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If you're a millennial, then it may seem like you've been trained to write a resume since early high school. Writing a resume may feel like second nature by now, but there are some red flags that should not be included. Though you want to give a hiring manager the best view of who you are, less is more. If you're trying to get hired in the real world, think of this as a professional dating profile. You want your job to know the best parts of who you are, but you want to stray away from overindulging. You want to wow your future employer, but not overwhelm them with unnecessary information. Having a professional email listed, not including your hobbies, and keeping your resume to one page is just the beginning. Here are some things to leave off your resume, as well as some personal tips I've learned over the years. May the job hunting grind be ever in your favor!
References Available Upon Request Section
Though some jobs ask for references, it's really not necessary to use a space filler stating "references available upon request." Not only does this take up space on your resume, but it's a no-brainer that you will provide references at a later date if they're requested. Including this as a section seems like you're overcompensating and trying to fill the space.
Phrases That Start With "I"
When listing out your accomplishments, skills, or duties that you were responsible for on your previous job, never start the sentence with "I." Though you included bullet points of things that you did previously, using nouns or pronouns is a big no-no. Instead, use words like created, analyzed, assisted, etc. Overall this makes your resume seem more streamlined.
Long-Winded Descriptions of Your Job Duties
Hiring managers don't want a list of the duties you were supposed to do on the job or an explanation of what your job entailed. That's something they could find on Google. When listing out your accomplishments, it's vital to explain what you did on the job. When it comes time for the interview round, they're going to reference your resume and having to explain in detail what you were responsible for can make or break your interview. Don't over-embellish and always highlight the skills or assets you acquired on the job.
Personal Social Media Accounts
Unless you're applying for a social media job and the hiring manager is explicitly asking for your social media handles, stray away from providing this information. Instead of including your Twitter account where you live-tweet The Bachelor or your Instagram handle which features many pictures of rosé, add your LinkedIn profile. Your account may be one of the cleanest social media handles in the 21st century, but there's no need to run the risk of a future employer digging into your personal life. Pro tip: If you are going into the social media/digital marketing space, create a "business account" instead. I personally have a private account for family and friends and a separate account strictly for work. That way the lines don't cross.
Irrelevant Job or Volunteering Experience
It goes without saying that you should not have any trace of high school accomplishments on your resume, but now that you're in the real world, there's also irrelevant job experience as well. On my main resume, I include work experience that is relevant to the jobs that I'm applying for currently. Though I learned a lot at my summer job working retail at Kate Spade during my sophomore year of college, a hiring manager in my field will not be interested in that information. Sometimes less is indeed more, and focusing on fleshing out your job description bullet points will gain more favor then trying to fill up the page.
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Allanah Dykes has a Bachelor of Arts in Communications and Politics from Fairfield University. She started her freelance career in 2016 and has written about how to land a job post-college, internships, and the interviewing process. She has pieces featured on Elite Daily, Levo League, and Popsugar.