Resume is your opportunity to sell yourself to an employer. It is a space for you to share all of the information that makes you a viable candidate, and also your chance to say why you are better than the hundreds of other individuals that are also applying to the same job.
That is why you simply cannot afford to make any mistakes. You’re not only trying to convince the employer that you are a top talent – you are also trying to show that you are a better talent than the 100 other people that applied for the same job. Make any mistakes, and that proof becomes difficult.
Common Resume Mistakes Worth Fixing Right Now
Some resume mistakes are difficult to fix. One of the most common mistakes is simply sending in a generic resume without writing it for the job. Every job has its own unique needs, and so every resume must highlight those needs. That can take time.
But some mistakes are both very common and very easy to fix. These mistakes should be dealt with immediately, so that your resume is ready to make an impact.
Mistake 1: Sending Resume in the Wrong File Format
Follow the company’s instructions. Some hiring managers use applicant tracking systems that only read one type of file format, often .doc or .docx. If you send it as a jpg or a single image pdf, your resume may be ignored.
However, when no applicant tracking system is used, PDF file formats are often recommended. This is because hiring managers are often multitasking when reviewing resumes.
It is too easy for them to accidentally press a button, create a spelling error or delete text, and then suddenly feel as though you are not professional.
PDF format also ensures that your font selection opens cleanly. Make sure you do not use Single-Image PDF. You want hiring managers to be able to select your text, but not edit it.
See if there is any information on file format, otherwise stick to .doc (and .docx) for jobs likely to use applicant tracking systems, and .pdf for smaller companies that may not.
Mistake 2: Fix Your Email
Personal email addresses are often unprofessional. Puns based on your name (JohnTopOfIt@email.com), numbers (email@example.com), or something completely unrelated (AnyoneSmellThat@email.com) are all seen as unprofessional. Indeed, even perfectly reasonable email addresses can make a bad impression.
If your email address still ends with @aol.com, @hotmail.com, @netscape.net, a college email address years after college is over, or any of the other “old school” email address suffixes, you could create a bad first impression as well. Make sure your email is of the utmost professionalism.
Mistake 3: Your Incredible Golf Skills
It wasn’t long ago when the skills section of a resume was a hobby section, and used to share riveting information about you, such as the fact that you golf or that you’re an avid reader.
No one cares anymore. Any skills/hobby section can either be taken off the resume altogether, or replaced with something that is more impressive, such as actual, job related skills.
Mistake 4.0: Your Grades Aren’t Great
It can be tough to write the education portion of the resume, especially if you do not have a lot of achievements. But unless you are recently out of school and have outstanding grades in all your courses, there isn’t really anything that good grades tell the employer that proper spelling and grammar do not already cover.
Mistake 5: What is Your Objective?
“To obtain a position working hard for your company and hoping you do not read how boring my objective statement is.” Objective statements do not have to be boring. Not only are most applicants replacing their objective statements with professional summaries, but it’s possible to write an objective statement that proclaims an actual objective. For example:
“Obtaining a position in a growth startup, where my experience with CRM software, sales, and rapidly changing organizations will make a direct, immediate impact on company revenue.”
Most resumes will benefit from a professional summary, rather than an objective statement. But you also do not need to write a terrible, corny objective. Make it pop, and your resume will pop with it.
Everyone Makes Mistakes
When you are competing with hundreds of other applicants, every mistake you make can be a problem. That is why it is beneficial to take the time to perfect your resume and make sure it is free of these and other errors. The better your resume is, the more you will be able to prove that you are the person worth hiring the most.