Constructing a resume that will catch the eye of an employer can be tricky. There is a vast number of things to include on your resume which can make it that much more difficult to keep it short, yet effective. Some of the features that used to be essential on a resume are no longer fashionable today and will signal you are an older applicant. To help you create an up-to-date and concise resume, we have created a list of 5 things to keep off a resume.
Hobbies & Interests
Although employers do examine whether candidates are a cultural fit, they do not look for that kind of related information on resumes. At first glance, they are most interested in determining if the candidate is fit for the role. They are rarely impressed by a list of unrelated extracurriculars. Hobbies and interests can be discussed later in the interviews. With that said, it is acceptable to include some degree of personal information but it is optional and recommended to have minimal detail.
Lengthy Chunks of Text
Employers review numerous resumes so chances are they do not want to read a wall of text. They may even skip that resume if that’s the case as it is considered a poorly constructed resume to include lengthy chunks of text. The key is to be as concise as possible and even consider bullet points to help draw the attention of employers to important pieces of information. This will help ensure readability and will minimize the amount of time it will take to scan for experiences that can be linked back to the job description.
Although many employers, hiring managers and recruiters may argue that a career objective is no longer necessary in today’s job market, it can be quite useful on a sales resume. It is widely recommended to switch this out for a professional summary whereas in sales the opposite is favoured. With the variety of sales archetypes out there, having a career objective can help communicate to the person reviewing your resume what your goals are. For example, if you are specifically looking for an outside sales position, make sure you state that at the top of your resume. In other words, keep the professional summary off your resume and instead communicate it during the interview stage!
Work experiences that are from more than 10-15 years ago are better kept off your resume as they are no longer relevant and will only lengthen your resume. Unless you are a recent graduate, this applies to graduation dates as well. Employers care more about details of your recent work experience rather than outdated ones.
Long List of Soft Skills
A common mistake that many candidates make is they devote a section on their resume to a long list of soft skills. More often than not, employers see this as “fluff” which essentially just means unnecessary bits of information as opposed to stating the hard facts. This includes terms that describe a candidate’s character which can be revealed in the interview or training stages.
Author: Bryan Payne is the Chief Talent Scout and Founding Partner at Just Sales Jobs with over 25-years of experience in sales and leading high-performance sales teams. Bryan and his team specialize in recruiting top talent within the Greater Toronto Area to Kitchener Waterloo. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org