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How do I list my occupation on my resume if I had no MOS in the guard and they put me in whatever spot they needed to fill?


AIMEE COOK Sheboygan, WI

How do I list my occupation on my resume of I had no most in the guard and they put me in whatever spot they needed to fill?

6 February 2022 12 replies Military to Civilian Transition



Thomas Walsh Manassas, VA

Greetings, you've received some good advice on how to transition military experience into what conveys well to HR screeners. I'd like to add a different approach, by suggesting you identify what you would like to do first. Then find some adverts for those types of positions looking for things that could be related to what you've already done. For example the position requires "analytical skills" and you daily had to gather/review information about ongoing activities, prioritize next steps and finally compare expected outcomes with actual outcomes. While the scale is important (activities at a platoon level vs activities at a brigade level), the fact you've performed the tasks required of the job is what's important to convey. I hope this makes sense & feel free to volley back with any questions. Take care & be safe!!! TCW


Timothy Bowman Laguna Niguel, CA

List the position you had based on the primary duties you performed. On a resume, you want to convert it to civilian equivalent language, so the MOS is less important. From there, describe your duties and list your accomplishments, noting supervision, leadership, initiatives, and successes.


Jason Nungesser Denver, CO

Hi Aimee,

Just list the Guard unit, times, and put "Manager" or your role, such as Platoon Sergeant. I think mine just says, "Leadership". Then I break the roles out to bullets based on what I'm applying to. Most civilian roles won't know what your MOS was anyway and most government jobs will try to pigeon hole you into those types of positions.


Michael Del Vecchio Killingworth, CT


Transition for me (in 1971) was tough due to the political environment. I was an electronics repair specialist, wanted to move on do I just put my rank and specialty on the resume . I decided that I would look for a job through my pre-military friends. I wanted to find something that would capitalize on my past experiences both pre military and in the Army. It did take a while, but I eventually linked up with a guy I knew in college. The approach that worked for me was to use a networking approach - Ask family or close friends if they know of a job or another lead. Work out from there - take a look at this write up for more info - If you want to talk, reply. Best of luck, stay safe.


Anthony Morvillo Far Hills, NJ

Hello SGT. Cook,

Thank you for your service in the Guard. The Guard is a vital component in the nation’s defense.

The approach I would recommend is the same as I have done on my own resume.

Though I was an MP I spent 12 years in the Army and the roles I served in were varied. And I was not looking for work in the Law Enforcement or Security fields.

Therefore, 1) I would list US Army National Guard as your employer. Underneath I would put the Years of service. 2) pull out any NCOERs and other evaluations and awards. Those are going to provide you with tremendously strong bullet points. 3) look at the career field/jobs your looking at and that’s what you will tailor your bullet points to. 4) focus on your leadership as an NCO. I can tell you that what I learned in PLDC/WLC and BNCOC and through experience was a lot of what I learned in my MBA program. 5) focus on bullet points from the above documents that quantify problem solving skills. Overcoming challenges. High caliber performance/attention to detail. If you have a security clearance list that. It shows trust with sensitive data and translates well to safeguarding customer data. If you were an armorer then focus on inventory control processes, inspections of equipment for functionality, safeguarding valuable and sensitive items. It’s more about skills than a particular job function. A job will often rather train a person who has demonstrated reliability responsibility diligence and the ability to learn than someone who’s just held a similar position because odds are they have to retrain that person to a degree to the way that organization does things.

Good luck.


Anne Crawford Swansea, MA

Thank you for your service. Many of my military clients are in the same boat as you are. Here is what I suggest for my clients. If possible, get your " boss" to explain what tasks he or her thought you were best at. Example: You were assigned to work in the warehouse with the transportation equipment, but your leaderships skills were outstanding, so I gave you a management position instead.
The next step is an in-depth look at what you enjoyed in the service. Your strengths and all the tasks you excelled at. Then google some of those words in a job title. This should produce job titles that you might relate to. The summary is the most important part of your resume and military soldiers have a tendency to just list all their responsibilities in several sentences, for their summary. You must mix your hard and soft skills in your summary to get through those tracking systems. Trust me, 90 % of employers hire you because of your soft skills. If you need help in figuring out what your soft skills are, please reach out to me and we can go over them.


Robert Schamis Berwyn, PA

After 20 years in the army, you will probably need to take a few months off to reacclimate yourself to civilian life. In the meantime, ask Google or Siri for the best employment opportunity sites. Look through the opportunities for what piques your interest. Then write your resume to match the job you want. Your varied experience in the army should be a plus to any position you set your mind on getting.
One suggestion: Always call your prospective employer before sending your resume. It gets better results.


john holmes Los Angeles, CA


Potential employers simply want to see your varied experiences. Suggest you say (in your own words)
"Was given the following exciting opportunities---
. "


James Vickery Ogden, UT

Hello Aimee,

Thank you for your service to our country - and welcome to the joys and frustrations of Veteran life.

Translating your military service to 'civilian-speak' can be very challenging, but is a worthwhile effort and necessary. Focus on the 'action-impact-result' (AIR) of what you did in the service. While service members cannot show how they 'made money' for the government (that is illegal and will readily be seen through by potential employers), you can still demonstrate, no matter the duty title, position or rank, that you were a leader of people, a manager of resources and were successful at both.

You can describe time savings through improved processes, better training through resources and methods, or personnel efficiencies and enhancements via training, time and process improvements. Another aspect I learned is to use $, %, increase and decrease in each job descriptor at least once if possible. This is another challenge but is attention-grabbing.

I have a good resume template I have used with success for others if you are interested. Message me on LinkedIn and we can discuss.



Matt Johnson Chicago, IL

I would echo Jerry above when applying to a specific role but start first formulating a larger “Master Resume”. List out all your roles by billet with time served in each, then create your bullets:
- Action verb (conveying a skill) + Situation or task (conveying your responsibilities and scale for context) + Impact or result (ideally translating to a dollar figure and posing against a benchmark such as historical performance, ranking if possible to let the reader see that you were actually good at your job)

Once you have this long form master resume, begin whittling it down for each new role, selecting the soft skills, hard skills, and tasks that are either directly applicable or where you can draw I parallel. For example, “well I didn’t do x but I did y - which is close is x.” You’ll lean hard on statements like these.

One note is that most service-run transition programs always seems to use the federal resume format but that’s longer than is acceptance anywhere else. Try to keep it to 1 page for every 10 years of experience and keep it up easy to read. Arial or Calibri font size 10/12 is perfect.


ACP AdvisorNet Staff New York, NY

Hi Aimee,

Thank you for using ACP AdvisorNet for your question. I recommend taking a look at the following website: and utilizing the third search box to find careers like your military job.

I further recommend taking a look at this website: about MOS and how to translate your ratings code to a civilian occupation.

I hope this was helpful and please let me know if you would like more resources. Thank you for your service.

All the best,


Jerry Welsh Middleville, MI

The first question is what career are you going after in the private sector? After you determine that find out all you can about that career via Informational Interviews and other research. By the time you know that new career you will be able to take your different roles and skills from the Guard and provide examples for the position you are applying to. Every resume needs to match the exact job you apply for. Thanks for you service.

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