15 Things You Must Remove From Your Resume Immediately If You Want To Change Careers

At least one of these things is the reason why your resume always ends up in the Trash. It is important to remove them from your resume if you don’t want to keep getting turned down.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but resume requirements are changing every year. There used to be a time where you had to add Microsoft Word and Excel as skills in order for you to get a job but now, it is assumed that you know that. No recruiter is impressed by it.

Then writing out your referees came and was quickly replaced with “referees available on request”. Now even that is frowned at.

As a career coach, people ask me all the time to take a look at their resume and give them feedback. So I thought to put everything here so that I have a resource to point people to and help anyone who is lucky enough to be directed here by the god’s of the internet after random search.

This information isn’t only for unemployed people. It is for you if you’re not being paid well or challenged at your current job, and you’re preparing to look for a new job. Or transition careers in the near future.

Your resume in your current job surely can’t get you your next job. You need to constantly update it. Because adding more skills and certification to your arsenal is just as important as removing irrelevant work experience you got 15years ago.

That said,

Here Are 15 Important Things You Must Remove From Your Resume If You Don’t Want It Tossed Into The Trash.

1.)    A generic file name

Your resume should be named your first name and last name e.g. Ola Okotie Resume. Not “myresume”, “my resume final”, “updated resume 8” or “document47”. It helps the recruiter to be organized. This one mistake alone has made people’s resumes get lost. A lot of people apply for the same job and you don’t expect the hiring team to search through junk files to finally find your resume. Stop getting in your own way and rename your resume file right now. Don’t wait till later.

2.) An unprofessional email address

I shouldn’t have to say this but here it goes:  you need a professional email address. Your nickname crazybabe88@gmail.com is getting in the way. You don’t expect anyone to take you seriously with that email address do you? Just use your first name and last name. If that’s unavailable, add a number or two. Keep it as simple as possible.

3.)    Information on Your Resume That Doesn’t Match Your Online Profile.

I don’t know why people don’t pay attention to this. Recruiters will always check you out online after reviewing your resume. It just takes typing in your name on social media or Google. If what they see on your online profiles (especially LinkedIn) doesn’t match what you sent on your resume, they’ll question your honesty.

If you are busy trolling people anywhere online you’ll be found and that “people skills” you said you had on your resume will be a lie. Then they’d quickly start thinking maybe everything on your resume is a lie and into the trash it goes! Remember that the internet never forgets. Clean up your digital footprints.

4.) Your photo

It doesn’t matter how much you spent taking the most profession headshot. Save it for your LinkedIn profile because it doesn’t belong in your resume.

5.) Details about your life

No matter how great your personal life is, it is best not to mention it in your resume. Yes you have the sweetest 5 year old who you take for ballet lesson 5 times a week. That’s cute. But not in your resume. What if the hiring manager feels that ballet lessons are going to get in the way of work.

6.) Your address

Where you live is almost always irrelevant. Remove it from your resume for your sake. Let your hiring manager see how qualified you are before discovering where you live far away from the office. If you are looking at a remote position and live in a different time zone, your location might make the hiring team think you won’t be able to meet up. If you must add your address (because some jobs ask for that), do not give specific details like the house number for your security.

7.) Objectives

An objective just takes up space you could be using for important work experience.

8.) Third-person voice

Oh my world! For whatever reason, some people write their resume in the third person. I’m not sure if it’s a plot to sound important or just plain ignorance. As a matter of fact, don’t use your name or pronouns.

“Ola reduced overhead cost by introducing —–” WRONG!

“She reduced overhead cost by introducing —–” WRONG

“Reduced overhead cost by introducing —–” CORRECT!

Besides, your name is already at the top of the resume. The hiring manager has surely seen it so there’s no need to repeat it when referring to your accomplishments.

9.)    Irrelevant work experience

Adding to your resume is just as important as removing from it. You don’t have to include every job including part-time/volunteer work you did 20 years ago.  Only include work that shows how your experience directly relates to the job you want. Hiring managers want to see if you have experience working in that role or not. And if you have, they want to see what you were able to accomplish.

10.) Hobbies

Save your hobbies for when you are being interviewed. It does not belong on your resume and only takes space you would have used for more important information

11.) “References Available Upon Request”

Hiring managers already know they can request for the contact information of your referees. So if they need referees, they’ll surely ask you.

12.) Lots of Spelling and/or Grammar Mistakes. 

An error filled resume will make the recruiter toss it into the trash fast. Going through your resume for grammatical errors is one way your family/friend can help you. If you don’t have anyone to help, use grammarly or hire proofreader to help out. Reading it over and over again will make you blind to some of the errors.

13.) Blocks of Text

Each job experience on your resume should be followed by 3-5 bullet points of explaining your responsibilities and achievements while there. Most recruiters look at a resume at a glance to see if it is worth their time or not. Using blocks of text might just bury important information and make them toss your resume aside. It is in your best interest to steer clear of block texts and use a lot of white space in your resume.

14.)  Colorful Designs and Fancy fonts

Use readable texts. Too big fonts will make the hiring team think you are trying to fill up the pages on your resume and too small fonts will make them stress their eyes to read. You don’t need to make it colorful or use fancy fonts. Your resume might be scanned electronically as some companies use special software for indexing resumes. If you’re using hard-to-read fonts, the software may not pick up important keywords and your resume could get tossed onto the trash.

15.) Unnecessary pages

It’s best to limit your resume to about one or two pages (3 pages if you absolutely need to because of your wealth of RELEVANT experience and qualifications). An unnecessarily long CV with irrelevant details is always a bad idea. Hiring managers don’t have the time or patience to read through irrelevant stuff and they might just toss it into the trash without getting to the important part. Keep it simple.

Final Words

Preparing answers to interview questions or even the interview outfit will be unnecessary if you don’t remove these things from your resume. Use this as a guide to editing your resume if you want to change careers.

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