It is very easy to make mistakes on the resume and exceptionally difficult to fix the damage once an employer gets it. As a result prevention is critical, whether you are writing the first resume or revising it for a mid-career job search. Explore this resume guide to the most common pitfalls and how you can avoid them.
1. Typos and Grammatical Errors
Your resume requests to be grammatically perfect. If it isn't, employers would read between lines and draw not-so-flattering conclusions about you, like: "This person cannot write," or "This person obviously doesn't care."
2. Lack of Specifics
Employers require understanding what you have completed and accomplished. For instance:
A. Worked with employees in a restaurant setting.
B. Hired, Recruited trained and supervised more than twenty employees in a restaurant with $2 million in annual sales.
Both of these phrases could explain the same person, other than the details and specifics in example B will more probable grab an employer's attention.
3. Attempting One Size Fits All
When you try to expand a one-size-fits-all resume to send to all employers, you approximately always end up with something employers would toss in the recycle bin. Employers want to write a resume especially for them. They expect you to clearly illustrate how and why you fit the position in a specific organization.
4. Highlighting Duties Instead of Accomplishments
It's easy to slip into a mode where you simply start listing job duties on your resume. For example:
>>Attended group meetings and recorded minutes.
>>Worked with children in a day-care setting.
>> Updated departmental files.
>>Employers, though, don't care so much about what you've done as what you've accomplished in your various activities. They are looking for statements more like these.
>>Used laptop computer to record weekly meeting minutes and compiled them in a Microsoft Word-based file for future organizational reference.
>> Developed three daily activities for preschool-age children and prepared them for a 10-minute holiday program performance.
>>Reorganized 10 years worth of unwieldy files, making them simply accessible to department members.
5. Going on Too Long or Cutting Things Too Short
Despite what you may read or hear, there are no real rules governing resume length. Why? Since human beings who have different preferences and opportunities where resumes are concerned would be reading it.
That doesn't mean you should start sending out five-page resumes, of course. Usually speaking, you usually need to limit yourself to an utmost of two pages. But don't feel you have to use two pages if one will do. Conversely, don't cut the meat out of your resume simply to make it conform to an arbitrary one-page standard.
6. A Bad Objective
Employers do read the resume objective, but too often they plot throughout unclear pufferies like, "Seeking a challenging position that offers professional growth." Give employers something specific and, more significantly, something that focuses on their needs in addition to your own. Case: "A challenging entry-level marketing position that allows me to contribute my skills and experience in fund-raising for nonprofits."
7. No Action Verbs
Keep away from using phrases like "responsible for." in its place, use action verbs: "Resolved user questions as part of an IT help desk serving 4,000 students and staff."
8. Leaving Off Important Information
You might be tempted, for instance, to eliminate mention of the jobs you have taken to earn extra money for school. Typically, though, the soft skills you've gained from these experiences (for example work ethic, time management) are more important to employers than you may think.
9. Visually Too Busy
If the resume is wall-to-wall text featuring five different fonts, it would most probable give the employer a headache. So illustrate your resume to several other people before sending it out. Do they find it visually attractive? If what you have is hard on the eyes, change.
10. Incorrect Contact Information
I one time worked with a student whose resume seem incredibly strong, other than he wasn't getting any bites from employers. So one day, I jokingly asked him if the phone number he'd listed on his resume was correct. It wasn't. Just the once he changed it, he started getting the calls he'd been expecting. Moral of the story is that ensure even the most minute taken-for-granted details sooner rather than later.