Biggest resume mistakes:
- Using the same resume for all applications.
- Sending a generic resume with too much information.
- Do not do this because:
Pattern your resume after specific needs.
- recruiters will not read through your entire resume
- employers are looking for a specific set of skills
- it shows that you did not follow the job ad
What does “tailoring” your resume mean?
- Limiting the information in your resume.
- Listing experience and skills relevant to the job ad.
- Including details that will make you a prime candidate for the position.
- Using specific keywords used by the prospective employer.
Review the Job Description
- Know the keywords from the job description in the ad.
Review your resume.
- Underline the job summary and job duties.
- List down the job title, industry buzzwords (jargon), and verbs.
Limit relevant job experience to the most recent (last 10 years).
- Choose the parts that fit the requirements.
- Emphasize by placing on the top two-thirds of the page.
Use powerful words and numbers
- Don’t use passive words when describing achievements or work experience.
- Don’t use: helped, handled, worked.
- Instead, use:
Clearly describe the impact of your past work.Mention specific figures when appropriate.Examples:
Avoid using overused adjectives like creative, excellent, motivated, and hard working.Don’t write: “References available upon request”.Don’t list your references on the resume.
- “Spearheaded a clean-up campaign boosting office efficiency by 25%”.
- “Launched a new insurance product that contributed $2M in sales.”
- Write their names on a separate sheet of paper.
- Provide only when the employer asks for them.
- Use a simple and easy to understand format.
- Don’t make a decorative resume (unless it is for a design position).
- Avoid too much boldface or large font sizes (beyond 12 points).
- Aim for a professional look.
Edit, proofread, then edit again
- Ensure that your resume is error-free and concise.
Ask someone else to final check.Read: Tips when proofreading and editing your work.
- Look for spelling and grammatical errors.
- Remove unnecessary words.
- Short sentences are easy to understand.
Sources: Optimize your resume if you want to get the job, Peter Weddle, Career Cast.com; Tailor, tailor, tailor your resumes, Taunee Besson, Career Cast.com.
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