Your resume is your introduction to potential employers. Creating a resume for each position of interest takes a lot of work, but it's important to ensure your resume is as close to perfection as possible. There are lots of things to include on a resume, but what should you leave off? During your job search, consider removing the following seven things from your resume.
1. Objective Statement
An objective statement was once a popular component to a resume, as it emphasized what candidates were looking for in a position or employer. However, times have changed, and employers want to know what you can offer them as a potential hire, not what they can offer you. Instead of an objective statement, consider including a summary statement that details your qualifications for the job, basically giving the employer a synopsis of your skills.
2. Salary Expectations
Salary discussions should not happen before the interview, so leave this information off your resume. If you're asked about salary during the interview or before, try to give a target range, or ask for the employer's target range. If you put your salary expectation on the resume and it's too high, you might get passed over for the job. If it's too low, you could get short-changed.
Gaps in your resume indicate that you may have something to hide, even if that's not true. If you weren't working but were instead volunteering or in school, include the experience you gained during that time. To minimize gaps, consider using years when listing the amount of time spent on work activities or experiences rather than months.
4. References Available
If you are applying for a job, you likely have references ready to give the hiring manager. Therefore, you don't need to waste valuable space on your resume telling employers that your references are available upon request.
5. Interests and Hobbies
Unless your interests and hobbies are in some way relevant to the position, leave them off your resume. Sure, they may make you seem more interesting, especially if you and the hiring manager share the same hobby. However, it's always best to avoid including information in your resume that makes you stand out for any reason other than your skills or qualifications as a job candidate.
6. Extra Dates
Only use dates for the important components of your resume, such as your education and work experience. It's unnecessary to associate specific dates with extracurricular activities or volunteer work. The hiring manager likely won't pay too much attention to those dates anyway.
7. Primary Education
If you're in college or just graduated from college, there's no need to list where you went to elementary school, junior high or even high school. Not only does this take up extra space but since you advanced your education, it's not necessary to list primary schools.
You want your resume to be the best possible window into your professional life. Make it stand out more by leaving certain information off of it and expanding on the information that highlights the fact that you're the best job candidate.
Photo courtesy of Ploymint HQ at Flickr.com
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