Worsts Mistakes to Avoid on Your Resume
Hiring managers have neither the time nor resources to closely review each and every one of the dozens – sometimes hundreds – of resumes they receive for any given opening. Studies have shown that they spend roughly six seconds to decide whether a resume makes the pile for potential candidates or gets tossed in the trash. Therefore, if you want to make the first cut, your resume should stick out, but make sure it’s not sticking out in all the wrong ways.
Avoid these seven worst, yet surprisingly common, resume problems to give yourself a better chance at landing that next job:
Avoid These 7 Resume Mistakes
1. Typos – You may be the perfect person for the job, but if you have a significant amount of typos in your resume, kiss your chances goodbye. First appearances say a lot, especially in the professional world, and nothing says “carelessness” like a bunch of typos.
2. Length – Some people may say that two to three pages is key, while others may say that one page is enough. In our opinion, there is no magic number. As long as your resume clearly and concisely demonstrates your qualifications for the job, then you are sure to make a good impression on the hiring manager, no matter what the length. Most hiring managers can tell what’s fluff straight away.
3. Funny Formatting – All too often, applicants try to dazzle hiring managers with fancy fonts and flashy designs. Unless you’re applying for a job related to design or visual arts, drop the theatrics and make your resume simple, traditional, and perfectly formatted. If you’re not comfortable with formatting, there are plenty of resume templates online you can use.
4. Confidential Information – Even if your previous (or current) employer did not enforce a strict confidentiality policy, it’s best to leave all potentially sensitive information about past consultancies, projects, and other work out of your resume. The last thing you want to do is inspire distrust in your potential employer.
5. Lie – Speaking of distrust, lies (big or small) will do nothing but set off red flags to the hiring manager, and understandably so. If you feel like your degree isn’t up to snuff, use creative positioning and crafting strategies to inject your resume with that needed “oomph.”
6. Time Off – Sure, that European backpacking trip you took a year ago was an eye-opening and educational experience, but what does it have to do with the job and why would the hiring manager care to read about it? Don’t bother wasting lines explaining any time you took off. It’s the work you’ve done that ultimately counts.
7. Salary Information – Don’t list your pay for past jobs or address your desired salary in a resume. This information is completely unnecessary and may send the wrong message. All of the space in your resume should be used to showcase your qualifications. You can always discuss salary later in the interview process.
This advice may seem like common sense, but employers see common mistakes like these on a far too regular basis. Make your resume super informative and squeaky clean, and you’ll be ahead of the competition.