Top 10 Resume Mistakes

Here are the top 10 resume writing mistakes. To learn about the top 10 tips to writing a successful resume, read our blog here. Read our next blog: Why You Should Write Your Own Resume.

1.    Using too small of a font size.

Use a font size of 11-12 in Aerial or Calibri. Do not go smaller than size 11.


2.    Resume is too busy.

Recruiters spend on average 6 seconds reviewing a resume. Do not hide the most important facts by having too much writing. Keep it simple and clean.


3.    Resume is too short.

Trying to cram everything onto 1 page makes your resume hard to read. It is better to go on to a second or even third page. The more experience you have, the longer your resume will be.


4.    Listing soft skills on the resume.

List only transferable and hard skills on the resume. Soft skills should be demonstrated during the interview.


5.    Having a professional summary.

The professional summary is outdated and recruiters do not have time to read through and find the important information they need.


6.    Not quantifying your accomplishments.

List 3-5 bullet points of quantifiable accomplishments for each work experience. Try to put numbers on as many accomplishments as you can. For example, scheduled 10 meetings per week or published 5 articles per week.


7.    Using a complicated resume format.

There are a lot of resume formats on the internet and it can be hard to determine which one to use. Stick to a simple format. While you may think certain resume formats look ‘professional’; if they are too busy then they will not serve you well in the application process.


8.    Having icons, unnecessary symbols or fancy graphics.

This ties into the previous point. You should not have any complex symbols or graphics on your resume because the online application tracking system (ATS) may flag your resume and immediately discard it. An example of this is using a telephone or email icon with your contact information. An exception to this rule is if you are directly emailing your resume to a person, then this is not a problem.


9.    Including references available upon request.

You do not need to include this on your resume anymore. If they want your references, they will ask for them.


10.  Hired a resume writer.

Your resume won’t authentically reflect you if someone else writes it. Hiring a resume writer won’t help you get the job. The real problem isn’t your resume; it is that 80% of jobs are gotten via referral. This is not to say that you don’t need a well written resume. It’s just that it’s not as important as you think and you don’t need to spend money on someone else writing it for you.