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9 Common Resume Mistakes You Must Avoid

resume Seems like this blog has been written. It has, by many others, in other forms and from other perspectives. However, these 9 common resume mistakes come up again and again. The reminders are necessary.

Simply put, fail to meet these objectives and your resume will be put in the “rejection” pile.

They are common sense, and every one of us would pass a test if we were quizzed on them, but in practice, these mistakes happen over and over. Here’s why.

Contrary to popular belief, recruiters are in the business of “eliminating” candidates from consideration. Many job applicants feel that recruiters, or search and placement firms, represent them. True only if you are the candidate that fits their criteria. Don’t miss fitting the criteria by making these mistakes. Instead, make your resume the first one that attracts the recruiter by following these rules.

  1. Dump the objective. Years ago, it was important to state your objective. Today, company’s don’t care what your objective is, they care to know what you can do to help them achieve their company’s objectives.
  2. Use perfect grammar. Have at least two people proof read your resume for errors. Fix them, and have two more people (different people) proof read it again.
  3. Write in terms of results. Every statement on your resume should reflect a statement in terms of quantifiable results. You know you are doing that when you see things described in % positive change, or $ return.
  4. Never lie. Inaccurate facts will be found out. Recruiters see through it immediately, and through behavioral interviewing and reference checking, the truth always comes out.
  5. Write in first person. Your resume is a statement by you, about you. It is not a biographical summary. Don’t use third person.
  6. Insert no pictures. Don’t use clip art, a photo of yourself or other image. Don’t use tables. If your resume can’t be scanned by an ATS (applicant tracking system) it is not going to be found.
  7. Use a single font. Keep your font simple and uniform. Use italics and bold very sparingly. If you use italics and bold, use it consistently throughout.
  8. Print it for face-to-face meetings. Always take a clean copy of your resume to an interview, and offer “the latest” to your interviewer.
  9. Use word, never PDF. When sending your resume over email, always send in MS Word format. It will be imported into an ATS. A recruiter may need to adjust formatting for presentation of candidates. Make it easy for them to do this.

Check these things as you write your resume, then check them again and again. It will surprise you how one or more of these will creep into your resume with a simple edit you make for that “one” job. Remember, you have to make your resume get through the “elimination” steps, to ensure you are considered for a position you are applying for. Don’t be eliminated for these easy to correct reason.

Barton Professional Placement Group connects high performance candidates with exceptional employers. We spend time with candidates to help avoid these 9 common resume mistakes. We work with our clients and our candidates to get past these barriers. Call us today.