Your resume is one of a million. And job recruiters are only spending five to seven seconds looking at it.
With odds like that, if your resume isn’t up to par, your chances at getting noticed are pretty slim.
Surprisingly, many job seekers still make mistakes on their resume, some straightforward and some less so. Leave these five things off your resume to help set you on the right career path.
1. Poor Grammar
Recruiters cite improper grammar as one of the biggest reasons they immediately end consideration for applicants. More than three-quarters of business executives say a single typo is all it takes for them to rule out a candidate.
Remember that your resume is your first impression. If it’s laden with improper grammar, what impression does that give recruiters?
Grammatical errors, misspellings and other mistakes raise a red flag regarding your communication skills and attention to detail.
Proofread your resume yourself, and then have someone else do it. If you’re really driven to land a new job, ask a professional to help write and edit your resume.
“References available upon request” is outdated and unnecessary. If an employer is interested in your references, they will ask for them. You’re limited on space with your resume, so every word on the page needs to have purpose. These words are a waste of space.
Additionally, if a potential employer were to ask for your references, you should also give those individuals some notice that they may be contacted. Give them some background on the opportunity and how you think they can help you nail the job.
3. Irrelevant Professional Experience
Your resume should be a snapshot of why you are right for the specific position to which you’re applying. If you’re submitting your resume to the accounting assistant job ad, it’s best to leave off the time you spent as a dog walker in college.
The experiences on your resume should be related to the position and/or the industry; any previous jobs that don’t help your case should be removed.
4. Outdated Accomplishments
One of the top resume mistakes people make is filling their resumes with awards and prizes, including being named class clown for their senior year in high school. When reviewing these accomplishments, make sure they make sense and are professional and relevant.
5. Detailed High School and College Years
High school and college courses are also outdated information that you should omit. Simply listing the name of the school and your degree are all you need. If you have a college degree, remove your high school information entirely.
A list of courses is generally not necessary, and only include impressive information such as scholarships and educational recognitions (like graduating cum laude or earning a spot on the Dean’s List).
If you are just graduating college or if you’re applying for an internship while in school, this would be the only time that including some relevant coursework or a summary of your thesis project could be helpful and relevant.
Use Your Limited Space Wisely
A few seconds is not a lot of time to make a good impression. Use that time wisely and ensure you’ve checked for spelling and grammar errors and that you don’t have unnecessary lines of text on your resume referring to references available upon request. Finally, make sure that you haven’t wasted space with irrelevant professional experience, outdated accomplishments or overly detailed high school and college information.