Interpreter Resume (A Detailed Resume Guide With Samples, Tips, and Templates)

Did you know that a qualified translator/interpreter can translate 250 words an hour, and if they're working full time, can translate about 520,000 words a year?

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If this is a career you’re interested in, then you’re in luck. One of the greatest advantages of this job is that you have many employment options. You can also work anywhere around the world, and in any field you desire.

However, just like in any other job, you need to detail your qualifications in an interpreter resume showing the hiring manager why you are the best person for the job. When you want to be known as the language guru, the recruiter expects your resume to be a masterpiece. This is a lot of pressure for any job seeker, which is why we are here to help.

Start by checking out our resume examples which have many tips that will guide you as you write your resume. This article will cover some of the most crucial topics you need to know to help you craft a professional resume. They include:

  • The most sought-after skills on every interpreter’s resume.
  • The format and layout you should choose for your resume.
  • An interpreter resume sample with all the details you should have on your resume.
  • How to add your professional experience as an interpreter.

Interpreter Resume Example

Glen Smith
Freelance Interpreter

673-292-997
glensmith@gmail.com
Green Bay, WI
linkedin.com/in/glensmith

Professional summary
Certified Interpreter with seven years of experience offering translation services in the medical field specializing in Spanish and Italian. Excels at conveying emotion, style, and content to Spanish-speaking patients. Able to convey the cultural differences in the context of phrases. Seeking a medical interpreter position at Medispek Hospital.

Work experience
Sollatek Hospital
Medical Interpreter
March 2018-July 2020

  • Conducted negotiations to resolve disagreements among the medical staff and assisted in scheduling appointments for customers who didn’t speak English.
  • Translated documents to health care professionals to facilitate effective communication between them and the patients.
  • Interpreted discussions of subjects presented during sessions to facilitate communication by analyzing briefing materials provided.

Ascension Medical Center
Spanish Interpreter
January 2016-February 2018

  • Listened to and translated legal or medical material and wrote video subtitle scripts in the target language.
  • Used specialized dictionaries and thesauruses to determine accurate equivalent wording for highly technical terminology.
  • Reworded technical concepts into easy-to-understand English so that they could be translated by consulting experts and peers.

Education
Bachelor of Science in Translating and Interpreting
The University of Michigan
2015

Skills

  • Communication skills
  • Negotiation skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Time management skills
  • Quality assurance
  • Linguistic support
  • Electronic listening systems
  • Attention to detail

Additional section

Certification
ATA Certification

Job Prospects and Salary Range for Interpreters

According to the U.S Bureau of Statistics, the employment of interpreters and translators is projected to grow 24 percent from 2020 to 2030.

The industries with the highest levels of employment in Interpreters and Translators include:

  • Other Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
  • Elementary and Secondary Schools
  • General Medical and Surgical Hospitals
  • Local Government, excluding schools and hospitals(OEWS Designation)
  • Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools

The average salary for an interpreter is $48,000. The typical range is between $42,000 and $58,000, depending on your education, experience, and skills.

How to Write A Resume for An Interpreter

Interpreters are in high demand in the U.S, and this is one of the fastest-growing jobs. As we mentioned, this career allows you to work in different fields. The opportunities are endless, but an outstanding resume is still a necessity.

The hiring manager should be able to see that you have what it takes to perform your job efficiently. Your experience and skills in interpreting a foreign language for verbal and written communications should be presented appropriately in your resume.

Here are some areas you should consider as you craft your resume.

Check the Formatting And The Layout Of Your Resume

The format of your resume is crucial. You need to choose one that brings out your best qualifications. Here are three formats you can choose from.

  • Reverse-chronological format – This format is the most common one. It prioritizes your experience and is also a favorite of many hiring managers. This is the best format for you if you have experience working as an interpreter.
  • The functional resume format – This skills-based resume prioritizes your unique abilities. Recent graduates and career changers can use this format to showcase their qualifications.
  • Hybrid/combination resume format – This combines the best features of the two other formats. It’s perfect for you if you have the right combination of experience and skills.

The right layout is vital. You may have all the required qualifications, but if the presentation is wrong, you’ll miss out on the opportunity. Easy-to-read fonts like Arial, Calibri, Cambria, and Georgia are always the best to use, and a font size of 10-12pt.

