Thursday, August 8, 2013

6 Things to NOT Include On Your Résumé

 I've recently become an administrative assistant for a recruiting firm, and I get to look at a lot of résumés each day.  Literally hundreds.  Before working here, I used to hear stories about how your résumé can't have a single error, that it had to be perfect, and that you have 7 seconds to catch the hiring manager's eye before you're deleted.

I'm  the first filter before résumés move onto the recruiters' desks.  Because I have so many to look at, I try to spend as little time on a résumé as possible.  If I can determine within 2 seconds whether to pass it on or not, I'm happy.

I can't get anyone a job (don't contact me about that), but I would like to share some résumé tips to help where I can.  I've got another post in the works already, but here is the first set of DO NOT's to keep in mind when you're drafting up your résumé.  Good luck!

(Click here for Part 2, by the way.)

Résumé Killers

#1 A generic objective

 Seriously, they're almost always the same.  Most objectives are just saying "I want a job" in fluffy, wordy language.  Sometimes I'll be looking at a résumé that says the person is looking for a medical job when they've actually applied for an administrative job.  That's another obvious faux pas.

#2 Poor or inconsistent formatting

PLEASE don't think that using fonts like papyrus will make you look creative.  If you're bolding the companies where you worked, make sure you bold all of the companies where you worked.  Make sure you have all of your bullet points and edges lined up to the same measurement.  Even all of the dashes between your work dates (2010 - 2012) should be the exact same.

#3 Your interests or hobbies

 Unless you're applying for a small family business that loves to go hiking, I can't imagine why a recruiter would want to know those things.  Sorry.  When I see hobbies listed on résumés, I immediately think that they aren't taking the application seriously.

#4 Every single thing you did at your previous jobs

 You're allowed to summarize, and if you mention everything, your résumé will span more than one page very quickly.  No one wants to read a huge wall of text, especially not a busy recruiter.  Just pull out the most pertinent things from your experience to highlight.

#5 An address far from the position's location

If you're applying for a job in Atlanta, and your address is listed as New York, you have a much higher chance of getting looked over.  Consider putting a "Current address/Permanent address" bit somewhere at the top to let your audience know you're going to be in the area.

#6 The color green

For some reason, it just never looks good coming from a résumé on screen.  It is so hard to find a good shade of green; please just stay away from it.  Trust me.  There are other colors to use.  But, um, not pink, either.

Extras to be aware of:

Gaps in your employment history can look suspicious.
Working at Wal-Mart can look unprofessional.
Many short periods of work in a row can look inconsistent.
If you were hiring for X company or X position, what do you think you'd like to see?  What do you think you'd not like to see?


  1. Do people usually use colour on their resumes? I've never used colour and wasn't aware you could!

    x Jasmine

    1. Some people do, yes. I've actually revamped mine recently (I'll send you an email picture), and my fiancee did the same just to add a twinge of pop. Others, though, like to go crazy and add orange headings, green font, or pink edges. Those ones tend to be over the top, but I have seen color done nicely.

  2. The address bit is a good point. I hadn't thought of that. Great work!


Thank you for sharing your thoughts! If there is something you want me to respond to specifically, feel free to send me an email; I'd love to chat.