From the desk of Ramond Walker, Career and Life Development Instructor:
So you have just finished your resume and you are ready to finally shoot it off to your dream company. That is exciting. However, just because your resume is finished, doesn’t mean it’s complete. The tips below will help you to avoid common mistakes most job seekers make when submitting a resume.
Common Grammatical Errors
A good rule of thumb is to review your resume three times on three different days to ensure you didn’t miss anything. Check for errors in dates, job titles, as well as spelling. One really helpful tool I have found to help with this is Grammarly. This neat little app will help you stay error-free in no time.
Only Listing Your Job Duties
The purpose of your resume is not to list your job duties. If every job on your resume simply lists what your duties were, it is vastly incomplete. The number one question every employer wants to be answered on your resume is,”What did you do that no one else has done in each position you held?” The way you answer this question is critical to illustrate your value as a potential employee. Employers are looking for results, not duties. They are wanting to see how your presence made a difference in your previous jobs. For example, writing “Voted top customer service manager for 3 consecutive years by upper-level management” says a lot more about you than “Resolved customers’ service and billing complaints.”
Using the Same Resume for Each Job
One resume does not fit all. Using the same resume for every job you apply to won’t get it anymore. Each job is different and requires different responsibilities. Tailor your resume to each job description instead. One thing I suggest is to review the job description for the job you are applying to first and only list the jobs and experience that is relevant to the requirements of that particular job. Also, match your resume to the words found in the job description. If they are looking for someone experienced in executive leadership management, use those words on your resume if you have experience with it.
Not Highlighting Your Accomplishments
If you have any significant accomplishments or career highlights, these should be specifically sectioned in an area on your resume. This section, typically on the sidebar or top of your resume, is great a way to highlight your achievements. It is sometimes called “Career Highlights” or “Key Accomplishments.” You can also just simply say “Results.” Either way, highlighting your big wins go a long way in getting you a job you love.
Using Your High School Email Address
Your high school years are gone and so should that email you created then be. If you are using the same email you used in high school for a professional job, it may be time to create a new one. This should preferably be your full name, with no special characters or numbers. A professional email should never contain nicknames or anything that could give away your age or something that would cause someone to presume it. For example, firstname.lastname@example.org goes a lot further than email@example.com. Your goal is to remove the biases. Anything that could potentially tip off personal information to an employer can be used against you.
Now go out there and make your resume awesome. And if you discover a new idea that works for you, let me know on Twitter or in the comments below.