills. For example, hiring managers often look for candidates who can deal professionally with clients and proofread other team members’ work.
Any specific translation experience, such as in the medical field or legal fields, should also be listed here. Translating everyday speech is much different than explaining medical procedures to patients, and providing this context up-front can help a hiring manager evaluate whether you’re a good fit.
Senior-Level Profile Example
An international Translator with 10+ years of experience, specializing in linguistics, Arabic, diplomatic relations, and intercultural communication. A proven track record of providing language services as an interpreter for U.S. embassies and foreign diplomats. Adept at driving understanding across languages to bridge cultural divides.
Entry-Level Profile Example
A certified Translator with three years of experience, specializing in linguistics, translation, language services, and client relations. A strong background in providing Spanish language translations for non-profit organizations. Adept at navigating cultural nuances and language barriers to support clients in communicating with medical professionals.
2. Add your translator experience with compelling examples
The professional experience section is where you get to go into more detail about your translation work and what makes you a good candidate for this role. Focus on the benefits and value you’ve provided in previous positions, and be as specific as possible. For example, saying you “served as an interpreter for Middle Eastern diplomats” is much more impressive than stating you “worked as an Arabic to English translator.”
Senior-Level Professional Experience Example
October 2014 – Present
- Serve as an interpreter for U.S. diplomats and ambassadors from various countries in the Middle East, including Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt
- Attend diplomatic meetings with UN teams and foreign representatives to translate English into Arabic for foreign representatives
- Ensure accurate translation of English based on regional dialects and language nuances
- Translated, proofread, and edited memos and documentation in Arabic for foreign ambassadors, including proposals to foster international relations
Entry-Level Professional Experience Example
May 2019 – Present
- Serve as an interpreter for physicians and patients with limited English language skills, which includes translating medical diagnosis, terminology, and treatment plans into Spanish and resolving intercultural communication issues
- Coordinate with the medical team to create pamphlets and medical education materials for Spanish speaking patients
- Translated updates from the physician on patient condition following surgical procedures during discussions with family members and guardians
3. Include your translation education and certifications
While you don’t always need an advanced degree or certifications to work as a translator, having official credentials can make you a more attractive candidate. And it may be required for high-level or government positions within the industry.
List your education in its own section on your resume, followed by any certifications you hold. Any language certification from the American Translators Association (ATA) holds high value in the industry and should also be included in your profile.
- [Degree Name]
- [School Name], [City, State Abbreviation] | [Graduation Year]
- Master of Arts (M.A.) Arabic
- University Of Columbia, New York, NY | 2011
- [Certification Name], [Awarding Organization], [Completion Year]
- ATA Certified Translator, English into Arabic, 2011
4. Include a list of your translator skills and proficiencies
A key skills list on your resume can make it easier for hiring managers to see if you have the qualifications they’re looking for. This list should include the languages you can translate, including whether you have native-level fluency or advanced proficiency.
If you have more than two languages, consider breaking up the skills list into one that includes just languages and another that focuses on nonlanguage skills. The second list would include things like cultural awareness, customer service, and translation software. This list includes other common suggestions:
|Key Skills and Proficiencies
|Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI)
|English as a Second Language (ESL)
How To Pick the Best Translator Resume Template
Templates can provide a framework that makes creating an engaging, well-formatted resume easier. A template should focus on your skills and qualifications, so avoid anything too distracting, such as bright colors or difficult-to-read fonts.
Instead, choose a simple style with basic formatting like bolding and bullets to break up and organize text. If you’re applying for an international job, consider cultural differences, such as unlucky colors or word choices, that could come into play.
Translator Text-Only Resume Templates and Examples
123 Your Street, San Francisco, CA 12345
An ATA-Certified Translator with seven years of experience, specializing in linguistics, translation, localization, and Mandarin. A proven history of collaborating with diverse teams to execute localization projects for mobile gaming products. Adept at refining and adapting content into Mandarin for target audiences.
Translator, Starlight Mobile Games., San Francisco, CA
May 2016 – Present
- Collaborate with the localization and development teams to translate menus, dialogue, in-game text, and product marketing materials from English to support the launch of a $5M mobile strategy game within the Chinese market
- Leverage knowledge of linguistics, English, and Mandarin to proofread copy and provide recommendations to refine the quality of translation for Chinese audiences
- Ensure alignment of translation with original authorial intent and resolve discrepancies and translation errors throughout the localization process
Translator, West Coast Gaming, San Francisco, CA
July 2014 – May 2016
- Translated text, dialogue, content, and in-game assets for the release of a mobile farming simulator in China, which generated over 500K downloads with three months of launch
- Collaborated with a team of translators to execute localization projects for product release, which included editing translations to improve readability and content quality
- Interfaced with stakeholders and project teams to ensure quality control
Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Linguistics
University of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA September 2010 – May 2014
- Mandarin (Native)
- Translation Services
- ATA Certified Translator, English into Mandarin, 2020
Frequently Asked Questions: Translator Resume Examples and Advice
What are common action verbs for translator resumes?-
Do you keep getting stuck on “translated” and “interpreted” when you’re writing your professional experience bullets? It’s challenging — but important — to ensure your word choice is varied and that your language is specific and representative of your skills. Remember verbs that convey your soft skills, such as “collaborated” or “liaised.”
We’ve provided a starter list of common action verbs that can be used for translator resumes below, but the job description can often give you even more options.
How do you align your resume with a job description?-
Translators are important to many sectors, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics expects average growth in the industry overall through 2032. But today’s hiring managers often sift through hundreds of applicants, so your resume needs to stand out.
One way to do this is to align your resume with each job you apply for. Note the main job duties of the position and the language the hiring manager uses to describe them, and see if you can tweak your resume to match.
For example, if a position states a candidate should have experience with marketing copy and English to Chinese translations, highlight your Mandarin fluency and experience translating product marketing materials for video game companies.
What is the best translator resume format?-
When applying for a translator position, two things are important to highlight: your language fluency and professional translation experience. The reverse chronological format is generally the best format to achieve this.
It focuses on your professional experience, listing your positions from the most recent and going backward in time. It also has room for a key skills list, your education, and any certifications and other credentials. If you’re applying for an entry-level position, a combination format can show hiring managers you have the fluency and skills to succeed even without a lengthy work history.
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Once you’re satisfied with your resume, it’s time to move on to the cover letter. This document expands on the points in your resume and lets you demonstrate your enthusiasm for the position. Consider including the same cover letter in another language to provide a real-life example of your translation skills. If you need help writing a cover letter, we’ve compiled a comprehensive resource with tips and examples.