There are common mistakes that many people make on their resumes. Some of these mistakes can even ruin your career prospects. Avoiding the following five mistakes will go a long way toward giving your career the boost it deserves.
1. Spelling and Grammatical Errors
This is the most common mistake that people make on their resumes, but it's also one of the worst because it shows a fundamental lack of respect toward your career and the opportunity you are applying for. If you are not detail-oriented enough to check for spelling or grammatical errors in your resume, then how can someone expect you to excel at tasks that require attention to detail?
2. Using Passive Language
Saying "I was responsible for" rather than "Responsible for" makes everything sound less active and important. While it may be true that you are saying exactly the same thing, being concise sounds more professional. Not only does this apply when writing resumes, but it applies to everything you write.
3. Missing or Unnecessary Contact Information
If someone needs to get in touch with you about career opportunities and they can't because your resume does not contain a way for them to do so, then their only recourse is to discard your resume and look at another one. Always make sure that your resume includes some form of contact information. It can be a phone number, email address, LinkedIn profile URL, or anything else that is appropriate for the career opportunity that you are applying for. The recruiter and/or hiring manager will thank you when they have a way to contact you!
4. Not Well Organized, Concise, or Easy to Skim
If your career/resume is not well organized, then it will be difficult for career prospects to find the information they need. It can also make you look like you lack good career planning skills, which is something that employers value in career professionals. Similarly, if your resume is too long or does not clearly state what career goals you are trying to accomplish through the career opportunity that you are applying for, then recruiters and/or hiring managers will likely discard it without reading much (if any) of it. An employer needs someone who can clearly communicate their career goals and accomplishments; failing at this task makes it seem like you cannot do that during an interview or on the job either.
5. Too Long
The resumes that recruiters and/or hiring managers receive have to be concise and easy to skim because of the large amounts of applications/resumes recruiters and/or hiring managers receive for each job opening. In today's job market, around 80% (or more) of the resumes received will not interest employers enough for them to contact the career professional; this means your goal is to catch their eye quickly and get them interested in reading more of your resume. Having a resume that is too long dilutes the importance of the points presented in each resume section, making it more likely that recruiters and/or hiring managers will discard your resume. This is especially true if your resume has too much information about yourself and not enough career goals related to the career opportunity you are applying for.
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