Resume Red Flags and How to Address Them

According to a recent survey, recruiters spend an average of only six seconds looking at resumes before deciding if a candidate is a strong fit. This immensely brief review process means that recruiters are not in the business of forgiving any errors. Instead, you want to make sure that your resume is polished, and that you’ve left out the four resume red flags discussed below.

1. De-emphasize job hopping
Recruiters don’t want to see evidence of job-hopping on your resume because it makes them worry that you won’t commit long term to your new company. To address this, you could employ two strategies. First, if you worked at one position for only a short time – say several months – omit the position entirely as a way to edit your work experience and display your more significant accomplishments and impact. If this doesn’t work for you, consider a hybrid resume template, and group together positions that had similar duties or titles.

2. Align your digital profile and resume
Recruiters are becoming increasingly likely to review both your resume and your online presence, and 87% of recruiters find LinkedIn an effective vetting tool . Your LinkedIn profile and your resume don’t necessarily always serve the same purpose since LinkedIn is also used for networking. However, the two need to align. A recruiter would understandably consider it curious if titles and dates on the two profiles (paper and digital) were different. Update both profiles so they indicate the same, accurate information.

3. Abandon vague language
So many job hunters lose opportunities to describe themselves fully because they fall back on clichés or vague statements. Replace this non-specific language with accomplishment statements. These statements begin with an action verb that describes something specific you completed in a previous position. The idea is to transform a job duty to a description of your success. Try using this acronym in writing an accomplishment statement:
P= Problem or challenge
A=Action to solve this problem
R=Result of your action

4. Craft a powerful introduction
You want to present a portrait of yourself as an employee before recruiters delve into the nitty-gritty of your resume. To do this, include a summary statement, sometimes called an Executive Summary, at the top of your resume. Only a few sentences or a short list of accomplishments, a summary statement should describe your qualifications as they relate specifically to the position. Highlight your strengths, your competencies as they relate to the role, and your most significant achievements.
At Career Moves, we know the importance of crafting resumes that are beyond reproach. With such a limited window of opportunity to impress, job seekers need to create succinct resumes that demonstrate their fit for the position. We can help. From suggesting action statements to crafting eye-catching summaries, we can help your resume get through that six-second screening, and into the interview phase.