Finding good work ethic: What to look for in a resume

April 26, 2022

When it comes to choosing prospective warehouse workers for an interview, determining if an applicant is suitable for the job takes more than just checking a resume for the necessary qualifications and experience. Initially, these parameters are going to be pivotal in paring down your list to just the ones with the requisite skills. But to shortlist candidates further, looking for indicators of a good work ethic can help to cherry-pick individuals that best suit the ethos of your company.

According to Newman University, a good work ethic is one of the five main areas that employers should look for when recruiting. How, then, do you identify examples of a good work ethic when reviewing a resume?

Indicators of a good work ethic

Jobseekers are usually discouraged from stating outright that they have a strong work ethic. In fact, it's number six on Investopedia's list of ten things not to write on a resume. This means you will need to find examples where work ethic is implied or demonstrated, rather than mentioned directly.

Anecdotal examples of a worker's experience will yield useful information about their underlying work ethic. Here are some things to watch out for as positives in a resume or cover letter:


Especially important in a warehouse environment, any examples of high levels of concentration and resisting distractions will show that a candidate is dedicated to and takes pride in their work.

Discipline and organization

Quality timekeeping and being well organized show a good work ethic. Look out for examples that show their ability to focus and complete tasks on time.


Having clear personal and professional goals are strong indicators of an applicant's motivation to do a good job and work well with others in order to achieve those goals.


Recognizing any shortcomings and detailing ways in which they have worked on remedying them shows a level of self-realization worth paying attention to. Employees who take responsibility for their actions can be better trusted to work without oversight because they will come to you with issues, instead of overlooking or ignoring them.


Any signifiers of a worker being adept at prioritizing workloads to complete tasks in order of importance demonstrate that they are keen to do the best job possible and maintain a high level of output.


Staff who communicate well with their team want to ensure that everyone is on the same page, working together to achieve a common goal while appreciating that colleagues may approach the task from a different perspective.

Positive work ethic word search

Synonyms and the availability of online thesauruses means that resumes can use a huge range of terms and phrases to demonstrate the key work ethic examples you're looking for. So here's a list of a few of the strongest ones you're likely to come across:

  • Adaptable
  • Committed
  • Consistent
  • Cooperative
  • Enthusiastic
  • Meticulous
  • Reliable
  • Resourceful
  • Respectful
  • Self-motivated
  • Strategic

Finding and encouraging a good work ethic in your employees can help to reinforce company values and boost engagement. By looking out for these key qualities during the hiring process, you can increase your chances of introducing members to your team who will inject a new energy to the workplace.