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Stressed Asian man worried about work and resume

The worst mistakes candidates can make on their CV

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With the Fair Consideration Framework (FCF) coming into play in Singapore on August 1, employers will be required to submit their job vacancies on the new National Jobs Board to ensure fair hiring practices and adherence to the new legislation.

When the time comes, I imagine thousands of job seekers will be re-doing their resumes, updating their qualifications and experience, and uploading their fresh new CVs onto the jobs board for potential employers to see (if they haven’t already.)

READ MORE: The most unprofessional job applications you’ve ever seen

After all, job hopping is still very much the norm, and potential candidates are wise enough to know the eyes of all employers and recruiters are going to be glued to that website from the start of August.

For HR leaders, it means you could end up going through hundreds more resumes than you normally might for a position, which isn’t a bad thing -but we all know how frustrating it can be to rummage and sort through dozens or poorly written, lazy, half-arsed CVs.

So, jobseekers – if you’re reading this – here’s what NOT to do.

A thread on popular social media site Reddit recently asked: “[Those] who work in Human Resources, what red flags on a resume or cover letter will prevent a candidate from getting a call back?”

The responses were too spot on to not include here. Plus, I’m hoping enough job seekers read this and start tidying up their resumes, making your job a heck of a lot easier:

1. “TARGET YOUR RESUME!!! It is so simple, yet so many do not take the time to do so because ‘it’s so much work’ or ‘I don’t know much about the company’. This is the time to show how your KSAOs (knowledge, skills, abilities and others) and competencies match that of the position/company.”

2. “Formatting. If you use inconsistent spacing, indenting, bulleting, typefaces, font sizes, bolding or italics, it’s a major red flag. I know it seems trivial, but your resume is supposed to be an example of the best work you can accomplish and all of those formatting things (in addition to spelling and grammar) are easy to catch and fix.”

3. “Big red flag: STUPID EMAIL NAMES. drinkasixty69, hotbabymomma, awesome420, sexybumblebee1995, kickinass1989 or nativechick42 are NOT emails you want to put in a resume to get a job! I see these types of emails every damn day!”

4. “I sort through thousands of resumes every night and…you would not believe the number of people who don’t include their names or any contact information.”

5. “I cant even count the number of times I have received a resume that is a screen shot from an iphone of a picture they took of their resume. You can see their battery power, wifi signal, everything.”

6. “If you e-mail your resume to us and it is:

  • 3 separate files/attachments, one for each page of your resume.
  • PICTURES of the pages, not even the actual png files.
  • Poorly formatted on top of these.

Then you’re doing it wrong, and I hate you.”

7. “Spelling errors are the number one red flag. You can have the best resume I’ve ever seen, however, if there is one spelling error, you will not be getting a call.”

8. “Large unexplained gaps in your work history if you’re a male. If you’re female, most HR will assume you were on [maternity] leave or raising kids during that time. If you’re a dude, the general assumption is you were in jail and/or hitch hiking across Europe contemplating your navel and smoking a lot of pot.”

FEATURE ARTICLE: Click to hire

HR heads and recruiters, got anything else to add? Write it in the comments below.

All comments courtesy of Reddit

Image: Shutterstock

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Rebecca Lewis
Human Resources Magazine Singapore

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