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5 Ways You Could Be Ruining Your Résumé Without Realizing It

By Robert Half International

1. You don’t proofread

Three out of four executives interviewed said just one or two typos in a résumé would remove applicants from consideration for a job. Unfortunately, spell-checkers don’t catch words that may be spelled correctly but used incorrectly: For example, if your most recent position was as a corporate blogger, your software may not raise the red flag if you mistakenly list yourself as a “logger.” In addition to reading through the résumé yourself, you should also have someone else review it to catch any errors that you may have overlooked.

2. You ignore potential red flags

For instance, one of the biggest red flags is a gap in employment that goes unexplained. Rather than make a hiring manager wonder why you were away from the workplace for an extended period of time, use your cover letter to address why you weren’t working and how you continued to advance your career through volunteer opportunities, professional development courses or other means.

3. You exaggerate your qualifications

Even a small fib can prove harmful. For instance, if you’re working toward a degree that you plan to complete by the summer, don’t say you already have the credential. If you think that a hiring manager won’t try to confirm your qualifications, think again.

4. You don’t explain yourself

If you say you are “knowledgeable” about HTML, an employer will not know if you use it every day to code Web pages or if you simply know that the acronym stands for Hyper Text Markup Language. Instead of using a vague term, you should explain how you’ve used your knowledge of HTML for certain projects or to aid your employer, how long you’ve been using it and if you possess any relevant certifications.

5. You’re too wordy

You might not want to list every accomplishment, skill or project you’ve worked on. Hiring managers appreciate brevity, so cull the information you include, focusing on the aspects of your work history that are most relevant to the job for which you’re applying.

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