1. When you’ve sent out dozens of resumes without any response, it can be tempting to consider “spicing” up your resume a little, just to get it noticed. After all, if they would just READ it, they would know how perfect you are, right? Why not try something trendy or unusual just so they at least notice your resume in the midst of the other 721 they received?

    STOP right there. In fact, don’t just stop—Back away from the keyboard, take a deep breath, and really think this through before you do something that may, at best, get your resume thrown right in the trash.
    Here are some gimmicks you should definitely not try. Trust me, recruiters and hiring managers will not fall for these.

    Flaunting an extensive vocabulary (or just using really big words for no reason)-Recruiters generally take just a few minutes to review a resume. If they have to reach for a dictionary just to get through your first job description, you’ve already lost their interest. Not only should you watch out for those seven syllable words, but resist the temptation to make mundane things seem more important by using doublespeak. For example, it may be fun to say “I utilized verbal communication methods to facilitate the transference of queries from those who received our products to those who sold our products” when what you really did was take questions from customers and relay them to sales people.

    Pretty Paper-Forget about using brightly colored paper to make your resume stand out. It will stand out, but more in the “I’m desperate for attention, please notice me” kind of way. That’s not the impression you want to give. And, although it worked well for Reese Witherspoon in Legally Blonde, please do not use scented paper. Stick with good quality white or off-white paper, printed with black or blue ink.

    Copying/Pasting directly from the job posting-This shows both a lack of creativity and initiative. And really ,can you get any lazier? If you are only applying so you can continue to file for unemployment, then by all means, continue. But, if you really want the job, take the time to show some originality.

    It is true that writing a resume can be difficult, and there is no magic format which is guaranteed to generate interviews. If you are having a hard time creating or revamping your resume, there are some good online resources available. Try visiting either of the sites below for help, and remember to always have someone else read your resume before you send it anywhere. It’s much easier for a third party to catch any grammatical errors, so let that third party be someone you know instead of the person responsible for scheduling interviews. 

    About.com Guide to Resumes


    Monster.com Resume and Cover Letter Guide


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