The only thing worse than not getting an offer is…

Getting an offer and having it rescinded because you misrepresented something on your resume. The reason I am writing this post today is because it has come to my attention on several occasions, just today, where people have blatantly lied about their dates or experience on their resumes. There are several ways that recruiters can cross check your information and see if you are telling us the truth aside from a background check:

1) We check to see if you have applied for prior jobs in the past. If something looks fishy, we will cross-check your most recent resume against prior resumes you have submitted to see if you show a different title or different dates on your resume. 
2) We cross-check your Linkedin profile against your resume. Often times they do not look the same and when we catch a discrepancy, it can give us pause.
3) We also Google you. Sometimes this will lead us to Facebook or other websites that might give us conflicting information from what your resume tells us.
Regardless, any type of discrepancy on your resume be it dates, employer, title, education etc… can lead to you not being hired, having a job offer rescinded or worse, being black-listed by those who know you in the community. 

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Top 5 Do’s & Don’ts on your Resume

DO:

  1. Add your Linkedin URL to your resume if you have a well put together Linkedin profile and recommendations on your profile
  2. Have a summary of what makes you qualified (objectives are obsolete for the most part in today’s market) listed at the top of your resume
  3. Have a well formatted resume with: Position Title and Company listed on the left, dates aligned on the right and experience bulleted out
  4. List strong adverbs, such as facilitated, managed, organized etc… followed by your accomplishments, including where you have increased PEP (Productivity, Efficiency & Performance) of your past organizations
  5. Spell check your resume and have someone else look it over for grammatical, punctuation and/or formatting errors
DO NOT:

  1. List your reference contact information on your resume
  2. Include a picture or any bizarre graphics (unless you are in graphic design or related field)
  3. Use ALL CAPS or all italics to write your resume
  4. Lie about ANYTHING on your resume because it can all be verified
  5. Use different fonts and/or different sizes in the same sections. For example, if your sections titles such as “Experience” or “Skills” are in size 18 Ariel and bold, then that should be the same for every section head. The same goes for the font and size used for your bullet points.

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5 Things to Avoid on your Resume

1) Generic statements. Using a generic statement, such as “customer oriented,” without backing that statement up with a result can hurt your resume. Anyone can say they are “customer oriented,” but unless they can back that statement up with evidence to support it, those are just words. Instead of using a generic statement such as “customer oriented”, use a specific example that illustrates how customer oriented you are, ie. “Achieved 100% customer satisfaction over 6 month period by listening to and understanding customer’s needs…”

2) Objectives. Objectives are rarely used anymore, and are becoming obsolete in many resume situations. Instead of using an objective, try replacing your objective with a “Summary of Qualifications” or “Achievements” section. If a resume is done well, it should already be clear to the employer what your objective is without having to state your objective outright.

3) Extraneous white space. One of the most common errors I see on a resume is the inefficient use of page space. Think of the page space on your resume as valuable real estate. Every space on your resume should be used to make a case for why an employer should hire you, and should not be wasted. Be especially careful of having too wide of margins. Having wide margins can  leave that valuable space unused!

4) Lengthy paragraphs. Employers do not take the time to read your resume, rather they skim. The same is true of lengthy paragraphs. In order to avoid an employer missing something important on your resume, use bullet points to highlight significant information, and to break apart your resume more clearly.

5) Choppy alignment. EVERYTHING on your resume should be properly aligned, especially your dates and employers. I often come across resumes where nothing is aligned or some of the resume is aligned and then the rest is all over the place. This does not work! You need to make your resume visually appealing and easy to read. Setting proper alignment can help do this. When you do not properly align your dates and/or other important information on your resume, it can cause your resume to look sloppy. Take the time to set the necessary tabs to make everything line up appropriately and come across more clearly.



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