Career Resource Center

Top 3 Resume Tips: Avoiding Mistakes & Clichés

You don’t need resume writers to tell you that mistakes such as spelling errors are deadly when it comes to crafting your resume. However, while you probably know not to make any obvious mistakes, there are plenty of other issues that can keep your resume at the bottom of the pile.

1. Non-Spelling Errors To Avoid

You could spell every word correctly on a resume and still make some crucial mistakes. For instance, you might put down the wrong phone number or email address of yourself or of a reference. If a hiring team cannot contact you easily, then you aren’t going to get the job. Additionally, if they cannot contact a reference, this also hurts your chances. Double and triple-check these phone numbers and emails prior to sending out resumes. Even if you use a resume writer, be sure to double-check the phone numbers and emails, as this is information they won’t be able to verify.

Style errors also lessen the impact of a resume. Keep everything on your resume as consistent as possible. For instance, perhaps you attended three different colleges and when you list them, you have two in boldface and one in italics. This just looks sloppy; either boldface all three or none at all, but keep it all the same. Your style should be consistent throughout the entire resume and don’t go crazy with “clever” fonts. One to two fonts is plenty and they should be typefaces that are easy to read. Professional resume writers are careful to keep a consistent, clean style throughout the document.

2. Are You Creative & Motivated?

That’s great, but so is everyone else seeking a job. Avoid meaningless words that really don’t set you apart from the pack. Words such as responsible, motivated, creative, positive, and results-oriented really do nothing to say who you are or what you can do for the company. As resume writers, we know that bosses want responsible, creative, positive, results-oriented employees. Tell the hiring team about your concrete qualifications and experience rather than using empty adjectives. Hopefully, your references will sing your praises regarding your responsibility and creativity rather than just reading it on your resume.

3. Be Specific & Dynamic

Too often when people list their capabilities, they think in vague terms and forget to give specific examples of what they can do. For instance, a person might include “Excellent oral presentation skills,” on a resume. A resume writer might alter this to say, “Wrote and delivered keynote speeches at annual corporate retreats and motivational conferences.”

If you have “excellent computer skills,” explain what this means. Professional resume writers might state instead “utilized QuickBooks, Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint and Photoshop to create monthly reports and monthly conference presentations.” This provides an employer with an idea of what you can truly bring to the organization. Dynamic, active language with clear examples also works better than vague generalities.

If you had 20 employees working for you, don’t say that you were “responsible for 20 employees,” instead state that you “managed 20 employees.” Then go on to explain briefly what this management included such as, “managed 20 employees, organized weekly work schedules, oversaw yearly employee reviews,” and so on. As expert resume writers, we know that it’s always good to be specific about your skills.

Obviously, the easiest way to avoid making these mistakes and to craft an amazing resume is to hire an expert. At Resume Writing Guild, our team of resume writers can create an ideal resume that will truly set you apart from the rest of the pack. We can create resumes for entry-level job seekers as well as professional resumes and executive resumes for those with more experience. In addition, we also have the experience to craft military and federal resumes.


Jacob Mathias

Jacob Mathias is a content writer and SEO specialist for Resume Writing Groups. He also works as a web developer and designer. He's passionate about sharing ways on how to get the job you want and living life to the fullest.

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