Job search sites like Monster.com get a lot of traffic. Rightfully so – they are one of the premier job search sites in the world. To help their visitors, they offer a variety of basic informational tools on job searching, resumes, etc.
Since we here at Everyday Interview Tips pride ourselves on being awesome (with the swagger of a cripple), we like to pick apart their informational articles for funsies while debating whether or not all of the points they make are valid. Not too long ago, Monster came out with an article entitled “Common Resume Blunders.” Let’s look at the points that they make.
Resume Blunders From The Article
- Too Focused on Duties
It is very common for applicants to list of duties rather than list accomplishments. “Used PowerPoint” doesn’t sound as impressive as “Developed worldwide multimedia presentations for leading software company.” Still, don’t forget that large organizations often search for keywords, so while “Used PowerPoint” is a bad bullet point, you may want to plug the word “PowerPoint” in the accomplishment if it is necessary for the job.
- Cruddy Objective Statement
Objective statements are often terrible, so Monster is correct here. Also, you may want to consider a “Professional profile” instead, as they are far more impressive than objective statements could ever be.
- Resume Size
If you are a recent graduate, you likely don’t have a strong enough resume to warrant more than a page. If you are a seasoned worker, you may want to lengthen it to show the employer your vast experience.
- Saying “I”
We have dedicated several articles to this. In general, you should stay away from the word “I.” They are terrible for bullet points and take away from the impact of your writing. Still, in some rare cases a paragraph type of resume may be useful, in which case you will want to use “I” to keep with proper grammar. For 95% of all resumes, however, “I” should not appear.
- Stupidly Irrelevant Information
Let’s say you’ve worked 3 jobs. One you interned with Microsoft. One you worked for a year with Intel. The other you flipped burgers at McDonalds for 6 months. Guess which one doesn’t need to be on your resume? Every word needs to matter. If it is on your resume, it must be impressive.
- Skills Based Resume for No Reason
Skills based resumes are interesting and useful, but not designed for anyone with a work history that makes sense (staying at the same types of work, moving up within the company, moving on to another company in the field, etc.). They should only be used when you have big breaks in your resume or some of the most impressive accomplishments to the employer occurred in the distant, distant past.
- Basic Mistakes
Don’t make any spelling or grammar errors. Check and recheck your resume over and over for any errors. Have someone else read it too, in order to ensure that it is perfect in every way.
Not a bad article. These are some very common mistakes that people make in their resume. In fact, placing irrelevant/unimportant information in the resume is probably the most common mistake that young workers make. Interestingly, some career centers at local colleges teach graduates to put some of this useless information on their resumes, when their resumes would be stronger without it.
For more information on resume blunders, we have a free PDF available for download here. There we go in depth on common resume mistakes and how to fix them.
Take Away Tips
- Don’t make common resume mistakes