Figuring out what to put and how to phrase things on your resume can be intimidating. Sometimes the most difficult part is keeping it one page without looking too cluttered.
To make this easier, here are 4 things to eliminate:
1. Objective Statement
Usually an objective statement starts out by saying “I’m looking for a job that…” When a hiring manager looks at your resume, they want to know why they should hire you, not what you want in a job. Use this space to your advantage by either making more space for your experience and skills or writing a condensed version of your elevator pitch to summarize why they should want you.
2. Irrelevant Information
Remember: quality over quantity. Employers don’t want to spend more than on average 6 seconds to review your resume. Remove all of the experience that is more than a decade old or doesn’t relate to your career path. Use the valuable real estate on your resume for experience, education, and skills that show how you qualify for that specific position.
3. Skills Clichés
Get a little more “creative” with your skills! For instance, including the word “creative” under your list of skills may be a great way to describe your personality, but so many other applicants may think the same about themselves. Instead, showcase how creative you are. Your cover letter is a great place to write a narrative or create a personal website/video resume and include the URL in the email sent to the employer or on your resume. Same goes for “passionate” and “excellent oral and written communication skills.” Demonstrate these traits. Don’t just list them.
Another cliché is using the phrase “responsible for.” This sounds like you did these tasks just because you were paid to – no more, no less. Instead, use “managed,” “completed,” or a similar verb that expresses leadership or initiative.
4. “References available upon request”
Don’t include a list of references or the statement, “references available upon request” on your resume. We all know you have references. Nowadays, it’s expected, so use that valuable space for additional relevant information or white space. Instead, create a separate document with a list of references and their contact information. Have it ready to email or hand out. The hiring manager will request it when ready.
Your resume is the most important document in your job search! Make sure it’s mistake-free, easy-to-read, and relevant to your career. Check out more tips to write the perfect resume (and cover letter) here.