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6 biggest resume mistakes

Are you using the same resume template that you used when you finished school or uni, which you hastily update each time you apply for a job? You wouldn't be the only one.

Most people haven't had their CV professionally reviewed for a very long time, if ever. And this could be a problem, as times have changed, and what was considered professional ten years ago will not cut it in 2019!

So here are some tips for bringing your resume into 2019!

1. Too many personal details

  • DON'T put in a personal details section. In particular, leave out your date of birth (unless you are an actor), marital status, and address. Listing your address listed may result in unintentional bias from the employer/recruiter.

  • DO list your mobile number, email address and LinkedIn profile web link. I like to have these items on the front page header with my name, then as the footer on subsequent pages.

2. A Career Objective

  • DON'T put a 'career objective' at the top of your CV. The employer wants to know who you are, not where you want to be in 5 years. And they probably assume you want the job if you are applying for it!

  • DO have a killer 'professional profile' at the top of your CV, which clearly conveys who you are (your skills, attributes and experience) and make sure you tailor it to the job.

3. Hard to read or crazy design

  • DON'T use crazy fonts and colours, and don't include a photo unless you work in the more creative fields. Avoid underlining and italics.

  • DO keep your documents simple and easy to read, with consistent fonts and sizes (not too small!) and a plain colour scheme. I like Calibri or Ariel. Use bullet points to summarise your key responsibilities and achievements. Use bold for headings.

4. Too much information

  • DON'T list every single job you've ever had and the detailed responsibilities - unless you are a school leaver and haven't had many jobs. I tend to list detail for jobs in the last 10 years, then just the job titles and dates for older roles.

  • DO put more detail into your most recent and the most relevant previous roles and just provide a summary of other roles. Keep your CV under 4 pages; and aim for 3 pages.

5. Not tailored

  • DON'T submit a generic CV. It shows you have put in no effort.

  • DO tailor your CV for each job application, particularly the professional profile and skills section; align your language with the language from the position description.

6. Not proof-read

  • DON'T submit a CV with spelling and grammatical errors.

  • DO ensure you triple check all your job application documents for spelling, grammar and formatting, and ask a friend to check them before submission. Print it off as it's easier to find errors on a hard copy.


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