August 23, 2018 6:10 AM

Resume Mistakes That Drive Recruiters over the Edge

Okay, so perhaps over the edge is a little extreme but there’s no doubt that in your time as a recruiter or hiring manager you have come across some of these mistakes and felt like bashing your head against the desk. Yes, these are the mistakes that make you question your sanity and reaffirm the belief that recruitment is a calling, not a career choice. Otherwise, how else could you survive in the industry?


It’s all over the place

The resume lands in your inbox or your desk and your first thought is ‘what on Earth is this?’ It’s all over the place and by that we mean it’s incredibly messy. There was no template used, or if there was, it was the worst resume template ever. Sections are in the wrong place, and the spacing or font size is inconsistent. Basically it’s a mess.

But even more frustrating is the resume that initially looks good but on closer inspection actually has typos and some serious editing issues. Why do some candidates think it’s okay to spend only twenty minutes creating a document that could land them a job that could pay ALL their bills?


It’s quirky

Oh yay, another cover letter on funky paper or worse, one that has quirky additions that don’t belong on a professional document. Those vines on the cover really don’t make a difference, do they?

And that photo of the candidate on holiday? Yeah that’s not going to get anyone hired now, is it? Professionalism is the name of the game, but some folks just don’t get it.


It’s crammed onto one page

Whoever coined the myth that all resumes should be on one page needs to take a long hard look at themselves. It’s because of you that candidates the world over now shrink their fonts to a minuscule size in an effort to create the ‘perfect’ one-page resume.

Sure, recruiters and hiring managers love to see short and easy-to-read resumes but not at the cost of their eyesight. But can you really dump it just because the font is too small? What if it’s your superstar candidate? Out with the magnifying glass it is then.


Your candidate bullets everything

And by bullet we mean they think that every single piece of information is worthy of a bullet point all of its own. Bullet points are there to highlight important information and to make it easier for anyone reading it (that’s us!) to find said information.

But when a candidate decides that everything needs a bullet point, it totally defeats the purpose of them. Enough with the bullet points already people!


Missing information

We all know that recruiters have several superpowers, but unfortunately, mindreading isn’t one of them. This is why it’s just ever so slightly annoying when a candidate leaves out some super-relevant information on their resume.

mind reading missing information

Qualifications, work experience, references are all pretty terrible omissions to make, but they are nothing compared to the single most awful omission possible; no contact information. Yes, you’ve found your rockstar candidate, but oh look, they forgot to leave an email address or contact number! Sacrilege.


Irrelevant objective statements

An objective statement is a nice sentiment as it gives the hiring manager or recruiter an idea of what the candidate is looking for. However, it’s not the greatest feeling in the world when you receive a resume that has an objective statement such as ‘looking for a role in a multinational company’ when you work for a local startup.

In fact, it’s probably better if candidates just leave these off the resume entirely. If they send you a resume their objective is clear; they want to work for you.


Too much jargon … or not enough

A resume needs to be easy to read and quite often we recruiters aren’t as clued-in about the technical terms relevant to a role as the candidate may themselves be. Sure, we know the keywords (more on that in a second) and the correct terminology for the job requirements, but we don’t want to scan a resume that is overloaded with jargon that really isn’t necessary.

On the other hand, we also don’t like to see a candidate whose resume has none of the relevant keywords for the role. If the job requires a candidate that is proficient in writing JavaScript code then the word Java or code should probably appear somewhere on the resume, right?


Cutesy email addresses

So the candidate has all the required skills, has some amazing work experience, and pretty much seems like they could be a great fit for the role. They even crafted an excellent resume, but then you come to the contact details and realize that it’s just too hard to take or seriously.

We all have those embarrassing email addresses we created back when we were at school, but it’s oh so easy to get a new one that’s purely for professional use. After all, they’re free!


From yellow cover letters to the wrong objective statements, we recruiters have seen it all. Thankfully though, most candidates are getting quite good at creating a professional resume, so we don’t see as many of these error-strewn resumes as we once did. But perhaps that’s also because we’re getting better at targeting the right candidates by using the right tools. Tools like the ones we run here at vsource!

So if you’re looking to improve your targeting and zero in on those rockstar candidates, you know what to do. Drop us a line, and we’ll help you find the right hire for your vacant role. We can’t promise anything in relation to those cutesy email addresses though; they’re everywhere!

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