Thursday, July 5, 2012

Warning: 5 Resume Mistakes That May Sabotage Your Chances

By guest blogger Kat Krull

Resume mistakes can cost you important job opportunities. After all, a resume is often the first (and perhaps only) chance you have to make an impression on a hiring manager or recruiter.

Don’t want your resume to end up in the trash? Here are the top five mistakes you should avoid when drafting a resume:

1. Not recognizing what the employer needs

Your resume should not be all about you. Yes, you need to highlight your important skills, but it also needs to show an employer why you’re a good fit for the job opportunity. Do your research on the industry and the organization, and compare your skills and qualifications to the job description in order to tailor your resume accordingly. It also helps to do a “SWOT” analysis of their needs: Identify their Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities for growth, and Threats to growth.

2. Lack of focus

Your resume must be focused exclusively on the job opportunity for which you are applying. Remove skills, education, and experience that do not directly relate. Highlight your career progression and transferable skills.

3. Poor structure

A logical progression is essential for your resume to make a great impression. Keep important information at the top so a busy hiring manager can quickly scan it.

4. Difficult to read

Graphics, fancy fonts, and industry jargon can make your resume hard for an employer to easily digest. Tell your most important accomplishments in bullet form in concise sentences. Large blocks of text and a small amounts of white space can give anyone a headache! Plus, you only have about six seconds to make an impression -- so make it count!

5. Lack of quality content

Show the employer what you’ve achieved and why you’re special compared to other candidates. Demonstrate leadership capabilities by highlighting various roles or extracurricular activities. Don’t use generic, vague terms -- such as “responsible for” or “managed” -- when describing accomplishments. Instead, use numbers whenever possible and describe how you excelled in the position.

What other resume mistakes can sabotage your chances at landing a new job?

Kat Krull is the Marketing Manager of Resunate, a job application tool that tailors and optimizes your resume for specific jobs. You can find Kat and Resunate on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

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For resume and cover letter tips, check out the paNASH Style blog entries on resumes and cover letters 

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Title: Resume Mistakes That May Sabotage Your Chances
Description: Resume mistakes can cost you important job opportunities. Here are the top five mistakes you should avoid when drafting a resume.
Keywords: resume mistakes, job search, optimizing your resume, tailoring your resume, resume readability

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