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5 Mistakes You Can Make on a Resume

Preparing your resume for a job interview or career fair takes time. It’s essential to be organized, diligent and pay attention to the small details. Employers will notice.

Don’t create a negative situation with your resume, where you’re ill-prepared to face the challenges of impressing an employer. A sloppy resume can destroy an interview, regardless of how personable and upbeat you are. A sloppy resume may even prevent you from getting your foot in the door for an interview.

Fear not, job seekers. Your resume will be ready with a competitive edge if you spend time on it. And, if you avoid these five mistakes.

Here are the five biggest mistakes you can make when putting together a resume:
  • Using normal printer paper: This is a no-no. Budget the time to travel to a copy store and have your resume printed on resume paper. It looks and feels considerably more professional than the alternative. And it doesn’t cost much. A few sheets of resume paper may cost $1.

  • Visible errors: Want to know the fastest way for an employer to throw a resume in the trash? Even the slightest misspelling can have a resume tossed aside in dismissal. Carefully proofread your resume numerous times to ensure proper grammar. Not a grammar wizard? Don’t worry about it. Have a friend or mentor go over it. The more eyes on your resume, the less likely you are to have errors.

  • Focusing too much on your needs: The one question on every employer’s mind: What can you do for me? Of course, we all want to utilize our skills in an atmosphere with the potential for career advancement. Don’t necessarily stray from that idea. But, be more specific. Make it known early in your resume, even in the objective, how many years of experience you have, and specifically how you can add value to the company’s operations. This way, you are offering ways to help the employer meet his/her goals, instead of making a generalized statement about how you want to advance your career.

  • Long paragraphs: In the quick-hitting, digital age of 140 characters or less, packing vital information into short, digestible nuggets is essential. Your achievements and job responsibilities should be clearly separated from one another, and should summarize your accomplishments and skill-set in an efficient and organized manner.
  • Exceeding the one-page rule: Make sure your resume is no longer than one page. For most students, this shouldn’t be a difficult task. If it is, cut out the excessive content. Employers go through hundreds of resumes every day. The content that resonates with them is located on the top half of the page. There’s no need to make your resume longer than a page.

Contributed by Eric Sorrentino, Grantham University

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