Linux System Administrator Résumé: When Writing, Focus on Results

Writing a Linux system administrator résumé? Keep one big thing in mind: results.

Any recruiter or hiring manager scanning your résumé will want to know if you can keep systems running, so it’s key that you weave in as many statistics as possible. For example, in your last position, did you increase network uptime and system availability by 90 percent? Place a number like that front-and-center in your “Experience” section.

In addition to data about uptime and system availability, include anything positive about response time, security-breach reduction, and data recoverability. Recruiters and hiring managers are looking for things like, “Improved response time to technical issues by 25 percent.”

Some companies may forbid you from including such information on your Linux system administrator résumé, of course, arguing that it’s confidential data. If that’s the case, you can exclude the data and still make your point about your performance (“Improved response time to technical issues by a significant percentage”). The goal is to show that your performance had a measurable impact on the operations of your former employers.

Many companies are also interested in automating as much system administration as possible. If you’ve integrated any kind of automation into the platforms at your previous jobs and projects, make sure to include it, even if it’s a simple one-liner like: “Automated administration tasks through use of scripting.” If you have the space (remember, you’re trying to keep things to one page), you can go into a bit more detail about the tools and platforms you actually used to automate.

And of course, don’t forget to list as many Linux-related skills as possible, especially those platforms that dominate the market. Are you a master at Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), for example? Place that at the very top, particularly if you’re applying for a job at a huge company. (And if you’re tight for space, consider deleting any legacy programs, even if they have a significant business presence; you can always explain your skillset in further detail during an actual interview).

If you need a starting template for a Linux system administrator résumé, take a look at this sample résumé in the Dice database. And if you’re looking for more reasons to work with Linux as a platform, check out our developers’ breakdown of why some might prefer Linux or Mac or Windows.