Top 5 Reasons your Resume Will End Up in the Trash

Counting down the top five reasons why your resume will end up in the trash can.  All of these comments are pretty basic, but it always amazes me how frequently they are overlooked by the most educated, experienced  candidates.

5.  It is unattractive.  What?  Unattractive?  Why does a resume have to be attractive.  Because it shows you care.  If you take the time to make your resume visually appealing you will have a better chance of having it read.  A reader may not be able to articulate why your resume isn’t attractive, but they will know.  Take the time.

4.  It is “too too.” What?  I thought you just said it has to be attractive.  It does.  But not too attractive.  The unbridled use of graphic elements usually distracts from, rather than enhances the content of a resume.  The only exception is possibly in highly creative fields.  In most fields, don’t stray too far from commonly used fonts and other simple graphic elements to add clarity and emphasis.

3.  There are no dates.  If you have been out of school for more than 10 years, it’s ok not to put the years of graduation.  It is never ok not to include the months and yearson the employment history.  It looks like you are trying to hide something.  Fess up.  Explain the gaps.

2.  Spelling, Punctuation and Grammatical Errors.  There is just no excuse for these kinds of mistakes.  Use spell check, but do not rely solely on it.  Have a real live person, someone with a strong business background or an English major, proofread your document the old-fashioned way.

1.  You just aren’t qualified for the position.  When the position clearly specifies a skill set that you do not have, don’t waste your time.  If you are close, lacking perhaps only 20% of the requirements and able to offer a different 20% that will have value, then perhaps.  But if you are clearly not qualified, don’t bother.   Focus your attention on the positions that match your education and experience.


Check our calendar for a FREE Resume Review on Saturday, November 11.