For the average Joe, there is nothing trickier than writing a resume. This is especially common among those freshly graduated college students, who have just fallen from the academic tree, and are ready to be harvested. However, unless your university is going to be the one applying for you, you would have to apply for a job yourself. This isn’t necessarily a challenge, but you need a document without which nearly no employer would accept you. For most people, the document in question is their resume, which is a summarization of your qualifications and experiences, all in one document.
If you perform a quick Google search online for how to make your resume, you will encounter the same old results, such as using the same worn-out format and layouts. Many students take another route and delegate the responsibility of making their resume to anyone else entirely. Although this does classify as smart thinking, the role of making your resume should belong to you and you only. The only time someone else should be working on your resume is when editing it, and there are numerous Resume Editing Services available on the web as a result.
If you decide to take the personal path and wish to do everything yourself, there are some factors you need to take into account, before you save your document and hit that send button. Your resume is a formal document that is designed to portray how suitable you are for a certain job. In that sense, there should be nothing that goes against the requirements of the job, and it should maintain a professional feel. Nobody wants to read a resume that feels like it was made in a hurry, and keeping the image of the hiring manager reading it in mind, often solves that issue.
Look down below to get an idea of the things to watch out for, while writing a resume. Although it is easy to fall into making these mistakes the first time around, the important bit is to ensure that your efforts are improved continuously. All skills need to improve over time, and resume making is no exception to that rule.
Making it long
Unlike college application essays, which are supposed to be a representation of your language, writing, and comprehension skills, resumes are rather different. Although your professors and admissions staff might’ve had the time to read through your essay thoroughly, the job of a hiring manager is quite the opposite. In the professional environment, time is money, and anything that causes someone to lose more time then is needed is promptly tossed out. Your resume needs to be concise and feature all of your qualifications and experiences on the same page.
Ideally, your resume needs to be based on one page only. Although it might feel a little strange handing your interviewer one page, they are going to thank you and keep your resume distinct from the other applicants. You need to think of your resume as being a promotional flyer than an autobiography. All that matters, in this case, is your suitability for the job, and nothing else. In any case, you are supposed to highlight your relevant skills and cut out everything else that is irrelevant.
Resumes are professional documents and are definitely not places to express your artistic side. Albeit that might be a great idea if you are applying for a designing or arts-related job. There is nothing quite like a professionally written, well-edited resume that hits just the right spots in terms of conciseness and boldness. If you’ve ever looked at a traditional resume, you will notice the absolute lack of colours, with the most common ones used being black, red, blue, and grey. Even so, the colours are mainly used to underline text and headings, and the resume contains little to no complex shapes and graphics.
Instead, it is much better to have a resume that follows the traditional style of formatting, using lists and bullet points. Another advantage of having a simple resume is that it can easily be opened and viewed on any device or program. Similarly, the problems stemming from formatting changes can be resolved by saving your resume as a pdf file, instead of a word document.
As wrong as it is, it is a common sight to see people lying on their resumes. There are people who lie about their qualifications, work experience, and even the grades they had at the time of graduation. In fact, some companies even have policies against this by deeming false information in one’s resume as reasonable grounds for termination. There are even people who exaggerate their performances at previous employers and even make up random figures to fictional assignments that they ranked “highly” in. What’s humorous is that these lies can be detected instantly, provided the interviewer is skilled enough.
The best way to get around this is, to be honest at all times. No matter how much you think you can get away with it, any claims made without evidence are as good as false. Having valid certificates and documents testifying your success is a lot stronger, than something as vague as a line on your resume. Whatever skills you may have, you need to demonstrate how those will be applied to the position in question as productively as possible.
Spilling the beans
Despite the strict confidentiality policies enforced by companies, many applicants make the mistake of including sensitive information into their resumes, thinking that the hiring managers wouldn’t notice. In fact, hiring managers know exactly what is confidential data, and are wholly authorized to reject your resume if they feel that you’ve spoken a bit too much. Just like any business, there is a great deal of information security that goes into protecting data. However, the leading cause for this data being leaked is none other than the human link. Applicants bragging about their experience might disclose the details of a project, for example, or state figures that were being kept a secret from competing companies.
Regardless of the perspective you hold on this, it is completely wrong to spill secrets for your own benefit. Although companies are in a constantly competitive playing field, someone who cannot keep a secret just cannot be trusted. Hiring this person into a company is a risk, and the sole person responsible would be the hiring manager if anything goes wrong. Although your accomplishments belong to you, information that could compromise the confidentiality of your previous employer should be avoided.
Riddled with errors
Ask any hiring manager about the single biggest problem with resumes, and the answer would simply be spelling and typing errors. In many cases, the sole cause for this issue is not reading your resume after your done writing it. Just like any professional document, editing, and proofreading the document is the final step in the writing process. Having a resume that is filled with spelling, grammar, and punctuation mistakes just show that it was hurriedly written.
This can be prevented by proofreading your resume after you are satisfied with how it’s written. We recommend taking a break, and returning to your resume in a few hours or so. When you sit down with your resume, it’s a good idea to change its font size and type, to force your mind to spot mistakes clearly.