25 Things to Remove from Your Resume

When you submit a resume for a position, it goes through several levels of screening. The first person to review your resume may only take 6 seconds to scan through and decide whether or not your resume has potential. Although the shortest, it could prove to be the most important. If your resume doesn’t get past this initial scan, it might never be seen by a key decision maker in the hiring process.

Here is a list of 25 things to remove from your resume, starting from the top:

1) Full Mailing Address – instead, include just the city and state or metro area

2) More than 1 Phone Number – in today’s environment, only your personal cell phone is necessary

3) A Corporate Email Account – if you are using your employer’s account, you may miss out on emails from hiring managers trying to reach you when you lose access to that account, instead, use a personal gmail or yahoo account

4) Personal Social Media Accounts – the only social media account necessary to include is your LinkedIn profile

5) A Photo of Yourself – save this for your LinkedIn account or a one-page professional biography

6) Personal Pronouns it is assumed that you are the subject of your own resume, so you can leave off the “I, my, we, and our”

7) Inconsistent Formatting – your resume should use a single consistent font style and size throughout with no text boxes and minimal tables

8) Cover Letter – a cover letter should be provided on a separate document, not as part of your resume

9) An Objective Statement – employers are selfish, they want to know what you can offer them, not the other way around – instead, create a strong branding headline and summary that showcases your key skills

Need help writing a strong headline or summary?

10) Accomplishments at the Top – employers are most interested in your recent experience and therefore want to know when your accomplishments were completed; instead, divide out your accomplishment statements into the roles in which they were achieved

11) Education at the Top – unless you are a recent graduate (within the last two years), your education section belongs at the bottom of your resume as does your technical skills and other training or professional development

12) Irrelevant Work Experience include experience that is relevant to the jobs you are applying to now, it’s okay to tailor your resume per job you are applying to

Learn how to tailor your resume toward specific jobs you are applying to

13) Months in Your Dates of Employment – unless you are in a technical or medical industry where you held several short project-based or contract roles, your dates should be included in a “year – year” format

14) Short-Term Employment – if you have positions that were held for two or three months, it could clutter up your resume, if they do not create large gaps in your resume by removing them, consider leaving them off your resume

15) Reasons for Separation – the reason why you left a company can be discussed during the interview process and does not need to be included on your resume

16) Lengthy Company Descriptions – a company description should be a maximum of one to two lines consisting of the industry, products, and size or revenue

17) Experience older than 10 to 15 Years – employers are most interested in your recent experience and including too many years of experience can create a very long resume or worse, date you

18) Salary Information – this is also something that can be discussed in an interview or when it’s time to negotiate your new salary

19) Lies – this is a give-in but important to remember that employers run background screenings and will sometimes require candidates to complete skills tests, the truth always comes out

20) Your Date of Attendance or Graduation – these are not necessary to include on your resume and can sometimes become a distraction so it’s best to leave it off

21) Your GPA – it is not necessary to include your GPA, there is a better way to demonstrate that you did well such as graduating “cum laude” or making the “dean’s list” or being a member of some “honor society”

22) High School Education – it is not necessary to include your high school education, especially if you have completed a college degree, if not, highlight other forms of training you might have

23) Personal Information and Hobbies – it is not necessary to include your marital status, how many children you have or that you enjoy skiing and golfing

24) References and Supervisor Information – references and supervisor information should be provided on a separate document when requested

25) Too Many Pages – unless a highly technical, educational, or medical resume with lots of research, patents, and publications, a resume should be kept to two pages