Hunting for a new job isn’t easy these days. It can be difficult to separate yourself from the crowd. Your resume can either help or hinder you. If you’re guilty of any of these four resume mistakes, correct them ASAP! Your resume might be holding you back from landing your next tech interview.
1. Typos and Grammatical Errors
This one you probably knew. After all, how many times have you been told a single typo will land your application in the “no” pile?
It’s true though. You may not notice the slip-up as you hurry to apply before the posting closing date, but it’s often the first thing a hiring manager or recruiter notices when they open your application. Sometimes, they’re not even looking for typos when they spot them hiding in your resume.
There’s only one cure for this: Proofread, proofread, and proofread again. If you’re not sure you’ve caught everything or grammar isn’t your strong suit, turn your resume over to a trusted friend, colleague, or even a recruiter. They’ll help you catch any lingering errors.
2. The One-Size-Fits-All Approach
Do you customize your resume for every position you apply for? If not, you should!
It’s easy to use a form template to apply for jobs. It may seem useful when you’re applying to many jobs in order to up your chances of getting at least one interview. You could be hurting your chances more than you think by committing this resume mistake.
Most recruiters and hiring managers use software to help them sort through dozens upon dozens of applications. They scour resumes for certain keywords. If you’re using a generic template, you may not have the right keywords on your resume! You’ll end up in the discard pile.
A one-size-fits-all approach saves you time, but your recruiter or hiring manager can tell you’re taking a shortcut. Do they really want to hire someone who wouldn’t even take the time to customize their resume for them?
3. A Poor Design
One of the best resume tips going around right now is to use design to differentiate your resume. When you’re competing with a hundred or a thousand other documents, a quick visual marker makes your resume stick in the mind of the reader. In a sea of boring Word documents, a colourful and fun design makes your document instantly more appealing!
Design can be a double-edged sword though, especially if your degree isn’t in graphic design. A resume can easily become too busy or cluttered. Poorly designed resumes will stick in the viewer’s mind for all the wrong reasons.
Simple text-only resumes can also suffer from design flaws, so don’t think you’re safe if you stick to a basic Word document. Wall-to-wall text or too many fonts can easily make the reader’s eyes cross.
Adopt a tried-and-true free template from one of many online resources, or send your resume to others to review before you pass it along.
4. No Action Verbs
Can you hear your high school English teacher droning on about the importance of strong verbs? You might wish you’d paid a little more attention when you hear employers want to see strong action verbs on your resume
The point of your resume is to tell your potential employer what you’ve accomplished. You accomplished things by taking dynamic action, so use strong verbs to describe what you’ve done in your professional career. Instead of saying you were “responsible for the design of a new mobile app,” go ahead and say you designed it.
This also helps you avoid falling into the trap of being vague. Pinpoint exactly what you did.
If you see any of these problems with your resume, don’t worry. You can fix them before you begin the next round of your job hunt. A recruiter can help you get your resume into shipshape.