In life, some rewards come without risk. Take your dream job for example. If you want to land the position you’ve been dreaming about, you’ll need to make a great first impression.
When you are applying for jobs, it all comes down to your resume. Every little detail makes a big difference. For example, a small mistake can put you out of the running for the job you are qualified for.
In this article, we’ll walk you through the biggest mistakes you need to avoid, from simple things like typos to big ones like leaving out relevant unpaid experience. Some of these mistakes may surprise you, especially since they are easy errors to make. Here are five resume mess-ups you need to avoid, brought to you by LinkedIn, our sponsor.
1. So you know how to avoid spelling mistakes. But how do you do that?
Taking advantage of some of the free online editors is a good way to make sure you’re not making any silly errors. For example, Typely is a free, easy and reliable tool to edit your resume, essay, creative writing and more.
All you have to do is visit the site, open the editor, clear the example text (which you’ll see on the left side of the image below) and you’re ready to go. Here’s what the website looks like:
Type errors of all kinds, from typography errors to clichés, redundancies, curses, consistency and more. Not only that, it also analyzes your writing statistics, such as characters, words, reading time, reading difficulty and vocabulary. (Most interestingly, it can analyze your emotion to tell you whether you’re coming across as positive or negative.)
Plus, you can use Typely to manage documents or export them to Google Docs. There’s also the option of generating a PDF report or using a text-to-speech program to see how your words sound to your readers. Overall, you are getting a ton of useful features without spending a dime.
You may also want to check out Grammarly, an all-encompassing spelling and grammar checker.
2. Don’t use old and unprofessional email addresses
If you’re still using the same address as when you were 12, it’s time to stop. Create a new inbox for your professional needs with your first and last name, so people know it’s you.
If you have something vague like firstname.lastname@example.org, it’s going to confuse recruiters. They may also wonder if you are a bot account rather than a legitimate job applicant.
Plus, it can be a little embarrassing for your boss to see your personal email. If you’ve ever posted this online, they may do an Internet search and potentially uncover some unpleasant places you’ve visited.
Think for a moment about any website you signed up for with this email. Chances are, at least one of them may be awkward to explain to the employer.
Even if not, it was probably involved in a data breach of some sort (they’re so common, almost no one is immune). This is another way your boss can see where you are online. Even if he doesn’t embarrass you, it can still seem like an invasion of privacy. Tap or click here for a quick and free way to tell if your email has ever been leaked in a data breach.
3. Don’t Write a Wall of Text
You can have the best writing in the world. It can broaden your work experience and how it aligns perfectly with the position you are applying for. But if you format that text in a visually unappealing way, a recruiter won’t want to strain their eyes. They might scrap your resume, never being able to know how qualified you are.
So don’t shoot yourself in the foot by writing a long wall of text. If you’re not sure what we mean, think of a wall of text as a long paragraph that goes on. When you look at it as a whole, it’s like a brick wall: solid and impenetrable.
Although it describes the skills and qualifications of the job applicant, it is not easy on the eyes. The distance between the rows is not far enough. Plus, all the lines are the same length, making it look repetitive. Basically, it doesn’t attract the viewer’s eyes at all.
Using the Shift and Tab keys on the keyboard, let’s break this paragraph up a bit. (We also changed the spacing so it aligns to the left, which gives us more breathing room on the right.)