Your resume is the first thing hiring managers and recruiters look at when looking to fill open positions, and since they see so many a day, they rarely have the luxury of spending a lot of time on each resume they receive. Instead, they glance over your resume, looking for key points that fit the position’s specific needs and then decide if you move on to the call back or trash pile. Knowing what a recruiter looks for in a resume can make all the difference if your resume goes in trash or not, and knowing what NOT to include can also be very beneficial.
Think of your resume as a branding document, depicting who you are and what you are capable of doing. Of course you want to be as detailed as possible
, but you also don’t want to over share. And you don’t want your resume to seem dated or too formal (which is how resumes were written in the past). These days, recruiters look for qualified candidates that stand out from the crowd
and your resume is what they’ll judge you on.
So if you want your resume to make it to the call back pile, here are a few things not to include on your resume right now:
Your resume is a branding document and not a legal one, so you should never include personal information like your social security number, driver’s license number or the like. You also don’t need to put down things like your race, religion, weight, height, martial or parental status, political affiliation, race or anything like that. Never put down any banking or financial information either. You should include your address, telephone and email address, with social media channels optional.
A resume is a word document so unless you’re a creative applying for a job that entails design, art or the like, skip your photo! They’ll see what you look like if you get called in for an interview.
Past or present salary
Some people make the mistake of putting down their past or present salary. Don’t put anything down, but if they do ask for a salary history, simply give them a salary requirement instead. Potential employers don’t need your current salary and a range will do just fine.
In the past, resumes would state an objective right at the top. However, this isn’t needed anymore. It’s already obvious you would like the job since you applied. However, you should include one if you are changing industries completely, with that brief summary used to explain why the sudden change.
More than one phone number
If you have a landline, cell phone and office phone, just put down the one that you use the most. But really, it should be your mobile phone since you control who answers it and the voice message is tailored especially for you.
Some people like to include hobbies at the end of their resume, but in most cases, no one really care, especially if it’s not relevant for the job you’re applying for. However, there is an exception if your hobby makes you stand out from the crowd by providing more industry knowledge, insight or fellow demonstrates your skills. Just don’t put down what you like to do on your free time like gardening or rock climbing.
If the job requires a list of references, they’ll ask you for them. Otherwise, you don’t need to include them in your resume. And don’t write “references upon request” way at the bottom unless you want to waste valuable text space that you can use to further explain your work experience.
Long paragraphs with no bullets
You want to make it easier for recruiters to glance at, so make sure that you use bullet points instead of long paragraphs filled with text. If you don’t use bullet points to highlight your qualifications, recruiters might not be able to read them and your resume will be dumped in the trash.
General descriptions without reference of value
Recruiters don’t want to read your job description so skip general descriptions and instead detail how you added value to the company. They really care about your personal skills and assets and how they helped you achieve real results.
You want to come across as having the right qualifications for a position, so you don’t want to waste time by putting down irrelevant experiences, especially if they were from your distant working past.
Phrases using “duties” or “responsibilities”
These phrases are simply a job description and you want to show what you accomplished in the position instead of what you were supposed to do on the job.
Every phrase you use in the text of your resume should reflect a skill or accomplishment so skip empty language like the words “outstanding,” “exquisite” or “interesting.”
The way you format your resume is just as important as the text, so you want to make sure the format is consistent. And once you choose a format, stick with it for the rest of the resume.
Shy away from using personal pronouns in your resume like “I”, “me,” or “my” and instead go with statements that show action, skill or accomplishment to engage the recruiter.
Misspellings and grammatical errors
Nothing will put off a recruiter than seeing grammatical errors and/or misspellings on your resume, so you want to make sure you proofread it before sending it in (and maybe have another set of eyes look over it, too).
Once you’ve perfected your resume, subscribe to Talentwolf
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