by Phil Baker,
Every day there are job hunters spending hours resume writing, resume submitting, and waiting for interviews only to be disappointed. The fact is most resumes are worthless.
How can you measure the worth of your resume?
What can make a resume worthless?
- Applying for positions you are not qualified for
- Applying for positions that are out of your geographical area
- Not using the Resume Dictionary resume writing formulaUsing poor grammar
- Using the wrong resume format
- Unappealing layout
- Poor Choice of Headings
- Not following employer directions for submitting your resume
- Not including a dynamic cover letter
- Sending the wrong file type
- Submitting your resume to an employer that is not hiring
If you are not getting interviews, there is a reason.
Applying for Positions for Which You are Not Qualified
Pay close attention to an employerâ€™s required qualifications before sending your resume.
If a job posting states a four year degree is required, and you do not have one, you are probably wasting your time. If the ad states: â€œFour year degree or equivalent experienceâ€ there is some flexibility.
If you are submitting a resume for a position for which you are clearly untrained or unqualified for, you are wasting your time.
Applying for Positions Out of Your Geographical Area
I have received many resumes for on-site employment positions from other geographical areas far beyond commuting distance. Sometimes these resumes arrive with no explanation of why they are applying. Unless the position requires high or rare skill or knowledge, these resumes are most always rejected.
If you are considering relocating to where you are sending your resume, make sure the employer knows by telling them in your cover letter. Also inform them when you will be available for an interview and by what means. If you will be in their area give them specific dates. If you are available by Skype or other webcam communication or phone interview let the employer know in your cover letter.
Not Using the Resume Dictionary Resume Writing Formula
Make sure your resume makes use of power words and supports them with facts about your accomplishments. Use the Resume Dictionary formula.Â Â (Hyo’s Note – if you want, sign up for my newsletter and get the free ebook on 197 words not to use)
Hyo – Check out Dr. Hanson’s list of Action Verbs to use:Â Action Verbs in Action…
Using Poor Grammar
Your use of grammar is a direct correlation to your levels of education and intelligence. Many employers frown on poor grammar and incorrect word usage. The ability to communicate is imperative to most jobs. Poor grammar in resume writing and cover letters indicates poor communication skills.
Using the Wrong Resume Format
Unless you have a very specific reason to send a functional resume, use a chronological format.
Use an appealing font, font size, and resume layout. Use bullet point and bold text where appropriate.
Poor Choice of Headings
What are the main headings for you should use for your resume?
Common headings are:
- Name and Contact Information
- Summary of Qualifications
- Work/Professional Experience or Work history
You can also create headings that are specific to the job posting and employer.
- Computer Skills
- Equipment Experience
- Professional Associations
- Community Involvement
- Extracurricular Activities
Not Following Employer Instructions for Submitting Your Resume
I have seen many employers immediately eliminate emails from job candidates that did not follow directions. If the job posting states: â€œSend to the Attention of Jane,â€ makes sure your subject line says: â€œAttention: Jane.â€
The employers are right. If a person who is doing everything possible in the hiring to impress you cannot even follow simple directions, how can you expect this person to follow directions on the job?
Not Including a Dynamic Cover Letter
Many job hunters forward their resumes with no email cover letter. Unless the employer has specifically requested no cover letter, sending a resume without one this is a mistake.
Hyo – Of coure, Phil has an interesting cover letter creator software, which I review here.
Sending the Wrong File Type
First check the employerâ€™s instructions for any specific file type requirements; if there are no instructions send a .doc and a .pdf. Do not send a .docx file unless requested.
Also embed your resume in your email at the end of your cover letter.
Submitting Your Resume to an Employer That is not Hiring
You might surmise that some employment ads are bogus yet are you aware some help wanted ads from legitimate companies are also bogus? Unfortunately there are companies that measure candidate availability and even collect salary information by placing ads for which there are no jobs. There is not much you can do about this.
Copyright 2009 Phil Baker
Hyoâ€™s Note â€“ Not only is Phil the creator of the OneClick Cover Letter Creator SoftwareÂ ProgramÂ (a ridiculous easy to use, yet effective software that creates cover letters tailored to your needs) which you can visit here, or you can read my review of it here, but he also has a tremendous website, www.ResumeDictionary.com.Â Resume DictionaryÂ might just be the best, free resume resource site out there – jammed with great information and tips on getting your resume water tight and rocking.