Looking for a new job can be a rewarding experience, mainly if you are successful early in your search. However, it can also be a long, frustrating process for many job seekers with a seemingly endless supply of ‘thanks, but no thanks’ responses to applications.
For a hiring manager, the first impression they have of you as a potential employee is when reading your resume, so it’s crucial to ensure that your CV accurately represents your ability and skillset.
Here are the top 3 mistakes job seekers make on their resumes:
submitting a generic resume
No two jobs are the same. Therefore why would you assume that you can use a ‘one size fits all’ resume to apply for roles?
The best way to make an employer notice your resume is to tailor it to meet the skills required in the job description.
Now we don’t mean to make things up!
We mean if an advertisement specifies they require someone with presentation skills.
For instance, make sure you include the time you presented to the board of directors an idea you had, or even attach examples of the types of Powerpoint / Keynote you have produced in the past.
your resume looks like a 5-year-old put it together
You don’t need a fancy resume to get noticed – after all, the information it holds is the key to your job search success!
Poorly formatted resumes make it hard for employers to determine if your experience is relevant to the role they are hiring for. They also reflect poorly on your computer skills and attention to detail.
The best way to represent your information is clearly and concisely.
Instead of writing big blocks of text, break up your information in byte size, easy-to-read points.
List your key skills in a separate area and your fundamental interests, and ensure that none of your experience is duplicated.
make out that you are fluent in Swahili and have a degree in astrophysics: aka, don’t lie!
You might think lying on your resume will get your foot in the door.
Still, ultimately if you are unable to back up your claims of experience on your resume at the interview stage (or worse, if you are hired for a role you have no idea how to do), it will reflect you in a negative light for any future roles you want to apply for.
In an age where information is everywhere, don’t assume that employers will take what is on your resume as the bible – many hiring managers now extensively research the claims job seekers make on their CVs via Google searches and social networks!
Your resume is your passport to the world of work, so you should always endeavour to make it the centre of your ‘personal brand’ experience.
Ensure it is easy to read, detailed (but not so long that a hiring manager must take three weeks of personal leave to trawl through the whole thing), and accurately represents your skills and abilities.
Have top things worked for you to make your CV stand out from other jobseekers?