Resume writing can be a time-consuming and difficult task. However, if you want one that says “Hire Me!” and gets the attention of hiring managers, every section of your resume needs to be constructed thoughtfully. That’s why it’s best not to rush through the resume writing process.
Many articles provide suggestions and advice on what should be included or tips on how to construct the best resume, but rarely we hear about what to leave OFF. There are some details that just don’t belong on your resume and they could even cost you a potential job interview. Here are six things our recruiters at MaintenanceBest suggest you remove from your resume to improve your chances of taking the next step in the hiring process:
- Irrelevant Jobs
There are certain jobs that you really don’t need to include on a resume, like fast-food jobs or babysitting. Now, if these jobs are your only experience as you start off in the workforce, then include them. But, ideally, all jobs listed should be relevant to the job you are applying for. Also, jobs that lasted just a few months don’t need to be listed, unless they too are directly related to the job position.
This means, you could have several different resumes as you tailor each one to each job position you submit your application for. A resume of your past experiences for a Maintenance Tech position shouldn’t look exactly the same as your resume you submit for a Janitor position.
- Inappropriate email address
As a job candidate, you need to realize that your resume probably will immediately end up in the “No” pile if you have a weird, inappropriate, or unprofessional email address. It should not reference body parts, curse words, or info unrelated to the job (like ‘Lovefishing@xxxx.com’). Make sure it is not trendy, quirky, silly, flirtatious or offensive. If you don’t have one, create a professional email for just job applications and have it be just your first name and last name. Simple, but safe.
- Unnecessary hobbies/interests
Love to go camping? Or paint in the evenings? Maybe you take up gardening on the weekends? We all have hobbies and as wonderful as they are, hiring managers do not care how you spend your free time. They have a job to fill and hundreds of resumes to sift through quickly. Their focus is finding a candidate who meets the employer’s list of requirements. Whether or not you play the clarinet most likely won’t sway the hiring manager to schedule an interview with you. So, if your hobby or interest is not specifically relevant to the job you are applying for, then best to leave it off your resume.
- Personal details
You don’t need to add more personal information than is necessary on your resume. Include the important details: your name, phone number, and email address – these are all mandatory as these will allow the hiring manager to contact you for an interview. But as for other personal information like date of birth, house address, marital status, political/religious beliefs, nationality, and/or GPA from college (if over 10 years ago), this information is not as vital at this stage in the hiring process.
Also, unless you are applying for a position in an industry that requires a photo (like an actor or a model), avoid putting one on your resume. When you only have about 7 seconds to win over the hiring manager, a photo might be a distraction. Adding a photo doesn’t add value. Sell your skills and abilities, not your appearance.
- Outdated work experiences
Are you listing work positions that happened 10-15 years ago? The older the position (unless it was at a big, well-known company, or is closely related to the job you want), the less hiring managers will care about it. If there are responsibilities in these older positions that are still relevant, then most likely they will be represented adequately in more recent positions. Rather than list outdated work experiences, use that precious resume space to expand upon the details of your most recent jobs and accomplishments.
While everyone might feel tempted to embellish their past work experiences so their resume gets noticed, it’s never a good idea. Your resume should be tailored to the job description, but you must make sure you are telling the truth about your past, your skillsets, and your qualifications. If you embellished or lied on your resume, you might be unable to answer questions during the interview or it might be difficult to do the actual job. If the employer ever were to find out, at any part of the process, you could lose the job offer or the position (if already hired).
When it comes to writing your resume, always stop and consider whether the information you’re adding is both relevant and beneficial to your job application. These above resume errors could be fatal and eliminate you immediately from a shortlist of eligible candidates, which we do not want. You might not have control over all the variables during the hiring process, but at least take charge over those factors that are in your control. If you need more assistance with enhancing/editing/tailoring your resume for a specific job, contact your local MaintenanceBest recruiter, Roberto Lozada, for help (623) 267-3184.