Nothing tests a hiring manager’s patience more than those often seen résumé mistakes which, for just a little bit of time and attention on the writer’s part, could lower the reader’s stress level and further the candidate’s cause. Here are some of the most annoying résumé cringe factors that don’t seem to go away:
Always tell the truth. Even if you make it through the Applicant Tracking Software, aka ATS, there are other credibility check-points for dates of employment, job titles, and gaps, to name just a few. Use a cover letter, not a cover-up, to address in a positive way any job candidacy issues.
Buzzwords are business lingo with a short shelf-life. Knowing when they’re overused and outdated is key to crafting a compelling résumé. Be wary of terms like synergy, outside the box, game changer, guru, coopetition, wheelhouse, organic growth, leverage, visionary, growth hack, viral, blogosphere, paradigm shift, disruptive, heavy lifting, hit the ground running, and other outdated terms. Ordering an Adam and Eve on a raft in today’s modern diner will not get you two poached eggs on toast.
If you want to bypass the ATS altogether and go direct to the circular file then spell the hiring manager or recruiter’s name wrong. Nothing is more insulting to personal pride than having one’s name misspelled. Long before the modern trend of deliberately altering the conventional spelling of traditional names became popular in naming babies and recording artists, careless people misspelled ordinary names like Michael and Margaret, reversing letters (Micheal) or leaving them out (Margret). And, misspelling your own name is even worse, but I’ve seen it happen. Don’t rely on spellcheck. “There,” “they’re,” and “their” all sound alike but have different meanings. Double-check how the company name is written, too.
“References available upon request” at the bottom of a resume is outdated. If it’s in your résumé, take it out.
For industrial designers, graphic artists, and anyone whose candidacy is portfolio-driven, include the links, just like you would for your email address and LinkedIn profile. I never cease to be amazed at how many talented and creative people refer to their work without providing the hiring manager with a direct connection URL. If a recruiter on the average spends a mere 6 to 11 seconds perusing your resume, do you think they’re going to take the time to find examples of your work? You must be your your PR person and talent agent and make your creativity easy to click to.
Saying that you are skilled at Microsoft Office Suite, in particular, Word and Excel or Outlook email dates you for most office and managerial positions. These are take-it-for-granted-you-know-them-skills. Even social media, the prevalent communication currency today, is outdated resume content unless you’re applying for a social media job and need to describe things like campaigns you’ve created. It’s better to use your résumé real estate to list those in-demand skills that make you the exceptional candidate.
Schedule a FREE 15-minute career consultation with Certified Professional Career Coach Garrison Leykam at https://calendly.com/garrison-1