En Route: A Career Blog

It’s All in the Details

AUTHOR: Darlene Zambruski
POSTED: January 17, 2012 at 11:52 am

With so many Americans out of work, it’s definitely an employers’ market. Hiring managers and recruiters can afford to be choosy, and with hundreds or thousands of resumes to go through, they’re looking for a reason to reject you.

Don’t give them that chance. Although your background may be impeccable, the details you provide could be painting a negative view of you as a viable candidate. To make certain you’re not sabotaging your chances, keep the following in mind:

Don’t use cute or weird email addresses. For example, an administrative assistance should never use an email that states prettyblonde@email.com or available4fun@email.com. Someone in a fiduciary capacity would be wise to avoid outofcash@email.com. No one should use luv2party or luv2drink. You get the idea. Keep it simple and professional – your first and last name or your initial and last name.

Never use your current company’s email address when you’re looking for a new job. An employer will wonder why you’re taking emails and phone calls from a new employer when you haven’t yet left your current position. It strikes the average person as dishonest, so don’t fall into that trap.

Avoid listing hobbies or interests on a resume. Even if you want to shout to the world that you’re a diehard Trekkie, that info’s going to look downright weird on a resume, especially if you’re competing for a position in management. Never list activities that cause a hiring manager to worry about your health. This would include extreme sports. No one is apt to hire an individual who may be hurt, out of work for extended periods and eat up the company’s health care plan.

Never write a resume in the first person using personal pronouns (my, I, we, etc.). It’s not professional. Always use third person.

Don’t state ‘references are available upon request’ – that’s a given. Also, don’t provide references unless asked for them.

Never include high school education on a resume (unless you’re applying to the federal government). Again, it’s a given that everyone in this country has a high school diploma or a GED.

Don’t include a photo on your resume. The only exception would be if you’re applying for a sales position in which there’s a lot of personal contact with clients. In that case, you’d use a professional looking headshot – no vacation photos.

Don’t include personal info on your resume such as marital status, date of birth, religious affiliation. It’s simply not done in this country.

Never use an objective to open the resume. An objective is telling the hiring manager or recruiter what you want. They don’t care about that. They want to know what you can do for their company. Paint a picture of yourself as the perfect candidate in an outstanding opening summary.

The above are just a few of the many details that could trip you up in your search for a new job. By avoiding these and keeping your resume professional and on point with what you can accomplish, you’ll go a long way toward getting that coveted interview.

Darlene Z.

Darlene Zambruski is a resume writing expert and CPRW (Certified Professional Resume Writer) with more than 13 years of industry experience. She has authored 10,000+ resumes in every industry and at every career level.

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