Your resume speaks for you. Whether you’re moving to another company or convincing investors to fund your own startup, having a great resume always strikes a chord with recruiters and they look forward to meeting, funding or hiring those with an excellent resume.
I have been in the recruiting and HR profession for over two decades. Recruitment has changed a lot over the years along with the label change from HR to talent acquisition. Over this period of time, I have scanned—I am sorry I lost count—a million resumes and I have seen the same mistakes appear over and over again.
So, I feel it’s high time I should speak up, as the onus lies upon me to acquaint you with you what you should not include in your resume. Take down notes, fellas. Here are few things which I feel should be tied with a stone and thrown off into the sea or respective rivers in your city.
- OBJECTIVE: If Google were not there, I feel there would have been no ‘objective’ in any resume. Almost 95% people copy their objective from other people’s resumes and when they have to explain it, they don’t have any idea what it is. The point is, it’s your objective. It should speak loud and clear about you and your aspirations. Which is why you CANNOT just copy it. You should be able to recite your objective even when someone wakes you up in mid-sleep.
So if you cannot write an original objective, it’s as good as not including it in the resume. Because everyone knows the origin of, “IT professional looking for opportunities which will allow me to leverage my blah-blah skills.”
- Weaknesses: A resume is not just a document. It’s the key to make a first good impression. And if you are including your weaknesses, why do you think your recruiter will accept you with all these listed faults?
But nobody is perfect, you say? Agree. Which is why if you want to mention your weaknesses then reverse it and call it “Areas of Improvement.” Avoid using the term “weakness.”
- Hobbies: Few people mention Internet surfing as a hobby! How can internet surfing be a hobby? Cooking, Music, Dancing. Why do you have to mention these? It’s your resume, not your FB timeline. Even if you find it extremely important to add your hobbies, then include the ones which are relevant to the job profile for which you are applying.
- Salary Details: Please never mention your salary details in your resume, it’s the most unprofessional thing to do. Whenever I see a resume with salary details mentioned—I personally do not process those resumes—I think that person is more concerned about the money rather than the company or his/her job profile.
- Marital Status: Why would you mention this? No one is interested if you are married or single—you will not be selected on this criteria.
- Nationality: There is no need to mention nationality in your resume. If you are applying for international jobs, only then mention it.
- COPY PASTE: Unless you are very sure that you and your friend are never going to land in the same company, do not ever copy paste the contents of a resume. HR professionals always keep a database of resumes and they will almost instantly know when and where you have copied.
- References: Do not mention references’ name; if asked only then provide these details. Adding a whole new table of your “BEST FRIENDS” in your previous companies will only add to the length of your resume. Instead, you can add one line—“References available upon request.” And it’s done!
I hope this will help you create a better resume and always remember—“short and to the point” things should be mentioned in a resume. No one is interested in reading 5-7 pages.
Author: Rajat Bansal is the Head of Talent Acquisition team at Quovantis Technologies. He has over nineteen years of experience in recruiting.