7 Top Fatal Resume Mistakes

7 Top Fatal Resume Mistakes

I regularly review resumes when recruiting to jobs and I am constantly surprised with what people put in their resumes.

Resumes with the below issues generally go on the do not interview pile:

1. Photos

Unless the application specifically requests a photo do not put a photo on your resume. I repeat delete any photos from your resume. People generally put inappropriate photos on resumes. Examples I have come across are seductive photos (what are you applying for), photos with their dogs and photos that have been cropped but you can still see the arm of the cropped person around the applicants shoulders.

You are opening yourself up to be discriminated against by your photo.

2. Funny email addresses

Reserve funny emails for your friends and have a sensible email address for your job applications. Your sensible email should consist of your name. Same examples of email addresses I have seen include mcbooby@, spiritualguide@, freakyfred@, fightermary@

Be professional from beginning to end.

3. Resumes with no contact details

How is a recruiter meant to contact you. No email, address or phone number – no interview!! This shows a lack of attention to detail.

4. No dates next to your roles

If I can not see how long you were in a job for I assume it was not for very long and you are trying to hide that you move around a lot. Put dates on your resume and if you have had a lot of jobs in a number of years put in the reason. Left due to promotion, was made redundant, resigned to have children. Paint the true and correct picture don’t let the recruiter create their own picture.

5. Crazy fonts and colours

These distract from the credible part of your resume – your skills and experience. If the font and colour are too distracting I won’t continue reading your resume. Use a standard font such as Arial or Calibri and ensure it is readable size 11 or 12. Don’t fall into the trap of trying to make your resume stand out by using multiple colours or unreadable fonts.

6. Personal details

It is illegal for employers to ask if you are married or have children. They don’t need to know this. Often people give this away in their interest area by saying enjoy spending time with family etc. Unless your interest relates to the job or will be seen as a benefit don’t include this. If you are applying for an accounting role with a mining company they don’t need to know you enjoy paddle boarding with your friends.

7. Attention to Detail

Spelling errors or misspelling of computer programs when you say you have experience is a no no. Make sure you get a friend to review your resume so they can find any errors you have missed. This may seem picky but if the job requires attention to detail or data entry for example, why would you give the job to someone who is already showing they can not produce accurate work.

A resume is generally your first point of contact with the company – make sure you make a good impression.

Why do Career Counsellors use Assessment Tools?

Why do Career Counsellors use Assessment Tools?

Assessment tools are used to help find a career that is your best match, which is dependent on four key attributes:

  • Values
  • Interests
  • Personality traits
  • Skills.

How do you identify what your four key attributes consist of?

A career counsellor is qualified to conduct assessment tools which help identify your four key attributes.

Assessment tools can open up a window to potential opportunities by helping you to uncover the tasks, experience, education and training needed for your next career move. These tests can be effective in giving you ideas of potential careers that may be a match for your interests. These assessments get you thinking about potential career options.

Two assessment tools I generally like to use when clients need to identify their interests are:

  1. The Strong Interest Inventory® assessment – it is one of the world’s most widely respected and frequently used career planning tools. It has helped both academic and business organisations develop the brightest talent and has guided thousands of individuals—from high school and university students to mid-career workers seeking a change—in their search for a rich and fulfilling career.

View a sample report for a high school student.

View a sample report for an adult.

The Strong assessment tool looks at six general occupation themes and lists them in order showing the most interest and least interest you have in each area.

The occupational themes are:

  • Realistic – interested in action rather than thought
  • Investigative – strongly scientific and inquiring in orientation
  • Artistic – Value aesthetic qualities and self-expression
  • Social – Interested in working with people, enjoying working in groups, sharing responsibilities and being at the centre of things.
  • Enterprising – verbally skilled in selling, managing and persuading. Tend to seek positions of leadership and power.
  • Conventional – likes accounting, organising and processing data – interested in activities which require attention to detail.

2. The Knowdell™ Career Values Card Sort is a simple tool that allows you to prioritise your values in as little as five minutes. Fifty-four variables of work satisfaction-such as time freedom, precision work, power, technical competence and public contact-are listed and described. This is an effective tool for job seekers, those fine-tuning their present jobs and career changers at all ages and stages.

Both assessment tools are user friendly and easy to complete.

The assessments provide you with the information needed to make better career decisions, and avoid spending money on the wrong training or choosing a career that will not interest you.

Working in a fulfilling career can dramatically increase happiness, self confidence, and work / life balance.

What is a Career Counsellor?

What is a Career Counsellor?

You may have heard a friend or colleague mention a career counsellor, or remember you saw a career counsellor at high school to help decide on your future.

If you are struggling with career goal questions or wondering what type of career you would like to undertake than a career counsellor might be an option for you.

Below are some answers to ask yourself before you make an appointment to see a career counsellor:

1. Do I know what a career counsellor does?

A career counsellor will help you identify your vocational strengths, interests, styles, and motivations, then sort through what career paths are most likely to satisfy your particular values and needs. A career counsellor will use a number of techniques to identify what your strengths, interests and values are. Career counsellors will not apply for jobs for you. They will teach you the tools and show you different techniques so you develop lifelong skills to use throughout your working life.

2. What do I ultimately want to get from career counselling?

Each client has their own reasons for seeing a career counsellor. Some go to identify new careers of interest, whilst other people are trying to break into a certain industry and need some guidance on how to do this.

Make sure you think about what you’re basically trying to achieve: are you wanting to make a shift within your current field, or do you want to make a complete change in a totally new direction? Are you looking for a quick fix, like a new job in the next six months, or to create a 5 year plan? Do you need some help creating a work/life balance? Write down some thoughts and review them over a few days to make sure you have a purpose to seeing a career counsellor.

3. How much, where, for how long?

How much are you able or willing to pay a career counsellor? Your job is how you earn income so why not invest in your career as you would a car or holiday. Consider what you prefer if geography isn’t a concern, Career Guidance Australia offers face to face and Skype appointments. The amount of sessions also depends on the goals you have for counselling. Sometimes it may be two or three sessions however other clients may use a career counsellor over a longer period. When you share your goals with your career counsellor they should be able to give an indication on how many sessions may be needed.

4. Can anyone I know recommend a career counsellor?

Career counselling is a very personal exchange, so a recommendation from a friend is a good place to start. However, if you don’t have any recommendations make sure you at least choose a career counsellor who is a member of the Career Development Association of Australia (CDAA). Members of CDAA have the experience and qualifications required to ensure you are getting the most value from your career counsellor.