Resumes are truly living documents that should be edited with care and updated frequently. In my tips for good resume writing I talk a lot about what to include and the mindset that needs to be taken when writing a resume. Now let’s talk about what NOT to include on a resume. When managers and recruiters look at resumes they often times look for reasons not to consider the candidate or what we call “red flags”. You want to reduce as many red flags as possible. Remember that during the application/interview process you are being judged. That being said, you want the hiring team to judge you based on your knowledge, skills and abilities…not on who you are as a person.
- Keep it professional. The only personal items you need to include are your home address, phone number and email address. Anything beyond that and you could create the impression that you are immature and unprofessional
- Do not list hobbies. There is no need, it’s nobody’s business and it could be used to screen you out of the running for the position. For example, let’s say one of your hobbies is snowboarding, there are many people who snow ski who dislike snowboarding and snowboarders in general…this could be used against you.
- The resume should be no longer than 3 pages’ tops. Anything beyond that is too excessive. Even if you have an extensive job history it may show that you have jumped around a lot which is typically a turn off to the people screening your resume…this brings me to my next point…
- Do NOT put your date of birth on your resume. This can and will be used against you especially if you are older.
- You can include that you have a high school diploma but do NOT include your high school graduation year…for the same reasons as above.
- I’ve seen some resumes that have pictures of the applicants…no need to include that…you could be judged based on appearance.
- Day to day activities in your job experience. You just want to list accomplishments…no need to include basic day to day activities.
- Lastly, avoid spelling errors and make sure you have your dates of employment accurate.