Applying for jobs can be a daunting and stressful task. One of the most helpful things you can do to boost your prospects is applying to jobs with a stellar resume. A poor resume can be a huge hurdle to companies getting back to you. But what exactly makes a resume bad? Our hiring experts at Nova Staffing are going to explain some of the most common and most fatal resume mistakes you should avoid!


Spelling & Grammar Errors

This is probably the most obvious and common resume tip, yet you’d be surprised by the number of resumes we receive at our hiring agency that are riddled with them. While recruiters try to make allowances for people that aren’t native English speakers, it’s still important to try to reduce these are much as possible. There are a ton of online tools you can use these days to check spelling and grammar, so run your resume through one of these before sending it off. This is especially important if you’re applying to a job where speaking and writing skills are crucial.


Not Specific Enough

A common mistake people make is trying to make their resumes appealing to all sorts of companies and jobs, and this often results in it being vague and non-specific. Don’t simply list your past employment and experience- go into detail explaining what role you played, any specific tasks you managed, and skills you learned! The more details you put in, the more drawn in recruitment agencies will be.


Too Generic

Not all resumes are the same. In fact, every single one you send out should be slightly different! Resumes should be tailored towards each job and company you’re applying to. Generic resumes won’t catch anyone’s eye and will probably end up in the recycling bin. Employers want to feel you took the time to actually read the job posting and prepared for it- not that you job sent out the same basic resume for multiple jobs you stumbled upon. Take the extra time and customize your resumes to really wow them.


Wrong Length

If you Google “how long should a resume be,” you’ll get varying answers. Some industries just require more room to explain your accomplishments and skills. On average, resumes should be 1-2 pages. Don’t force yourself to cut important info about yourself to squeeze onto one page. Nor should you ramble on about everything you’ve ever done over five pages. When writing your resume, ask yourself, “will this help me land an interview?” A resume is all about selling yourself, so include info that helps you do that.


Poorly Formatted

This one is a bit more subjective, but formatting is important when it comes to resumes. Most hiring agencies only have a short window of time to review each application. You want your resume to stand out but also be easy to read. Resumes that are visually too busy with walls of text won’t be as appealing as ones clearly laid out with bullet points.  


Includes Incorrect Info

Above all else, your resume should be accurate and honest. Of course, there are ways you can take mundane jobs and tasks to make them sound more appealing. However, you should always be truthful. You might think fudging past experience will land you the job, but in our experience, it always comes back to bite people. You also want to make sure your contact info is correct. The last thing you want to do is apply for a bunch of jobs but don’t leave them a way to get in touch with you.   


Only Includes Hard Skills

Hard skills are abilities that let you tackle job-specific tasks. While these are great, and should absolutely be included, don’t forget about soft skills as well. Soft skills are non-technical skills that include things like critical thinking, time management, communication, etc. Chances are when you’re applying for a certain job, most applicants will have all the same hard skills. That’s why soft skills are so important- they’re what will set you apart. Our hiring experts at Nova Staffing often turn to soft skills when making final hiring decisions, so be sure to include them!  


Are you looking for a new career or job? Visit our online job board or contact us today! Nova Staffing has a team of hiring experts looking to fill job openings in various industries and can’t wait to hear from you.  


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