How to Use an Addendum on Your Résumé (10 Tips & Example)

It can really make all the difference.

Reviewed by Electra Michaelidou

Resume Addendum

Everybody, meet the addendum: the résumé’s little-known cousin.



If you’ve never heard of an addendum before, I won’t blame you. Unlike a professional résumé or a cover letter, for example, which are instantly recognizable and have a widely understood purpose in the job application process, the addendum is a bit of a mystery.

But this guide aims to take the mystery out of addenda. We’ll learn what they are, when to use them, and how to put one together. Plus, we’ll show you an addendum example in action.

What is an addendum?

An addendum, Latin for “give toward”, is a supplementary document in your job application package that’s intended to complement your résumé.

It typically includes additional information that supports your qualifications and achievements, which are the main focus of your résumé. These include certifications, training programs, publications, presentations, languages, projects, awards and volunteer work, which are listed much like the content of a résumé.

It’s also sometimes used to address specific concerns, like employment gaps or career breaks.

Should you use an addendum?

There’s no hard-and-fast rule about addenda, and using one is really a matter of personal choice.

That said, it can be particularly useful if you have a lot of relevant information that you want employers to know about, but which you don’t have a lot of room for in your résumé. If you do have space in your résumé for all this extra information, though, then you can forego the addendum entirely.

Meanwhile, addenda aren’t very common, and many recruiters aren’t even familiar with them or, indeed, their purpose. Having said that, when done right, it becomes clear even to the uninitiated hiring manager that an addendum is meant to support your résumé and overall job application.

When to use an addendum

It’s not really a matter of whether you should use an addendum but, rather, when to use one. In fact, the following situations most definitely require one:

You have extensive work history

Your résumé should feature only your most relevant work experience from the last 10–15 years. If you have any notable experience beyond this timeframe, it’s better to list these jobs in an addendum rather than expand your résumé any more than necessary.

This is particularly useful if you want to do some name-dropping (ie: you worked for a highly prestigious company) or the job you’re applying for requires many years of experience in the field.

You have specialized skills or qualifications

As you progress in your career, you’re bound to develop your knowledge, gain new skills and achieve new accomplishments. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to feature everything on your résumé, as you’ll likely end up with a 10-page document.

Instead, you can feature all this extra information in an addendum, where you can freely showcase any specialized training programs you took and expand on your technical skill set.

Your résumé is too long

One of the golden rules of writing a résumé is to keep it to between one and two pages, depending on your level and substance of professional experience (although there are some exceptions to this rule).

If your résumé stretches over the typical two-page cut-off point, you’ll need to cut it down. This is where an addendum comes in, as it helps you move pertinent information to a separate document rather than remove it entirely.

10 tips for creating an addendum

Now that we’ve got all the technical stuff out the way, it’s time to get down to actually putting your addendum together.

1. Choose your focus

As you set out to create an addendum, decide on the focus you want it to take.

Do you want to expand on a specific aspect of your professional background? Or would you benefit from providing a more general overview of your professional development experiences?

The more you zero in on what exactly you want employers to know about you and your professional journey (that you otherwise weren’t able to in your résumé), the easier you’ll find the actual writing process.

2. Use clear headings

Like your résumé, your addendum should use concise and descriptive headings to organize information into clearly defined sections, such as:

This helps hiring managers quickly find the information they’re looking for. It also shows that you’ve taken the time to carefully organize your information and that you value clarity and professionalism.

3. Don’t make it too long

While the addendum allows for more information, it’s essential to strike a balance. The last thing you want to do is overwhelm the reader with excessive details. Instead, focus on quality over quantity.

As a general rule of thumb, keep your addendum to one page. You can, however, use a second or third page — if absolutely necessary — but the shorter, the better.

Then again, there is a thing as too short. If your addendum is only about half a page long, then try expanding on it (without fluffing things). Otherwise, forego the addendum entirely and, instead, work all the information you want to highlight into your main résumé.

