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12 things recruiters don’t want to see on your resume

Having a professional resume is the key to landing a good job after college. Double-check what NOT to put on a resume in today’s competitive job market before you send yours to any recruiters.

1. An infantile email address

Guess what? Nobody is going to trust that [email protected] is going to get the job done. That’s right, if you are still using your high school email, it’s time to upgrade. It’s free. Using your first and last name is prosaic, but also a good idea if you’re looking to actually get hired.


2. Inconsistent formatting

Make sure that your margins are aligned and everything on your resume is neat and easy-to-read. A messy resume is sore on the eyes and comes off as sloppy and unprofessional.


3. High school information

Once you’re a college graduate, there is no need to mention your high school education on your resume. The only time that it’s appropriate would be if you’re applying for a job because you are connected to someone at the company through high school.


what not to put on a resume


4. “Proficient in Microsoft Word”

If you went to college, this skill is assumed – no need to list it. It’s redundant and a waste of paper space and your recruiter’s time. Same goes for proficiency in programs like Excel and PowerPoint.


5. Silly fonts

Stick to serif fonts like Times New Roman, Garamond and Georgia. Arial and Tahoma are OK. Cursive fonts are completely out of the question, as are juvenile fonts like Impact and Comic Sans.


6. One GPA, two degrees

It’s important if you’re including your graduate degree GPA to also include your undergraduate score. However, GPAs can be removed completely once you’ve held a few good positions in your field.


what not to put on a resume


7. Using third-person, not first-person

When explaining job roles it’s important to use first-person, not third-person. You are talking about your experience. However, you always take off the “I” on your resume, so it will say something like “Manage a US$500,000 budget” not “Manages a US$500,000 budget“.


8. Using the past tense for everything

If you’re currently employed, all responsibilities at your current position should be listed in the present tense, not past tense.


9. Irrelevant experience

There’s no need to tack on job experience to your resume for the sake of it. Recruiters want to see what you’ve done that relates directly to the positions that you’re looking for. It’s better to include less experience and all of it be relevant than include lots of irrelevant experience.


10. Leaving out accomplishments

Just like you need to include your responsibilities on your resume, it’s important to list accomplishments. Cite specific quantitative contributions that you made at your previous workplace, like increasing revenue or page views, depending on your job.


11. Misspelling a company name (or getting the name wrong altogether)

This is a big no-no. It really shows a lack of attention to detail and carelessness if you mess up a company’s name. It’s a mistake that you could easily catch by proofreading once or twice and is highly noticeable from a recruiter’s perspective.


12. “MY RESUME” has been downloaded

Title your resume document with your first and last name so that it can be easily identified once it’s downloaded. You want to make things easier for a recruiter who is dealing with several resumes at any given time.


Now that you know what NOT to put on your resume, apply now for an international internship with your updated resume to boost your career!




Photo 1. based on Application – glasses – pen, by Flazingo Photos, CC-by-SA 2.0

Photo 2. based on by Daria / epicantus, by Epicantus, CC-by-2.0

Photo 3. based on Scrabble – Resume, by Flazingo Photos, CC-by-SA 2.0

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The International Internships Blog is a collaboration by The Intern Group staff, alumni and current participants to give you career advice & tips, program information, & so much more!