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Career Tip of the Month


What NOT to Put on a Resume

Picture. Companies do not want photos of candidates because of the liability of discriminatory hiring claims. Putting your face on the cover letter or resume can result in discrimination based on age, race, sexual orientation, national origin and even in some cases disability - all of which are illegal. The exception is if you are applying for a modeling or acting job.

Personal Information. Do not include any personal information beyond your address, email, and phone number. Leave out your age, height, weight, health issues, date of birth, race, sex, sexual orientation, religion, political affiliation, and the names and ages of your spouse and/or children. You should also leave out important numbers that could allow someone to steal your identity, such as your social security number, driver's license number, and any credit card information.

High School. References to high school are eliminated once you are enrolled in college or have graduated from college. If you are just beginning college, then it is acceptable to include your high school on your resume. Beyond your first year in college, eliminate the reference to high school and indicate an expected college graduation date.

An Objective. Unless you are applying for a specific position with the state or federal government, do not use an objective. Instead, use a Career Summary, Personal Branding Statement, or a Qualifications Profile.

Low GPA. If your gpa is below a 3.0 it is better to simply leave it off.

Personal Pronouns. Resumes are written in the objective tense. Do not begin sentences with "I," "me," or "my." Instead, begin sentences with an action verb such as ?supervised,? ?trained,? ?coordinated,? etc.

Old Unrelated Jobs. The general rule of thumb is to include positions that you have held in the last 10 - 15 years, unless an earlier job strongly demonstrates your qualifications.

Names and Contact Information of Former Employers. Do not use your limited resume space to list references or the contact information of previous employers. Instead, prepare a separate list of references that you can include with the resume, if requested, or hand to the employer during the interview.

Salary History. Do not list your current salary, or the salaries of previous jobs, even if the job announcement instructs you to include it. Salary requests are usually used to screen out applicants. It is always best to discuss the issue of salary with an employer in person, preferably once you have been offered the job.

Criminal Record. Many companies will conduct a criminal record search as part of the background check process. The appropriate time to bring up a criminal record is in the cover letter or, better yet, in the interview. There is no need to include this information on your resume.

Disability. If your disability is such that you will require accommodations on the job, then the appropriate place to disclose this information is in the cover letter, or in the interview.

Unrelated Hobbies. Most employers do not want to see your hobbies on your resume. However, if you have a hobby that relates to the job opening, you may include it. For example, if you are applying for a position at a sporting goods store, it would be beneficial to list your interest in a particular outdoor activity or the fact that you participate in marathons.

References. Do not include references on your resume. Instead, prepare a separate sheet of references that you can send to the hiring manager when asked to provide them. Furthermore, because it is assumed that an applicant will provide references, it is no longer necessary to include the sentence, ?references available upon request? at the bottom of your resume.

Spelling or Grammatical Errors. Always proofread your resume. Your resume is your personal marketing piece and is intended to entice an employer to invite you to the interview. A sloppy resume filled with typos or grammatical mistakes will not make a good impression.