As a job seeker, you know there are many ways to make a great first impression: from dressing the part to showing up on time and, of course, having a professional resume that catches the attention of your potential future employer. Unfortunately, while a resume may get you an interview, common mistakes (that we will discuss below) could have your resume ending up in the recycle bin. Here are a few resume mistakes that could cost you the job you desire.
Spelling and Grammatical Mistakes
Glaring spelling and grammatical mistakes send a message to employers that you either did not proofread your resume or, worse yet, you did proofread and didn’t catch the mistakes. This mistake is known as a deal breaker when it comes to asking a potential candidate for an interview. We suggest having a professional take a look at your resume so you can fix all spelling errors, grammatical mistakes, and typos.
Incorrect Contact Information
If the ultimate goal of sending out a resume is to land a job, then be sure that your contact information is correct and accurate. Imagine that your resume lands in the hands of the recruiter who wants to call you in for an initial interview and your resume has an old address, email, or out-of-date phone number. That makes it pretty hard to contact you in order to start the process. In most cases, recruiters will move on to the next applicant if the contact information is inaccurate.
Not Customizing Your Resume
If your job search includes applying to many positions at multiple companies, you will want to customize your resume rather than sending out a generic, cookie-cutter resume. Since many resumes are viewed first by a computer, which scans for keywords, you will want to customize each resume for the specific job you are applying for. Tailoring your resume content with key phrases and words may help your application get through the electronic screening portion of the process.
Not Using Specifics and Action Verbs
Instead of listing things you have been responsible for in past positions, make that list come to life by using an action verb at the beginning of each description. For instance, instead of saying that you were “responsible for” something use verbs that can punch it up a notch. Use words like: resolved, increased, developed, managed, lead, spearheaded, and organized.
Making the Text Too Visually Confusing
While many job applicants like to list as many skills, positions, and accomplishments, make sure that your resume is organized and in easy-to-read text. Too many different fonts, sizes, and indents can make your resume look chaotic and cluttered. Keep it simple and easy on the eyes with bullets and headings, and keep the text short and to the point.
We suggest before you send out your resume or submit it electronically, that you have a friend or professional take a look at it. There are also a lot of online resources such as Grammarly or Editorr that can help identify mistakes. If you have the time, consider taking a class at MassHire to beef up not only your resume but also your interviewing skills as well.