When it comes to applying for jobs, the first impressions are not usually in person, but on paper.
And by that, we mean resumes. The resume is what employers look over before deciding to pick up the phone and make the call to set up an interview.
But what makes an employer pass on a possible candidate?
It’s not just grammar and spelling errors. There are other blunders that a human resource specialist will catch and place your resume on the “pass” pile.
Thus, here are three types of common errors many applicants make, and you must avoid:
- Responsibilities vs. Results.
When inputting your job descriptions, it’s easy to put in your duties at your previous places of employment.
“Was responsible with sensitive information.”
“Was in charge of logistics.”
“Took care of twelve Marines/Sailors/Airmen/Soldiers/Coasties.”
Which is great, don’t get us wrong. And of course, the more responsibility you’re given, the more your higher-ups trust you.
However, what kind of results did you produced from those responsibilities?
Charles Dominick, president, founder and chief procurement officer of Next Level Purchasing, said there are four key words that must be used in your resume: increased, saved, reduced, or improved.
“Use them often because they indicate what you achieved, not merely what tasks were assigned to you,” Dominick said.
One method you can use and guide you is the PAR Method.
PAR stands for, “Problem, Action, and Results.”
As for how to put it down on the resume, you can always go backward.
“Increased productivity by 12 percent by hiring two more employees to the staff.
“Saved the company $12,000 by negotiating a new contract.”
A good example of this is provided by Portland Community College, which you can find here.
Action words are also the key. If you need help on which words to use, Quintessential Careers has you covered here.
Now, just because you applied for a position in the energy, construction, or healthcare industry, doesn’t mean you add lifeguard duty or your time as a shoes salesman.
Instead, you should only add experiences relevant to the position you’re pursuing.
For example, if you were a corpsman in the Navy and you’re applying for a unit coordinator position in the Hermann Memorial hospital system, you want to tell the recruiter about your experience with patients. If you are certified in CPR or a licensed radiological technologist, you list it on your resume.
- Keep your resume to ONE (1) page.
As we mentioned in the previous blunder, you only put down experiences, skills, etc. relevant to the position you’re applying for.
With that being said, be specific, but don’t be too detailed.
As we learned in the military, keep it short, straight and to the point.
You don’t want to lose the recruiter’s attention, and you don’t want them to pass you up. So keep these blunders in mind to avoid when you create or correct your resume.
If you are a veteran in need of help with your resume, career placement, and transitioning into the civilian world, register with NextOp Vets today.