Recruiter Expectations and 5 Common CV Mistakes to Avoid

A resume can make or break a deal, and all that is done in just 6 seconds. Yes, in the flood of CVs that recruiters receive, they skim through a resume for only 6 seconds to find if you fulfil the essential requirements of the post or not. You are in if you match the needs, else out. The thorough examination happens only after this first level of screening.

Since your CV is the first impression and ticket to the next round of selection, it has to be thought over and free from common CV mistakes that even many veterans tend to make. Here we will consider the top 5 mistakes that might put-off recruiters:

1. A CV without a summary

Starting from the resume title, you need to provide a clear, concise, and to the point summary in not more than 2-3 lines to catch the recruiter’s attention. A good idea would be to pay attention to the job posting you are applying for and use some of the words from there. This will show that you have paid attention to the posted job title. Your summary might require changes per application, based on the job description.

2. Wrong Spelling, grammar, and poor formatting

Doing a spell-check is not enough when you want your CV to be foolproof. There might be very similar sounding words which the spell-check might omit, and then you have a CV with unnecessary words which are not at all related to your work. For example “diary” might be spelt as “dairy” and even though both words are correct English words, they are not interchangeable and will not make sense. Apart from the checks, it might be worth it to have a fresh pair of eyes to do a proofreading of your CV. Try to read aloud your CV to yourself, and if it does not read well, then you might need to tweak it further.

Formatting of your CV should not be jazzy or a piece of art. The design needs to be clean with a sophisticated font like Arial or Times New Roman. You must ensure its readability on screen is clear and that you save your CV in a recognizable format. The standard formats would be w rod document or a PDF file. Apart from the font, do take care of the following:

  • No inconsistent styling in terms of broken lines, different fonts, uneven margins, alignment, etc.
  • No improper white spacing.

3. One-size-fits-all approach

You will have to customize your CV to suit the needs of the role that you are applying for. So move around your skills, achievements and responsibilities based on the specific needs of the job.

4. Wrong details furnished

Exaggerating skills, providing incorrect information concerning academic degree or employment history will all backfire. Nowadays it is good to put your LinkedIn profile link within your CV but make sure that the details furnished there and your CV do not contradict each other and they are in synch.

5. Employment gaps

Job-hopping and gaps in employment have a negative impact on your resume. But these could be the times where you may be learnt some skills or did some freelancing. It is important to group the periods of unemployment under headings like “Freelancing” or “travelling” or “studying” or anything else you were doing rather than leaving them as blank. It should show that you have been utilizing your time during which you were not employed. Be truthful about it, even if it means telling them you were sick or busy in taking care of your child.
It takes just one mistake for your CV to move out of the screening process; hence it is very vital to avoid these CV mistakes and keep your CV error-free. CV is your first impression, and you want to make sure you show your best side to them.

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Shalini L
Shalini L

One of the prime contributors for this blog, Expertise in Staffing and Recruitment, Content Strategist by Profession. A Music Lover & Traveller by Choice.

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