Resumes: What Employers Do Not Want to See

Unless you win the lottery, you will work at some point during your life. This means that you will need to create a resume. By now, most of you already have a resume from your high school years, however, it may contain information overload, and employers do not want that! When it comes to your resume, less is more. I have had to edit my resume a few times before, removing unnecessary information from my past. Here you will find tips on what information recruiters and hiring managers do not want to see on a resume.

1)   Irrelevant Previous Jobs and Skills I struggled with this topic when I composed my resume because I’ve had a lot of jobs from years ago that didn’t relate to the job in which I was applying for. For example, I worked as a server for a few years and although restaurant work doesn’t exactly apply to most industries, I had to find a way to include the skills I learned as a server into my industry specific resume. I put emphasis on the customer service angle of being a server, which  is important to any industry. Instead of listing every single job you have ever had or every skill you have ever learned, only include the jobs and skills that are the most relevant and valuable to the job you are applying for.

2)     Grammatical Errors and Misspelled Words- According to an article by Alison Doyle, about.com’s guide to job searching, the top mistakes job seekers make on their resumes include verb tense, hyphen use, formatting, and careless mistakes. If you misspell common words or use improper grammar you will lose credibility by the recruiter or hiring manager. If you make these mistakes on your resume, your prospective employer will lack confidence in your ability to properly produce documents on the job; in other words, you most likely will not get the job. It is as simple as doing a spell check and proofreading your resume to avoid these errors.

3)      References Available Upon Request This line should never be included in your resume. If you are asked to provide references, then list them in detail on a separate page; if not, don’t include them. As stated on LinkedIn, the only times you might want to include a reference when you haven’t been asked to is if you know someone who currently or previously has been employed with the company or are in a hiring position, or if your reference is a widely known expert in the field in which you are applying to. References can give credibility to your potential employers, just make sure they are not put in an uncomfortable position to lie for you.

4)      LiesThe most important information to leave off your resume is untruthful, exaggerated, or fabricated information. You never want to lie or stray from the truth of “the real you” on your resume. Everyone likes to make themselves sound better than they really are, but don’t, because you never know who might know someone that knows you. Plus, if you do get the job, you will probably be asked to perform those skills that you exaggerated.

5)      Stating That You’ve Been Fired Your resume should contain only your positive attributes, therefore you should not list that you have been fired from a previous job for any reason. If the job is relevant to your industry, you should still include it, just leave out that you were fired. If you are offered an interview and they ask why you left that particular job, then you can provide an explanation.

When preparing your resume, think about what the recruiter or hiring manager would want (or not want) to see. Customize your resume for the specific industry and job you are applying to. Most importantly, make sure you exclude all information that is irrelevant to the job; your future employer will appreciate it and you just might get hired! The following link is an informative website I found that provides examples of what information should be included in a resume for various industries:

http://career-advice.monster.com/resumes-cover-letters/resume-samples/sample-resumes-by-industry/article.aspx#Marketing

Megan Reeves is a Professional Writing student at the University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida. She is majoring in Behavioral Healthcare and minoring in Business Administration.

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