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New research from the New College of Humanities has found you have less than 60 seconds to impress your potential boss before your resume gets tossed in the bin. With 20 per cent of recruiters say they discard a CV before they even get to the end. Ouch.
Luckily, the research also looked into the top 10 things employers hate to see on your CV, quizzing 860 recruiters about common mistakes people make. So how to stand out from the pack? Don’t do any of these…
1. Typos and grammatical errors
It’s confirmed: theirs nothing worse than having you’re CV full of typos. (See what we did there?)
59 per cent of recruiters surveyed said this was the biggest mistake you could make. Spelling errors instantly demonstrate poor attention to detail and laziness. Spell check is literally a click away – if you’re not sure of a word, don’t use it.
2. Using an overly casual tone
This isn’t your best friend – you’re addressing someone who could potentially be your future boss. Stick to formal language and the proper, appropriate salutations. Again if you’re not sure, it’s always worth double checking with a trusted friend. (Post continues after gallery.)
3. Using jargon or clichés
While the study found 24 per cent of candidates claim they have “excellent written communication skills”, almost twice as many are guilty of relying on tired clichés like “team player” – one of several phrases recruiters absolutely hate to see.
“Can work independently” topped the list as the most hated, closely followed by “hard worker”, “works well under pressure”, “problem solver” and “good listener”.
4. A CV more than two pages
Avoid giving your life history and instead focus on highlighting and tailoring your experience to what’s really relevant for the job you’re applying for.
Your CV should be two pages at the absolute most. Recruiters will spend an average of just three minutes and 14 seconds on your entire application – make them count.
5. Using a ‘snazzy’ background or border
Keep it sleek and simple. While different colours can help to attract attention, it’s not necessarily for the better. A clear and nicely laid out resume will often be the most attractive to recruiters, which is why 44 per cent said too much fuss was their biggest pet-peeve.
6. Writing in third person
It's just unnecessary. A CV is a way for you to sell yourself to a potential employer, so stick to first person.
7. Including clip art or emojis
8. Cringeworthy quotes
Nearly 40 per cent of recruiters labelled this as a big no-no, so save those cheesy quotes for your Instagram account.
9. Unprofessional email addresses
That [email protected] email address just isn't going to cut it anymore. Stick to something professional and simple - a variation on your name is usually a safe bet.
10. Unprofessional fonts
Again, keep it clear and simple. Use headlines or italicised words (within reason), but stick to one easy-to-read font.
How many of these have you been guilty of in the past?