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The Do's & Don'ts of Resumes

The following are some “Do” and “Don’t” resume tips to further assist you when creating and editing your resume.

DO…

  • Do make sure your resume is short, concise, engaging and interesting. It needs to focus on capturing the employer’s attention so they will want to learn more about you.
  • Do aim to keep your resume to one page length
  • Do focus on the information relevant to your personal career goals by expanding points related to the position you are seeking, and limit information that is less pertinent.
  • Do start sentences with action verbs to give your statements strength and power
  • Do capitalize and bold/underline headings so they stand out.
  • Do organize your resume so that the most relevant information is presented first.
  • Do proofread your resume twice and then have two other people proofread it as well.
  • Do print your resume on standard size quality bond paper. Paper should be plain and white, beige or ivory.
  • Do continue to revise and update your resume so it is always ready.

DON’T…

  • Don’t include a photograph of yourself or include any other personal, demographic or statistical information (I.E. age, ethnicity, religion, marital status, etc.) that could lead to discrimination and ruin your chance of obtaining the job. A resume is for business purposes only. Therefore, everything discussed should be limited to business.
  • Don’t include information that is not directly related to the position you’re applying for.
  • Don’t mention your salary history or reasons why you left your previous jobs.
  • Don’t lie about your skills, education or your previous work history. Although you may want to use words that make your job position and responsibilities sound more interesting, you shouldn’t state anything that isn’t true. After all, if the employer hired you based on information that was a lie, they would expect you to perform a job you won’t be able to do, which will likely result in the loss of your new job.
  • Don’t be repetitive. If you performed the same task at two different jobs, only mention it once. Mention other relevant skills or accomplishments that the employer may find interesting.
  • Don’t exclude volunteer work. Non-paid experience can provide the employer valuable insight into your personal character.
  • Don’t create your own style of resume. Resume formats exist for a reason. They keep you organized, save you time, and make it easier for an employer to read and understand.
  • Don’t use elaborate, colored, or various sized fonts. All text should be black, and in a standard font format (I.E. Times New Roman). All text, except the headings should be in a 12 pt. font. Headings should only be slightly larger than the rest of the text.
  • Don’t use the word “resume”.
  • Don’t use the word “me”, and only use the word “I” when it is applicable. such as in your objective statement or cover letter.
  • Don’t include testimonials in your resume.
  • Don’t rush your resume.