Avoid costly job search mistakes
IT’S always fun to hear about the big mistakes job applicants make — like showing up in sweatpants or falling asleep during the interview. (And yes, both of those things have happened.)
It’s less fun to hear about the smaller mistakes — like someone showing up five minutes late or having a typo on the first line of a cover letter — but turns out, those tiny blunders are what hiring managers complain about the most.
1. Including every accomplishment It’s not important to include that you worked as a dog walker for three months of college and every single thing from that point until now.
Think of it this way: Hiring managers just want the highlights; they want to know what’s compelling about you as quickly as possible (especially if they’re reading hundreds of resumes). If you really want to go into more detail, save it for the interview.
2. Including an objective statement Objective statements just eat up space on your resume that could be spent telling an employer how stellar you are. The only time one of these sentences is necessary is if you’re making a gigantic career change and your experiences don’t line up entirely with the position.
Still want to write some sort of introductory line on your resume? Try out the summary statement. Some people swear by it. 3. Including blatant typos Yes, we know you’ve heard it again and again and again. But given that a 2013 CareerBuilder survey found that 58 percent of resumes have typos, we’re going to say it just one more time.
How can you stop falling prey to resume typos? Have someone else read your resum e— often, other people can more easily spot errors because they haven’t been staring at the page for hours.
If that’s really not possible, use Muse editor-in-chief Adrian Granzella Larssen’stips for proofreading your own resume: “It’s helpful to temporarily change the font, or to read your resume from the bottom up — your eyes get used to reading a page one way and can often catch new errors when you mix the format up.”
4. Lying Another pretty obvious one, but believe us — it still happens. (A candidate listed a certain skill on her resume, then when we asked her about her experience in it, she looked at us blankly and admitted it was simply “something she wanted to learn more about.”)
Remember what your mama told you: Honesty is always the best policy. If you feel like there’s part of your background that’s not quite up to snuff, your best bet is creative — but truthful — positioning.
5. Not tailoring your resume to the job Once your resume makes it in front of the eyes of a hiring manager, you want it to scream, “I’m perfect for this job!” Right? Well, practically speaking, this means you can’t submit the same resume and cover letter for every job you apply to.
Since each position will list different requirements, each application you submit should highlight your past experience and accomplishments specific to that particular job.
6. Including random, unrelated, or offputting hobbies Unfortunately, hiring managers usually don’t care if you love basketball, are active in your book club, or are a member of a Dungeons and Dragons group, but we still see this stuff on resumes anyway.
Eliminate anything that’s not totally transferable to work-related skills (or a really, really epic conversation starter).
Knowing a few resume rules will reduce stress and help avoid costly mistakes.