7 Major Resume Mistakes You Might Be Making Right Now

December 12, 2019


If your serious about landing a new job, chances are that you've spent hours working on your resume. You may think your resume is perfect, but you may actually be missing something. Take a few minutes to check your resume for these 7 mistakes before submitting that job application.


1. Not watching your spelling, grammar, and contact information errors

Recruiters may immediately throw your resume away because of one small error. If there are simple mistakes in your resume, it may allow the employers to draw conclusions about you. For instance, implying you don’t care about the position. A common, much overlooked, error is tenses. Throughout your experience section make sure you aren’t jumping back and forth between tenses. For instance, in your past experience remain consist between each point with past tense. Don’t forget to double check your contact information to ensure that you have everything correct.


2. Underselling your accomplishments

When writing your resume, make sure to be short and to the point. However, when you are explaining your accomplishments, don’t sell yourself short. To stand out, quantify whenever possible. For example, if you managed a restaurant, don’t merely say, “Worked with employees in a restaurant setting.” Sell yourself up by saying, “Recruited, hired, trained, and supervised more than 20 employees in a restaurant with $2 million in annual sales.” Be sure to make yourself stand out while keeping your content short and sweet.


3. Using outdated or irrelevant information

Keep in mind that if you include unnecessary information, it may show recruiters that you are not up to date on resume standards. Do not include age, marital status, or your children, if you have any, on your resume. Recruiters cannot factor this into the hiring process. Depending on the position you are applying for, include your hobbies, but make sure they are relevant to the position. Lastly, resumes should always lead up to the current time.


4. Not tailoring your resume to the job you’re applying for

When using your resume for multiple different job applications, you can’t let your resume fall stagnant. Making adjustments to fit the position will show recruiters that you are interested in the job. Think, “Will this sentence help me to get the job?” Try using keywords from the job description to appeal to the recruiter.


5. Overusing repetitive words and phrases

Those continually repeated words or phrases are not going to highlight what makes you unique. Similar to not tailoring your resume for the job, it may show recruiters that you didn’t put into the effort for their application process. An easy way to change up your words is by using a thesaurus, but don’t use words that don’t fit your vocabulary.


6. Not choosing your format or design wisely

Less is usually more. Keep your resume simple, clean, and easy to read. Even if it seems like there is a lot of white space, embrace it. Templates may be helpful, but make sure to choose one that is not too elaborate or frequently used. An overly creative resume may be valid for a graphic designer, but not an accountant. Creative resumes may make it hard for recruiters to find information on your resume. To present your information clearly to your audience, use bullet points. Don’t forget to be aware of where you locate your contact information. If it is not easy to find, recruiters may toss your resume aside.


7. Saving and exporting incorrectly

Don’t send your resume in a format that requires specific software to open, save and send your resume as a PDF. A PDF guarantees that your format, fonts, and more stay the same, no matter what type of device used to open the document. Also, sending a document as a PDF doesn’t allow others to edit the material.



Are you prepared for what an employer might learn about you if they run your name through a search engine or social media? Read How to Present Yourself online While Job-Hunting.