The structure of your interpreter resume should have the following sections:

  • The resume header
  • Professional summary/ objective
  • Work experience section
  • Education section
  • Skills section
  • An additional section (languages, volunteer work, awards/honors interests, computer skills, and certifications)

Add a Header To Your Interpreter Resume

The header is the first section containing your contact and personal information. These details must be correct to make it easy for the recruiter to reach out to you if they need to. Here are the details you should add under this section.

  • Your full name
  • Job title
  • Phone number
  • Professional email address
  • Location
  • A link to your LinkedIn profile

A good header

CORRECT
Patrick Martin
Interpreter

725-098-228
patrickmartin@gmail.com
Corpus Christi, TX
linkedin.com/in/patrickmartin

A bad header

INCORRECT
Patrick Martin
Interpreter

725-098-228
patrickmartin@gmail.com
1664 Washington Street
House number 29
Corpus Christi, TX
Date of birth 02/01/2002
linkedin.com/in/patrickmartin

📌Your header should only have the relevant personal details. Avoid adding too many details that the recruiter doesn’t require.

Impress The Recruiter With Your Work Experience Section

Your work history plays a significant role in convincing the recruiter you’re the right person for the job. Every interpreter job will be different, so it’s essential to check the job description and tailor your resume accordingly.

A great advantage of this career is its diversity. Unlike most other professions, you can add experience that is not directly related to the job you’re applying for. This helps to show your potential employer that you are an expert and you’ve been able to get work constantly.

You’ll add the name of the workplace, your job title, and the employment dates. The job duties should adequately highlight your achievements and the results you’ve been able to achieve in your career.  The right keywords and action verbs are also essential  and will help your resume get past the ATS systems.

Example for an Entry-level Interpreter Resume

Miller Company
Interpreter
March 2018-June 2021
  • At the direction of the company’s attorneys, prepared legal documents and provided language services, translating one written language to another.
  • Reworded technical terms into easy-to-understand language so that they could be translated by consulting experts for the intended audience.
  • Interpreted discussions of subjects presented during sessions by analyzing the written materials provided.

Example for Experienced Interpreters

MMS Limited
Interpreter
January 2016-December 2020
  • Resolved customer concerns, developed satisfactory solutions and provided exceptional interpreting services to new and long-standing clients.
  • Communicated with customers and retailers using sign language, facilitating communication and ensuring they received their orders.
  • Provided translation services for six team members to communicate with Spanish-speaking customers and translate messages simultaneously.

The Educational Background For Your Interpreter’s Resume

The education section for an interpreter is crucial. Most interpreter jobs require a bachelor’s degree in languages or translation and interpretation. The job description will guide you in understanding the qualifications the recruiter is looking for.

If you have a master’s or Ph.D., you’ll have a better chance of getting the job, especially if your competitors only have a bachelor’s degree. Start with the most recent qualification and go backward.

The details you should have under this section include:

  • The name of the degree/diploma
  • The name of the school
  • The year of graduation

Correct example

Bachelor’s Degree in Translation and Interpreting
Kent State University
2017

Create A List of Interpreter’s Skills In Your Resume

The right skills on your interpreter resume always put you ahead of the competition. Most hiring managers use the skills section to determine which candidates will go to the next stage of the recruitment process. They use applicant tracking systems which filter out the resumes that don’t have the required skills.

 Your resume should have a section with hard and soft skills . Hard skills always take some time to learn, and you can learn on the job or at school. Soft skills are your interpersonal traits that make it possible to interact well with colleagues and clients.

The correct wording is also crucial when you’re adding your skills. This ensures that your resume gets past the ATS systems. Using bullet points to list your skills is recommended to make it easy for the recruiter to see them. Scanning them on ATS systems also makes it easy.

Here are some of the skills you should consider for your resume.

Hard skills

  • American Sign Language
  • Cultural Awareness
  • Analysis and Research
  • Simultaneous Interpretations
  • Oral translation
  • Cross-cultural communication
  • Account Management
  • Cultural Intelligence

Soft skills

  • Decision-making
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Multi-tasking skills
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Great relationship-building skills
  • Communication skills
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Time management

Write A Compelling Professional Summary

A professional or resume summary is an important section of your resume that determines whether the recruiter reads your resume or not. It should be short and engaging to keep the hiring manager reading. This section introduces your resume by highlighting your top achievements, skills, and experience.

