The cooler months of autumn can be the perfect time to launch a new job search, starting with whipping a resume into shape. A well-designed resume can help you get in front of the best hiring companies. But, before you go through all this effort, make sure your resume doesn’t include any of these common resume pitfalls that can turn off recruiters before they’ve had a chance to meet you.
Pitfall #1 – Your resume is boring
If you fall into the trap of writing your resume on a dull over-used resume template, you can be sure that the recruiters will pass it by. This is because they read through so many resumes daily, so the boring ones get ignored. Take the time to develop your resume on an updated resume template that includes nice use of text, white space, and call-out sections for maximum reader appeal.
Pitfall #2 – Your forgot to include achievements
If your resume reads like a long list of job requirements and responsibilities, without any real accomplishments, it’s missing the mark big time. Make sure you explain briefly what you did in each role and then add a list of at least 2-3 achievements or recognition you had in each job. Even if they were temp assignments, find something. Use financials and percentages whenever you can.
Pitfall #3 – Where is the cover letter?
A good resume includes a cover letter that acts as a quick introduction of your value to hiring managers. Use a similar template to build your cover letter, include a strong opening statement, a list of your top 5 skills you bring to the table, and wrap it up by inviting the recruiter to read your resume and contact you for a job interview.
Pitfall #4 – Your spelling and grammar leave much to be desired
Always take the time to do a spelling and grammar check of your resume, and any written materials you send out to recruiters. If you have issues in this area you can get a friend to proof-read your resume before it goes out for all to see. Poor grammar and spelling tell a company that you are not concerned with the with the quality of your work, and you don’t want to develop this relationship.
Pitfall #5 – Overuse of keywords
In an effort to sound amazing to hiring managers, it’s easy to include a bunch of industry power words in a resume. However, most recruiters are wise to this and they find it annoying. Avoid using too many keywords that make you look like an amateur, instead focus on marketable job skills and knowledge you have.
Follow the above tips to avoid making these common resume pitfalls, and you should look a lot better to hiring companies out there looking for great people this fall.