In such a competitive job market, it’s an important time to polish your resume. Your resume is often the first chance you have to make a great impression on a potential employer, which is why it is so important to craft your resume to showcase your qualifications for the job. However, if your resume is filled with the following mistakes, your job prospects could be doomed.
Bad Grammar and Spelling
If you want a professional job, write like a professional. In the age of online grammar checkers and spelling programs, there isn’t an excuse for misspellings or typos. Whether you’re applying for an entry-level job or an executive position, being able to communicate effectively and showcase your readiness and professionalism for a job is key. Incorrect punctuation, formatting, spelling, and grammar mistakes could demonstrate a lack of effort to potential employers. Run your resume through spelling and grammar checkers, and have a friend give it a read-through to help ensure your success.
Incomplete, Irrelevant, or Outdated Information
Accuracy is imperative in any employment situation. Make sure all dates, job experience, and references are updated with accurate and honest information. Make sure that you include working phone numbers for your references and any other valid methods of contact. Update your resume regularly, and only include work experience and training that is relevant to the specific job you are applying for.
Missing or Unnecessary Contact Information
The first thing the hiring manager should see at the very top of your resume is your name in big, bold letters, your address to let the hiring manager know where you are based, your personal email address, as well as your phone number. In some cases, it may be appropriate for you to include a link to your website or portfolio, but anything else would be a waste of space.
It’s illegal for employers to ask personal questions about age or marital status. Previously, employers might have asked these types of personal questions, but such is not the case anymore. On the flip side, it’s also inappropriate for you to add such information to your resume. You should use the valuable space on your resume to include information to help the employer see how suited you are for the position.
Being Too Vague or Too Wordy
Whenever you try to develop a generic resume to send to all job ads, you almost end up with something employers are uninterested in reading. If your resume’s length is more than one page, chances are that it will end up in the wastebasket.
It is important to be concise and to the point, while also including all the necessary information. Employers want to feel special and want you to write a resume specifically for them. They expect you to clearly show how and why you are the perfect fit for the position in their specific organization. You should clearly state your qualifications and experience without adding too much additional information or details.
A black and white resume with clear headings and spacing will stand out better than a colorful resume with excessive designs and unnecessary formatting.
Using Inflated Language
Self-aggrandizement is also not encouraged. If you’ve accomplished something, state it plainly without hyperbole or exaggerating your achievements while maintaining the assumption that all of your information will be checked.
Omitting Skill Sets and Keywords
Many managers will look for certain keywords or skill sets when looking through their applicant pool. Read the job description you are interested in clearly, and use words and phrases that highlight your suitability for that specific job. Take some time to think about your strengths, weaknesses, and goals. Keep in mind who your competition is and what unique skills you have that might set you apart.
The average hiring manager looks at a resume for approximately six seconds before deciding whether to pass or not. There are plenty of pitfalls to avoid when writing a resume, so when you finally have it in good shape, you may want to get it reviewed to be sure it’s ready for your potential employers to see.