Correct example

CORRECT
Talented Interpreter with expertise in Spanish and English. Ten years of experience providing medical interpretation services in various environments, including conferences and exhibitions. Committed to learning idiomatic cultural expressions and improving vocabulary skills to assist clients and ensure accurate communication.
💡The example above describes the candidate’s experience and showcases the unique skills that make them the right candidate for the job.

Incorrect example

INCORRECT
Accomplished and ambitious Interpreter with experience in translating multiple languages.
💡The example above is vague and fails to describe the candidate’s skills and experience to give more insight into what they can do.

An Interpreter Resume Objective

A resume/professional objective describes the candidate’s career goals. This is also a chance for the candidate to express their interest in the job and show the recruiter how their education and skills have prepared them for the job. Always use an objective statement if you recently graduated or are a career changer and don’t have much experience.

Correct example

CORRECT
Dedicated Interpreter with a successful background in interpreting specified languages to facilitate effective communication. A tactical and inspiring team builder looking for an opportunity at Latham Clinic as a medical interpreter.
💡The example above expresses the candidate’s interest in the position and describes some skills that make the candidate unique.

Include An Additional Section In Your Resume To Set You Apart

Recruiters get hundreds and sometimes thousands of resumes. There is a high chance that most resumes have the same qualifications, so you must set yourself apart. You can do so by including an additional section in your resume. This section highlights your extra achievements and skills and ensures that the recruiter doesn’t miss them.

If you don’t know how to incorporate this section into your resume, consider a template that will help you structure the resume. Check out our professional resume templates, which will allow you to add all the sections you want for your resume to stand out.

Here are some of the sections you should consider for your resume.

Computing Skills & Certifications

 Interpreters need computer skills to operate computer-assisted translation software . It’s easy for your potential employer to miss this qualification on your resume if it’s in the general skills section. Add it to this section to ensure they don’t miss it.

Certifications boost your resume and should have their own section. This makes it easier to spot them on your resume. Here are some certifications that will make your interpreter resume stand out.

  • American Translators Association(ATA)
  • American Sign Language(ASL) Interpreter Certification
  • Court Interpreter Certification

Languages

As an interpreter, this is an essential part of your resume. You must highlight your language skills under this section to ensure that the recruiter doesn’t miss them. Using the official language reference when listing your languages is always advisable. Here are some examples.

  • SIELE(Spanish) – Level C2
  • IELTS(English) – 7.0 score)
  • Goethe Zertifikat – 85%

Interests

Recruiters love an all-rounded candidate. Your interests play a significant role in showing them that you are all-rounded. It also gives them insight into who you are outside of work. Always do a bit of research on the organization you want to join before adding your interests.

Tips To Help You Enhance Your Resume

  • Your resume should not be too long. The recommended length is one page.
  • The right keywords and action verbs make a significant difference to your resume and allow your resume to get past the ATS systems.
  • The job description is a good guide when you want to determine what you should add to your resume.
  • Each job title should be different, and always avoid using one title for multiple applications.
  • The relevant experience should always go first on your resume.

Summary: Writing a Professional Resume as an Interpreter

  • Start your resume with a header and proofread the section to ensure that your contact information is correct.
  • The work experience section summarizes your employment history.
  • The correct format and layout determines whether the recruiter reads the resume or not.
  • Highlight your academic qualifications in the education section.
  • The right skills on your resume may help you get past the ATS systems.
  • Using bullet points to list your skills makes it easy for the recruiter to see them.
  • Have an additional section with the skills and qualifications you don’t want your potential employer to miss.

Complement Your Interpreter Resume With A Cover Letter

A cover letter is a document that gives more details about your qualifications. A complete application should always have a resume and a cover letter. It’s also an excellent opportunity to showcase your writing skills and extraordinary personality as you describe your achievements. There are a few instances where the recruiter will ask you not to send a cover letter. If that’s the case, you don’t need to send one. Otherwise, always accompany your resume with a cover letter. Here are some cover letter examples to help you out.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which top companies are hiring interpreters?

According to Glassdoor, the companies hiring interpreter jobs include:

  • LanguageLine Solutions
  • Cyracom International
  • TransPerfect
  • Lionbridge
  • Stratus Video
  • Freelancer
  • Sorenson Communications
  • Day Translations

Which industries need interpreting services?

  • Legal profession
  • Banking and finance
  • Insurance industry
  • Training and consulting
  • Entertainment industry
  • Healthcare industry

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