The 4 Most Obvious Resume Rules You Forgot to Follow

Captain Obvious to the rescue!

Yes, on the RezScore blog, we love sharing tips and tricks to help you write your very best resume. Sometimes, even the smallest details matter and we want you to get it all right.

However, every job seeker has had a moment when they simply forgot that oh-so-important resume rule. The kind that makes you want to smack your forehead and groan.

As a refresher, here are the four most obvious resume rules you forgot to follow:

1. Always proofread!

I understand that you’re a busy person. Hey, we all are. You might be busy, but that isn’t an excuse not to proofread your resume at least twice before sending it off to impressionable employers. For instance, if you fail to proofread, you might find instead of “public relations,” you listed a completely different industry on your resume.

2. Keep it simple.

This is a multi-part rule:

First, keep the language simple. You might be a rocket scientist waiting to impress the world with your jargon, but the HR manager reading your resume isn’t. List qualifications in industry-wide, simple terms.

Second, keep the flow simple and well organized. There are so many nifty templates out there, but you’re better off with a clear flow that doesn’t assault the eyes. Your resume is one in a million (seriously), so it shouldn’t be hard to read.

3. Attach it first

Nothing makes an applicant seem more scattered than an email without the actual resume attached. A great way to avoid this now-you-have-to-send-another-email-with-the-attachment faux pas is to attach the resume first, type the email, and finally enter the address before sending.

4. Tell the truth

Without preaching the 10 Commandments, make sure your resume offers the facts first. Be honest about responsibilities, positions, and length of employment while emphasizing cold, hard facts. Quantifiable accomplishments (“increased sales by 500 percent”) are gold while descriptive ones (“enthusiastically helped sales staff frequently”) are just fluff.

5. Ditch the reference list

Unless the employer is actually asking for a reference, do not include references. Not only are references a waste of precious resume real estate, but you’re also running the risk of an employer calling one of your references whenever they want. It could be today, it could be three months from now. That means your references have no means to prepare themselves for the call.

What do you think? What obvious resume rules are easily forgettable? Share your thoughts in the comments below!


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