Aside from the typical proofreading errors, there are five resume mistakes that hiring managers and recruiters commonly see while reviewing resumes.
1. Using a general resume.
It demonstrates apathy and an overall lack of motivation when you send out a generic resume and this is not the impression you want to send to your potential employer. You simply cannot use the same resume to apply to many different types of jobs and expect to win interviews. Your resume MUST be customized for each job you are targeting.
2. Irrelevant content.
If you are applying for an accounting position, don’t list your summer lifeguard job you held back in 1989. Spouses, children, hobbies, and your favorite movie genre are also irrelevant tidbits that should always remain private. None of this stuff matters, so play it safe and leave off any information that is not 100% relevant to your career goal.
3. Creative fonts.
Even if your choice looks nice on your computer, it may not look good on someone else’s system. I typically stick with Georgia, Arial, Verdana, or Times New Roman because these fonts are considered safe. If I were to use my cool Futurama Alien Font, it would most likely look all jumbled up on someone else’s system.
The exception is if you create a PDF file of your resume, but many employers will only accept it in Microsoft Word or plain text format.
4. Objective statement.
Your resume needs a clear goal, but the traditional objective statement is outdated. Hiring managers do not care that you want a “challenging position utilizing my experience and creativity…” because that is a self-serving statement. It doesn’t speak to an employer’s needs. Instead, try using a headline followed by a compelling summary of your relevant skills. This is a better way to present what you have to offer your potential employer.
5. Using a resume to replace a job application.
A resume is not a job application. The reason for leaving your last job, previous supervisors’ names, and salary history don’t belong on your resume. This is information can hurt you more than help you, so leave it off of your resume to be safe.
Also, if you have to fill out an application packet for an employer, do not write “see resume” in the form. Your application will likely be tossed immediately if you demonstrate this kind of laziness.
© Jennifer Anthony Nationally Published Resume Expert & Career Strategist
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org | Phone: 503-395-8877 | Web: http://www.jennanthony.info
Disclaimer: Advice offered in this article is not comprehensive and is intended for a wide-range of readers. Individual results may vary based on geographic location, local economies, market saturation for a particular industry, academic background, adaptability to workforce changes, and/or continued motivation. Contact a professional resume writer to discuss your unique situation.