Here at Resume Companion HQ, we love to hark on about what to include on your resume and how to write it, but just as important is knowing what not to write.
This all depends, of course, on what industry you belong to and your years of experience within a particular job field. So without further ado, let’s get straight into what not to include on your resume.
Your Date of Birth
We all know it’s rude to ask a lady her age but in the world of employment in any country worth its salt, it’s becoming a legal requirement to ask nobody their date of birth within the hiring process. So why place yourself in a predicament where an unregulated employer can throw your resume away at a snap of their fingers because they don’t want to hire somebody over or under a certain age? Your resume doesn't need your DOB.
Let your skills do the talking and leave the date of birth off your resume.
Your Marital Status
Come on now, this isn’t a dating agency you’re applying to—it’s a hiring agency or a potential employer. It’s never necessary to write your marital status on your resume as it will only decrease your chances of getting the job you want.
Some employers may look favorably on a single person, especially if the candidate will have to work long hours and overtime. But on the flip side, some employers may view a single person as lacking the skills to maintain a relationship into hallowed marriage.
For other people who write they’re married on their resume, it may be seen as a positive trait by revealing stability. However, it may impede other candidates whose employer may view marriage as more of a burden than a blessing. When in doubt, leave it out. Your resume doesn't need your marital status.
Ok, this one is a slight grey area. I probably should have rephrased the name of this section to “Don’t fill your resume with 9 pages of generic responsibilities that will bore the pants off a hiring manager” but I kept it short, just like you should keep your generic responsibilities.
Let me throw out a brief example. If you have three jobs from the past and you have five bullet points per job, try to make no more than six of those bullet points a generic responsibility. This works out to be about 30% of your responsibilities. Oh, and for those who are not sure what a generic responsibility actually is, take a look below:
- Used strong communication to greet customers and sat them at their tables with organizational skills
A not-so-generic responsibility:
- Managed 7 tables greeting 90+ customers per day staying within booking timetable deadlines
Your resume doesn't need your generic responsibilities.
My, I and Me
Writing these subjective pronouns are not needed, as technically your whole resume is one big personal pronoun. The Hiring Manager will know it was you who wrote the resume, so begin your responsibility points with an action verb instead, such as “Developed a new staff…”, “Spearheaded a marketing plan …” or “Managed a team of …”, etc.
Your resume doesn't need subjective pronouns.
High School Experience
Unless you are in high school, or you left high school and did not carry on any education, you can remove your high school from your resume. Instead, you can highlight your college or other training instead which will be more relevant to the job you are seeking. Read this post on how to write a resume with no work experience if you're finding it difficult to write your resume.
For those in high school or who have recently left, consider all the great activities you participated in. For starters, mention any GPA of 3.0 or above, any relevant coursework or topics and awards. Secondly, mention any groups or societies you participated in whether curricular or extra-curricular. If you led any groups, organized any events or worked within a team these can also be noted down. Your resume doesn't need your high school experience.
A Photo of Yourself
You are beautiful and don’t let anybody else tell you otherwise, but please leave your photo off your resume. The only time a photo is needed on a resume is if you are applying to a modeling job or a role within the acting industry.
Even then, it is more than likely you will have networked your way into the role which will involve your employer judging your looks in person while they whisper sweet nothings in your ear. Your resume doesn't need a photo of yourself.
Discover: How to write an acting resume
References Upon Request
Save space on your resume. Your “References upon Request” is already a given in your potential employer's mind and if they want them, they will ask. Instead, make a note of at least three references on a separate piece of paper. Make these references a solid cross section of your past.
An optimal references sheet will contain at least one previous employer (ideally your most recent employer or longest duration employer), a teacher or professor from your education and a friend who has known you for at least a few years. Bring this reference paper to your interview unless explicitly asked to add them to your resume or to input them on an online job application form. Your resume doesn't need references upon request.
I hope these quick tips will shape your resume into a document that will stand the test of time allowing you to represent you in the best light possible. Now go forth and be the best you can be.
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