Resume Rant Review

Job Interview Funny

Resume Rant Review

There are a gazillion articles out on the web filled with terrific tips on how to write a great resume.  Sometimes the information from different sources can be conflicting but for the most part the information is sound and the advice is worth incorporating into your resume.  Candidates who do a good job writing their resumes will almost always have a better chance at being considered for a particular position.

The reality of sourcing (the process that recruiters use to identify potential candidates) is that in a competitive market most resumes will only get 5 to 10 seconds of a recruiter’s time during the critical first pass.  The purpose of this article is to focus on some of the practical things that recruiters see every day in the many resumes submitted to them that tends to reduce the likelihood that a resume, and therefore the candidate behind it, will make it past that critical initial screening stage.

  • Limited or Missing Contact Information – Everyone knows that email spam is a huge problem and most people these days don’t like receiving unexpected calls from people they don’t know.  But if you’re looking for a new position being able to be easily contacted really is the point.  Most recruiters aren’t going to bother trying to track you down or jump through hoops to contact you.
  • Limited or Missing Dates – Age discrimination is an illegal practice, however, many candidates still experience this so the standard advice has been to limit date visibility on a resume.  This can help mitigate potential age discrimination but it often also does more harm than good.  When reviewing a resume recruiters typically evaluate things like a candidate’s stability (how often they job hop) and how up-to-date their skills are for a particular position.  If dates are missing that analysis can be difficult and many recruiters will simply move on to the next resume.
  • Limited or Missing Key Words – It almost impossible to underestimate the importance of key words on a resume.  Many organizations use automated processes to import resumes and almost all recruiters use some form of keyword matching to initially identify resumes that may be a match for a position.  Missing, abbreviated, nonstandard or limited key words will usually mean your resume won’t be found during a search.  Make sure the text of your resume uses specific keywords and even better include a key word section in your resume.

These issues aren’t nearly as important as the ones already mentioned but are some additional “rants” inspired by things recruiters see every day:

  • Contact Info in a Header – Okay I agree that most of the time it looks cool to have your contact information in a header.  But it makes it harder to copy & paste your information into a database for follow up and many automated systems won’t “see” that information at all.  Keep your contact information in the body of the resume.
  • Spaces in a Name – Again it can look cool to have your name like T H I S on your resume but it’s a real pain to get into a contact database.
  • Single Letter Abbreviations in a Name – If you normally go by your middle or nick name, don’t put the first letter of your first name on your resume (e.g. R Bob Smith).  In many systems your name will become “R” and not “Bob” like you probably intend.
  • Goofy Email Addresses – If you want to be taken seriously then make sure you have a professional or at least a non-silly email address.  Enough said.
  • Resume File Name – Keep in mind that usually whoever downloads your resume will see what you name the file.  Keep it professional and make it easier for the recruiter to save by making it unique and applicable (e.g. “Smith, Bob – Engineering Resume.doc” and not “resume.doc”).

Be sure to check out our website at for more great tips!  Our goal is to help you land your next great position!


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