Resume Mistakes to Avoid

Here are the top resume mistakes job seekers make, and what you can do to avoid them!

Excessive formatting or prefabricated layouts.

The ATS (applicant tracking system) cannot sort through resumes that have excessive formatting, so please avoid using any preloaded resume formats. Keep your resume clean and simple, without tables, lines, shading, or images, using a standard font and normal margins. If you want to show off your art or design skills, create a separate document that you can bring with you to your interview, rather than uploading one.

Listing large blocks of text.

Once your resume makes it through to a live person, it takes just 7 seconds for a recruiter or hiring manager to decide if your resume is worth the read. Long blocks of text appear overwhelming and aren’t exactly “skim” friendly. Make sure your resume has generous spacing, a streamlined summary, a list of skills, and short bullet points that contain responsibilities and accomplishments for each position.

Using the same resume for each application.

No two positions are the same, so why would you use the SAME resume for each position? Customize your resume for each position you apply to, ensuring the skills, accomplishments, and summary meet the needs of what the company is looking for, using the job description as a guide. Failure to do so will almost always cost you the job, as your resume will not be optimized to get past the ATS.

Egregious spelling and grammatical errors.

Typos and grammatical errors happen to the best of us! Heck, I’m sure you can find a few right now! The trouble is egregious errors throughout are difficult for recruiters and hiring managers to overlook. Be sure to review your resume thoroughly, and ask a friend or family member to look over your resume as well. This is especially important if English is your second language.

Dates, positions, and experience do not align.

If your LinkedIn profile, resume, and application list different dates, varying educational history, and different titles, you best believe that a recruiter, hiring manager, or ATS will take note. Make sure that the dates are the same across your resume, LinkedIn profile, and application as well as your position titles, educational history, and location. Any difference could hinder your job search.

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