If you are a job seeker, you would have heard, quite many times, a long list of things that you should have in your resume to land your dream job. What is not commonly told, however, are things you should NOT have on your résumé.
Note: Some of these things are not necessarily bad. While some are not that important and take up unnecessary space, others might set you against recruitment bias. They are also those that are outdated because, like most facets of human life, the human resource field is ever-evolving.
2. Personal Details
3. Irrelevant Work Experiences
4. Awkward Email Addresses
5. Polarizing Interests and Hobbies
7. Lies and Exaggerations
8. Social Media Profiles
9. Big Words
This feels counter-productive since your reason for submitting your résumé in the first place is to achieve your objective of joining an organization. Not to mention that most resume objectives are cheesy, repetitive, and overly patronizing. The recruiter has seen you ‘to secure a career opportunity to fully utilize my training and skills while making a significant contribution to the success of the organization’s statement a million times already.
If you are switching industries or are a graduate trainee, a summary is applicable.
The old résumé format required that you input your details – age, state-of-origin, religious views, and so on. However, things are changing. Having these included can set you for discrimination, which is against the labor laws and it is counterproductive for you to include something that could jeopardize your chances of getting while a job while job searching.
There is no deviation. There are labor laws put in place that make it illegal to demand a job seeker’s details before employing them.
Understandably, your résumé is meant to showcase your career experience and your skills. So, why would you need to take out work experience from it? Here is why – Your résumé is like a marketing slip; It is to sell you to the recruiter shortly and concisely. Think of it this way, if a TV ad ran for five minutes, would you knowingly sit through it without changing the station?
That is pretty much what unnecessary work experiences do. They pad your résumé and take up space that could have housed something more useful. You should only include work experiences that are relevant to the particular job you are applying for. Nobody cares that you sold roasted corn four moons ago if you are applying for the role of a graphics designer.
Your experiences may very well be fitting for the position you are applying for, but be lengthy. The general rule of thumb is 4 previous work experiences and not to include anything over ten years is not pertinent. Save it for your Curriculum Vitae.
The email address on your résumé should be professional. These are the qualities of a professional email address:
Note: In a bid to appear professional, please do not put your present work email on your résumé. It implies a lack of commitment to your job and employer that could manifest in the position you are applying for. Not to mention that it could count illegal conversion of company property and can score you a theft charge.
Except you own the business, then you are well within your rights to use your company email as your contact mail on your résumé.
Generally speaking, most hobbies and interests are of no real importance and should not be on your résumé in the first place as they take up valuable space. But if for one reason or the other, you have it there, do not include anything dissentious. Avoid including your political and social views in your resume.
You should only include your views/interests if you are certain that they align with those of the company you are applying for.
Your résumé is not your autobiography; you need not narrate your life story in a way that you have to include pronouns. Avoid the use of personal pronouns such as “I,” “me,” “she,” or “he.” Also, do not refer to yourself in the third person. It makes you come across as a weirdo with a god-complex. In place of these, write your résumé in what is referred to as the absent first person, where all pronouns are dropped from the sentences; as it is common sense to the recruiter(s) that everything on your résumé is about you.
As a job seeker, you should include verifiable information on your résumé. This seems self-explanatory, right? Wait till you find out that over a third of job seekers are economical with the truth on their résumé.
The most common thing job they lie about is work experience after which lying about skills and job duties are a close second and third. Not to get preachy, but dishonesty usually backfires. Not only would it become apparent that you do not possess the skill you claim you do (should you get the job), but hiring managers typically conduct background checks which would bring your insincerity to light.
Funnily enough, most hiring managers are not as strict as most job seekers think. More often than not, they overlook certain requirements when recruiting for a role.
We live in a global world, where any and every sign of technological savviness included on your résumé should help sell you better to the hiring manager. There is a catch, however. A rundown of your social media accounts can reveal so much about you – your opinions can count against you (irrespective of them being said in the past or jest), so it is better not to include on your resume social media accounts that host unprofessional content or that do not reinforce your current job goals, and are dormant.
If you want to include any social media account on your résumé, make sure it is your personal brand and serves to demonstrate why you're qualified for the job. Your LinkedIn profile, Medium, GitHub (or whatever profession-specific account(s) you have) for this bill.
Yes, your résumé should show you in the best light – and one way you can do this is by displaying your language mastery. It does get tricky, however, as using words that are rarely used in everyday communication makes you appear eccentric (which may turn the hiring manager off you). Your words should be simple and straight-to-the-point.
A recurring issue in résumés is the presence of the phrase, "references upon request" that typically appears at the bottom of the résumé. If you have it on your résumé, take it off; as it is a misuse of precious space.
On the off chance that the hiring manager needs to address your references, they will ask you to provide their contact information. Additionally, it also allows you to tell your references early that a hiring manager may be making a call.
Now that things you should not have on your résumé have been discussed, it is necessary that things you should have on your résumé be highlighted.
This post thoroughly details what way your résumé can be structured to increase your chances of being employed.