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5 Things to Leave Off Your Resume, According to Recruiters

Inc. logo Inc. 3/5/2019 Melanie Curtin
resume crumpled © Getty Images resume crumpled

Less is more.

There are any number of reasons a recruiter will call you in for a job (or not). For example, if you meet the recruiter at a job fair, the way you present in person will be equally as important as the one-page piece of paper that you're counting on to express yourself and why you're qualified for a position at the company.

Whether you're applying for online jobs, submitting to job agencies, or applying to companies directly, resumes and CVs are still a fundamental way recruiters and hiring managers view your experience. They're still important.

Here are five things recruiters (including one I interviewed from Accenture) wish you'd leave off your resume:

1. Objective

Recruiters don't care what your objective is. They care about whether you have the skills to get the job done. At best, including your objective can seem like a minor distraction; at worst, it can make you look immature or unrealistic. Getting rid of it also leaves room for you to include other things (or increase your font size).

2. Your address

If you're applying to a job, the recruiter assumes you'd be willing to live in the place where the job is. People move around so much these days that it doesn't really matter where you live, and they definitely don't need to know your street address.

Your email address and phone number are sufficient in terms of contact information.

3. Old experience

This is one of the biggest and most consistent complaints from recruiters. You don't need to include everything you've ever done on your resume--in fact, it's distracting. It can also come off as strange, especially if it's old or totally unrelated experience.

If you're applying for a job in the tech industry, for example, the recruiter doesn't need to know that you worked at Applebee's in high school. A good rule is to leave off anything about high school.

You also want to trim so your resume isn't too long. Unless you're an executive or have extensive experience, your resume should fit on one page. Take the time to streamline your resume to solely the positions relevant to the job for which you're applying. Less really is more.

4. A photo of yourself

According to a recruiter from Accenture in the U.S., including a photo of yourself can come off as unprofessional. Plus, it takes away from the function of a resume, which is to narrow down applicants to those most capable to do the job. Exceptions to this: regions where it's customary to include a photograph (India and parts of Europe).

5. Misspellings and grammatical errors

This is on every list of resume tips ever for a reason: It makes you look bad. Because you comb through your resume so many times yourself, it's a really good idea to have someone else look over your final version. You want to make absolutely sure you don't have any grammar mistakes or misspelled words on your resume, period.

Related video: 6 words you should never use on your LinkedIn profile

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