9 Things You Should Never Put on Your CV
There are so many ways of writing a good CV. We’re often advised to put various kinds of information on our CV. But in our attempt to make the CV impressive, we tend to get carried away.
Here is a list of 9 things that you should avoid putting on your CV.
- Too much personal information: Your name, contact information and employment history details are relevant and necessary, so you must have them on your CV. However, you needn’t offer too much personal information. Avoid having your photo on the CV. Nor should you feel the need to specify your gender, age, sexual orientation, religion or caste. While there is no harm in doing so, it may unnecessarily bias the employers against you. So, it is best to avoid such personal details.
- Irrelevant work experience: Read the job description carefully and modify your CV accordingly. Recruiters prefer and pay more attention to short and clear CVs, so it is advisable to exclude work experience that is in no way relevant to the job you’re applying for.
- Spelling and grammatical errors: Spelling mistakes and poor grammar on the CV is surprisingly very common. One in every two persons is likely to have an error of this nature on his/her CV. Be sure to check your spellings thoroughly (including names of organisations, names of people, titles of degrees, etc.). Use a spell check if you’re not too sure of your spelling. It’s also a good idea to get someone else to read your CV to point out any mistakes.
- A quirky email ID: Back when email was still new and trendy, most of us went ahead and created email IDs with some very quirky usernames that had very little do with our real names. However, when you’re putting your email ID on your CV, make sure that it’s a fairly uncomplicated and serious-sounding one (i.e. it has something to do with your name). Recruiters tend to take people with appropriate email IDs more seriously.
- Negative language: You have to be sure to sound positive in your CV. Don’t refer to your previous job as a “mistake” or as a “waste of time” or even “boring”. Instead, use words and phrases that have a positive impact on the reader, such as “valuable experience”. Even if you feel negatively about an ex-boss or a previous job, don’t express it in your CV. Moreover, don’t emphasise what you think may be your shortcomings. Focus on your qualities, skills and positive traits.
- Incomplete or false information: We all like to use our CVs to make ourselves look good. But if you bend the truth or lie in any way (about your previous roles, qualifications, etc.), it will mostly likely be found out and you will be disqualified. Maintaining honesty and accuracy on your CV is of utmost importance.
- Too much information: A good CV is always a short CV. It is not necessary to list out all the things that you have done in your career. Recruiters prefer to engage with candidates who can tell the irrelevant info apart from the relevant details. Stick to the key roles, projects and skills. If you’re a fresher, a one-page CV on an A4 size sheet is a good length. Two pages are acceptable for experienced candidates.
- Unrelated hobbies: If you must mention your hobbies, stick to only a select few, and especially to the ones that you think may be relevant to the job. For instance, mentioning hobbies like “collecting stamps”, or even achievements like “won the singing competition in school” have no relevance.
- Too much creative expression: Sure, you want your CV to look good and to stand apart from the rest. But is your CV easy to read? That’s the first thing that matters to the recruiters. Don’t use fancy words, stylised fonts, images, and underlined or bold text. Keep the format clean and easy to read.
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Arun Sehrawat June 18, 2015
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