“Charity begins at home” goes the old adage. On similar lines, your first impression begins with your Curriculum Vitae (CV) too. Yes, the CV is the first official/ written point of contact you make when reaching out to your prospective employer. Your CV with its content and presentation alone decides whether you’ll get the interview call or not.
Even though your CV is such an important aspect of your career profile, it is unfortunate to see even in this day and age people make unfortunate mistakes while preparing their CV.
Look out for the following basic errors which are a major turn off for recruiters! You are to strictly avoid them while preparing or updating your own CV.
1. Grammatical & Typographical Errors
This is a strict no-no. Not only does it send a wrong message about your language skills but also your dedication. I mean grammar and spelling checkers are freely available on the internet. You should run whatever you write under the watchful scanning eyes of a grammar checker before finalizing your script.
Unfortunately, this is all too common even these days when everything is available at your fingertips. Come on people!
(Source – Pinterest)
2. Including Your Photo
Yeah, I understand your urge for selfies but please avoid putting stupid pictures on CVs! There’s no need for your recruiters to see your face even before they see your face on the day of your interview. There is a separate DV (Document Verification) section or whatever it is called allotted to just that.
As per my experience, this is all too common, especially in India. Remember, there’s no need to include a photo of yours on your CV. Make it look professional. Make it look you mean business!
(Source – Pinterest)
3. Using Weird Or Over-Decorative Fonts
𝐿𝑒𝓉 𝓂𝑒 𝓅𝓊𝓉 𝓈𝓊𝒸𝒽 𝒶 𝒹𝑒𝒸𝑜𝓇𝒶𝓉𝒾𝓋𝑒 𝒻𝑜𝓃𝓉 𝓉𝑜 𝓈𝓉𝒶𝓃𝒹 𝑜𝓊𝓉!
Right? Wrong! You and your CV need to be professional. Use default business fonts through the entire text. You can embolden the headings or subheadings but that’s about it. No adventures here. You’re writing a CV trying to convince the reader of your employability and not your digital scrapbook at school.
This will be less pronounced if you’re vying for any graphic designing related jobs, but it is still safer to venture within the limits of business correspondence conventions.
4. Using Bright Colors
On similar lines as the above, please refrain from using overtly bright colors as well. Stick to black and maybe one additional color in blue. Red, green, yellow, orange are simply no-nos.
Again, if you’re a graphic designer you may use some extra colors but make sure they are not annoying or distracting to the eyes. If you have to use extra colors, refrain from using dark shades of red and use shades of green. This is because as per basic optics, red-colored light has a lower wavelength and resulting in a higher frequency. This bombards the vision of the on-looker. On the other hand, green lies somewhat in the middle of the electro-optical spectrum when it comes to the wavelength of green light rays, thus creating a soothing effect on the eyes.
Look at the following graphic to remember this hack. As you can see, the colors at the left end of the spectrum irritate our vision to a larger extent than those at the middle and right end.
But as I mentioned earlier, it’s always best to stick to official document colors.
5. Too Lengthy
Yes, a CV is typically longer than a Resume but that is not to say that you should go write essays over there. Whatever you need to say, convey it briefly. This is an art – to be able to be precise and concise in your approach.
Understand the psyche of your recruiter or whoever is scanning the CVs. They are probably doing like tens of CVs per day and nobody wants to read long texts. They just don’t have time to read all of that. Highlight your key skills, include your job experience and roles (if you have some work experience) but do so briefly.
Also, it’s not a good practice to including every damn thing. This is because there is a trendy question they ask in interviews these days – “Tell me something which is not there in your CV”. You will have some wriggle room if you have left out something to convey verbally.
6. Including Your Hobbies
While it’s good to let them know what good stuff you pursue in your spare time, some recruiters might get annoyed. After all, if you exclude the human aspect, nobody is professionally bothered about your hobbies. Even if they are, they’ll ask you during the interview itself. Give them that room.
Save that space and include something professionally relevant to boost your employability.
(Source – Altervista)
7. Including Your Previous Salary
Unless that is an explicitly mentioned requirement, it’s best not to include your previous/ current salary on your CV. Your salary is kind of confidential as well as better suited for verbal discussion/ negotiation. Keep it clean and uncluttered.
8. Including Irrelevant Skills/ Job Experience
It’s great that you have some coding knowledge/ experience but there is no need to include it in the copy of your CV you’re sending to aa non-coding job interview. I mean it’s always good to showcase your entire skillset but then again, the people going through your CV might find it irrelevant or even downright annoying.
The best practice is to tailor-make your CV for the different types of job roles you might be applying for. That way your CV will remain updated and custom made for that job role/ company.
9. Including Unproven Claims
Unsubstantiated claims of being the ‘Numero Uno Employee’ in your previous/ current company sounds good but if not backed up with hard data can quickly turn counter-productive. Whatever you say, make sure it is backed up with verifiable proof. This brings us to our next and last point.
10. Lying/ Projecting something that you are not
Trying to appear something that you are not might get you in hot water. You should always portray the true self of yours. This way, you won’t have to take the trouble of covering some kind of unproven fact/ downright lie with another lie.
Just show what you are, what skills you have, what you have done, and what you can do given you’re selected. That’ll suffice. Honesty is the best policy folks!
(Source – Pinterest)
Now you know the 10 most basic errors to avoid while making preparing your CV.
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