A good resume lists your work and educational experience, key skills, and accomplishments. It’s essentially a self-advertisement built to give a good first impression to hiring managers. Unfortunately, there are many common resume mistakes that could ruin your job prospects.

The first thing to consider when writing your resume is what position or type of work you hope to land. This will help determine what information to include on your resume and how to organize it. The second thing to consider is whether or not this position requires any special skills or qualifications which may need to be highlighted in your resume.

But we’re not here to talk about how to make a good resume or how to start writing your resume. We’re here to write great resumes, which means avoiding common errors that get in your path.

Common Resume Mistakes to Avoid

Mistake #1 – Not Tailoring Your Resume

Once upon a time, HR pros expected and accepted general resumes from job seekers. Those days are over. That’s why a generic resume with no focus tops the list of resume mistakes. (Note: In the old days, some HR folks expected your resume to list your marital status and other personal information. Those days are also over.)

Thanks to the internet, today’s employers get flooded with resumes. If yours isn’t tailored to the job you want to get, you may as well give up.

What does it mean to tailor your history and relevant skills to avoid a generic resume? If you want to land a job in sales, make that clear. Highlight your sales skills, and be specific! Looking for something in management? Show off your history of leadership.

Mistake #2 – Typos and Grammatical Errors

Some of the most common resume mistakes people make are typos and grammatical errors. Proofreading your resume keeps you from this embarrassing problem.

No matter what you think, prospective employers care about these issues. Ignoring proper spelling and grammar makes you look lazy. That won’t help you get a job.

There are tons of tools to help with your spelling and grammar. One growing in popularity is Grammarly. It helps you to avoid typos and grammatical errors with real-time corrections. As you write, Grammarly highlights any goofs, making it easy to correct them before submitting your resume to employers.

But you don’t have to use Grammarly. Every typing program out there will check your spelling and give grammar suggestions. Use them!

Mistake #3 – Lack of Professional Experience in Your Field

A lack of professional experience is a major hurdle in your job search. Sure, the best way to get experience is by working at the company where you’re applying, but there are other ways to get your foot in the door.

If you don’t have experience, offer to intern at the company where you want to work. This lets you do the following:

• Learn to do the job you want to do

• Get paid while you’re learning

• Network with people who can help you find a full-time position

• Possibly work your way into a full-time job

Can’t find a paid internship? Seek out volunteer experience or take a part-time gig that will lead you toward your desired career path.

Whatever you do, don’t stretch the truth. Lying about experience may be the most dangerous of all resume mistakes. It’s better to have some white space on your resume than to make stuff up.

Mistake #4 – Failure to Use Keywords

Your resume is the first thing potential employers see. Sometimes, however, they don’t even seen it with their own eyes. A computer does the work of weeding out bad candidates.

Therefore, it’s important to ensure your resume has all the right keywords.

Keywords on a resume show you have career experience and goals. They also prove that you’re hungry to continue using and growing your skills.

Not using them is another resume mistake. The more proper keywords you use, the more likely your resume will get attention from prospective employers.

Mistake #5 – Failure To Have a Clear Objective Statement or Career Goals on Your Resume

On top of qualifications, skill levels, relevant experience, and education, your resume should clearly state why you’re applying to a certain job. It lets a prospective employer know why you’re the most qualified candidate for the job. An objective statement at the top can do this.

Granted, you don’t have to label your objective. Just make it clear who you are and what you want in a precise statement. If you don’t have experience yet, that’s okay. There are plenty of creative ways to indicate your education and desire to enter your field of choice.

Need help creating a resume that avoids these common mistakes? Order your resume today!