You have written and rewritten your resume and have the look and content all worked out. Now be sure to check out these important dos and don’ts before you start applying for jobs:
Let’s start with the Don’ts
- Don’t commit spelling and grammar errors. Nothing gets a resume deleted faster than grammar errors. Be sure to run spelling and grammar check and try to have a friend or family member proofread it. Even better, run your resume through an online proofreading program or resume-checker.
- Don’t use photos and graphics. These items can be distracting and take up valuable space on your resume. Instead, utilize clear and succinct language to sell your skills, abilities and experience.
- Don’t neglect quantifiable data. If you met and/or surpassed goals, made money and/or cut costs – exclaim that loud and clear on your resume. Employers will want to know the specifics.
- Don’t rely on clichés to sell yourself or your accomplishments. Terms like “dynamic” and “self-starter” are overused and don’t tell the reviewer what you have specifically done.
- Don’t sacrifice paper quality when you intend to print. Use a high-quality white or ivory bond paper and black ink. Resume paper in the 24-32 lb. range is easily accessible in retail stores.
And now the Do’s
- Do be 100% honest about your responsibilities and accomplishments. Remember, your references have agreed to vouch for you and being true to your word is your greatest personal asset.
- Do spell out words instead of abbreviating. Keyword scanning software will most likely identify a term like “accountant” but will not always identify expressions like “acct.”.
- Do keep it simple and reader friendly in terms of fonts. Arial and Times New Roman are always safe choices.
- Do present employment dates and other information accurately. You don’t want your first impression to be one of suspicion.
- Do avoid using articles (“a,” “the”) or pronouns (“I”). These slow the reviewer down, take away from the actual accomplishment and add to resume length.