Millions of people lost their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic, so job hunting has become a very competitive task. Many people started their job search by updating and improving their resume to stand out from other candidates. But, in their eagerness to find a new job, they can make mistakes. Here are the mistakes you should avoid to make your job hunting a success during the virus.
Don’t Include a Picture
Your resume is supposed to be an informational document of your professional profile. For most professions, how you look isn’t relevant because it doesn’t impact whether or not you can do the job. Only in some cases, like if you are a model, actor, or any other profession where your face is part of the job, you should include it. But for other careers, like front end developer and STEM professions, your looks don’t matter.
Also, in the US, the fight for diversity and inclusion is an ongoing struggle. When you include a picture in your resume, you could be risking biases from employers. And the recruiter doesn’t have to be racist for this to happen. Many people have what is called unconscious biases.
Unrelated Job Experience and Courses
Sometimes we make the mistake of including our experiences since we started working in our teenage years. But that will only make the resume look too crowded and longer than we want. Include only the experience that is related to the position you are applying to. With education, certification, and courses, you should apply the same rules.
For example, if you are applying for a full stack developer role, the employer probably won’t need to know about that cooking course you took two years ago. Only include information that matters, like which programming language you are fluent in or what previous developer jobs you’ve had. And if you have too many relevant experiences, choose the most recent and the ones that better showcase your skillset.
Outdated Contact Information
You may think this mistake is a no-brainer, but many people make it mostly because they use previous versions of their resume and just updated some parts. Many times they don’t realize the contact information is outdated too. Make sure you put the right phone number, address, and email.
Also, it has become common in today’s digital transformation to include social media profiles on your resume. You can include your LinkedIn or Instagram profiles. That way, employers can review them and get a better idea of who you are. They are doing that anyway; 70% of employers look at candidates’ social media profiles before hiring them.
Your resume will be the first contact a potential employer will have with you. And what would a resume with grammatical errors say about you as a professional? It will probably say you are sloppy, don’t pay attention to detail, and don’t take your job seriously. When updating your resume or writing it from scratch, you should double and triple-check everything to make sure it doesn’t have any mistakes.
You can also make formatting errors like adding too many colors or making it look, in simple words, messy. In this case, less is more. You should aim to make a resume that looks professional with clean lines and neutral colors. That is unless you are a digital marketing or UX designer, in which case can get a little more creative with your resume.
More than One Page
Another rookie mistake is, as mentioned before, to want to include everything in your resume. Every working experience you’ve had in your life and every skill you can think of. But that will probably make your resume longer than one page. And most employers and recruiters spend around 7.4 seconds looking at a resume before discarding them, which means they will never even reach the second page.
Instead, be concise and only include relevant information so you can maintain the one-page format. And everything else that was left out mention it when you get called for an interview. In interviews, you can talk about as many experiences and skills as you want.
Including Salary Requirements
Including a salary requirement on your resume could put off potential employers before they even read about your qualifications. It is better to leave it out entirely and mention it in a cover letter. Also, the salary is something that you talk about in interviews. And it makes more sense because the employer will already know a little bit about you and your background and can consider if you are worth what your salary requirements are.
Lying on your resume will only get you so far. You will probably land at least the first interview. But eventually, one way or another, your employer will figure out that you lie about your qualifications. It can be something like lying about knowing a second language, using software, or having done an online course or certification. And when you have to apply the supposed skill, you’ll probably fail.
It is better to be completely honest when you talk about your experience and abilities. Besides, employers prefer people that are honest when they don’t know something. It shows a lot about your character, like you have good work ethics.
Not Giving Enough Details
Finally, the last mistake to avoid is not giving enough detail about your previous experiences. When listing professional experiences, you should explain a little bit about what your responsibilities were and what were your accomplishments in those positions. You can also include what value you provided for the company in each past experience.
You should avoid including a picture in your resume because you take the risk of suffering from biases. Don’t fill your resume with unrelated experiences, courses, or any other information that doesn’t have anything to do with the position you are applying for.
Remember to update your contact information and include some social media profiles. And you should also avoid putting salary requirements, lying, making it more than one page, and not giving enough details about previous job positions.