4. Write concise descriptions

On that note, you want to keep your addendum’s descriptions concise, which is crucial for clarity and impact.

Generally speaking, descriptions should be about 1–2 lines long, while it’s important to aim for a balance between conciseness and informativeness to efficiently grab the reader’s attention.

To achieve this kind of brevity, focus on your key accomplishments, use action verbs and eliminate any unnecessary details. Also, prioritize relevance to the prospective role, and quantify achievements when possible — just as you would for your résumé.

5. Tailor it to the job

All the information you include in your addendum must be directly relevant to the job you’re applying for. This ensures your application passes through applicant tracking systems and catches the attention of recruiters.

Do this by carefully reviewing the job description, and identifying key skills and requirements. Then, try to weave these into your addendum in a way that integrates your achievements with the company’s objectives.

And remember: avoid including irrelevant information that may dilute the impact of your key qualifications.

6. Keep it separate from your résumé

While you could create a new page for your addendum’s content in the same document as your résumé, it’s better to create your addendum as a separate document. Remember: the addendum is a supplemental document to your résumé, and should always be treated as such.

This ensures that the focus of your résumé remains squarely on your experience, qualifications and achievements, and all the extra information doesn’t distract the reader — while still keeping it available for them if they need it.

Do remember to attach both documents to your application (along with your cover letter), though!

7. Don’t repeat your résumé

Ensure that the information in your addendum complements — not duplicates — the content of your résumé. Otherwise, there’s no need for a résumé addendum at all.

Avoid repeating details already mentioned, and instead use the addendum to provide additional context. For example, if you’ve listed “Project Management Tools” among your résumé’s skills section, you can use your addendum to mention the specific project management tools that you’re proficient in.

8. Don’t get personal

When it comes to personal information (like your date of birth, nationality and marital status), any reputable résumé writer will tell you to leave it off your résumé. And they’ll tell you the same thing for your addendum.

Remember: the addendum is a professional document.

The only times you should share personal information with potential employers are when it’s standard practice in the country you’re applying for jobs or if you’re in a creative field (like acting or modelling). And this is generally done in the main résumé, anyway.

9. Match your résumé’s design

An important, but often overlooked, part of the job search process is to create a consistent personal brand for yourself.

This begins with a uniform, instantly recognizable design across all your job search documents: résumés, cover letters, addenda, and everything in between. In other words, all your documents should feature the same fonts, color scheme, line spacing, and overall layout and formatting.

This way, hiring managers will know that the addendum and résumé they’re reading belong to the same person.

10. Proofread (and proofread again)

The last thing you want is an addendum filled with typos and grammar errors. After all, they only signal to the hiring manager that you lack an attention to detail, are careless and don’t really care about the job you’re applying for — which could result in instant rejection.

This is why it’s incredibly important to proofread your addendum (and résumé, cover letter and any other supporting documents) before submitting your application. Don’t just rely on your word processor’s spell check function, and ask a friend or relative to go over it too — often, they’ll be able to catch mistakes you missed and provide valuable feedback.

Résumé addendum example

Want to see an addendum in action? Check out this specially put-together example, crafted from one of our professionally designed templates:

Resume Addendum Example

Get the ATS-Friendly Template

Key takeaways

One final piece of advice I’d like to share with you is this: only use a résumé addendum if it makes sense to do so. If it doesn’t (or you have plenty of room in your résumé to communicate additional information, related experience or extra credentials to potential employers), just skip it entirely.

But before we go, let’s sum up what learned in this article:

  • An addendum is a document that complements your professional résumé.
  • It lists additional information that supports your qualifications and achievements.
  • You don’t always need one, but it can be a nice little touch to your application — especially if you have a lot of pertinent information that you couldn’t find room for in your résumé.
  • If you choose to use an addendum, remember to keep it to one page and to tailor it to your target job.

Got a question about résumé addenda? Let us know in the comments section below.

Originally published on June 19, 2015.