11 Causes Why Your Resume Is Not Working

In: How To

The process job-searching has a number of pitfalls. In particular, you have probably faced the situation when you send dozens of resumes every day and get surprisingly little responses. This situation is quite frustrating and you start asking yourself, ‘What the problem might be? Is it the job market, lack of relevant experience or my resume format?’

According to Work it daily, if you’re not getting interview calls, the problem is very likely in your resume. If you’ve written a resume on your own and didn’t consult any hiring managers or resume writers, it’s likely that you’ve created a document in a way which isn’t appealing to a hiring manager. So, it’s time to have a closer look on your resume and check whether any of the above applies to your resume:

  1. You’re not qualified enough for the job
    There are multiple reasons why your resume isn’t getting much feedback. However, most of the cases the answer is pretty simple: your resume didn’t demonstrate qualifications and experience which are crucial for the job. If the job posting for Senior Accountant requires 10 years of experience in this field and all you have to offer is 5 years of experience as an accountant, don’t expect that they will get in touch with you.
  2. You’re overqualified
    Another extreme is when your experience and skills are more than the position requires. For example, you’ve previously worked as a marketing executive, but struggle getting job due to the recession in your field and would like to get a job as a senior marketer. If you present all your achievements and skilled, your application is likely to be rejected as you’re obviously overqualified. The only way to get an interview invitation is to rewrite your resume and eliminate all the experience which is ‘too much’ for an inferior position.
  3. You still believe in one of the widespread resume myths
    Resume myths and misconceptions have confused many candidates and deteriorated their job search. Check the main resume myths and correct your resume if necessary.
  4. You use a vague objective statement
    Objective statements that sound like ‘To obtain the position with a reputable company where I can develop my skills as a teacher and tutor’ are outdated, take the precious space of your resume and don’t add any value. As stated by Work it daily, objectives fail to highlight your value for the employer over other candidates. Thus, if you still use an objective - remove it, or, which is even better, replace it with a career summary.
  5. Your career goals are unclear
    In addition to your skills and knowledge, another important trait you should demonstrate to a prospective employer is your career goal and motivation (You can do this in a cover letter). Explain why you are personally interested in obtaining a position and how it aligns with your long-term goals. For instance, when applying for a restaurant manager, you can mention that you would like to gain leadership and administrative skills as you’re interested in starting your own restaurant business in the future. Or, if you are in the process of career change, give proper reasoning why you are taking this risk – employers always appreciate this.
  6. Your resume is overloaded with job descriptions rather than achievements
    Many applicants don’t bother much with presenting their best results when writing job descriptions – or copy and paste job descriptions from the web. Needless to say that generic bullet points like ‘Supervised a team of 5 sales associates’ cannot entice the hiring manager and urge him to rush to the phone and invite you for an interview. Better think of what you have achieved in your previous position. Maybe, your efforts saved the company time, or money, or you’ve attracted new clients, or streamlined office procedures. If you can support your words with figures, you’ve halfway through writing a successful resume.
  7. Your resume lists everything you’ve done rather than highlights
    A resume isn’t your autobiography. Stick to this rule every time you wish to overload your resume with unnecessary details from your career history. Money.usnews.com says that the employer will only scan your resume during 20 seconds, so the more irrelevant facts you include, the less are the chances they will notice your key skills and accomplishments. Being short and concise and making the resume easy to read are the keys to getting noticed.
  8. You are discriminated against the personal information you’ve included
    Including your marital status, age, nationality or photography comes across as unprofessional. However, what is even more, you can be discriminated against one of the above pieces of information. It’s a well-known fact that married women who have no children are in risk of rejection even without the interview invitation. Elderly job-seekers and applicants with non-American names also suffer from discrimination. So, remove any personal information and dates which can indicate your age (for instance, if you’ve graduated over 10 years ago, it’s okay to delete graduation date. Jobs that you’ve held at the beginning of your career can also be removed).
  9. Your resume has one or several ‘red flags’ for employers
    Job hopping (the situation when you change jobs more often than once a year), employment gaps, career going backwards – all these tend to be seen as the ‘red flags’. If your resume contains at least one of them, make sure to correct or address these issues in your resume. Otherwise, you’ll be missing on quality job opportunities.
  10. Your resume is rich in fluffy self-descriptions rather than measurable results
    As stated by Money.usnews.com, people try to look their best on resumes and often overuse the subjective traits. That’s why an average resume is usually stuffed by phrases like “creative innovator”, “thought leader” and “excellent communicator”. Although phrases of this kind make your resume sound solid, they add absolutely no value and lead your resume to nowhere as hiring managers usually ignore the statements which are not supported by facts. So, if you believe you’re great in team leadership – prove it by giving the results the team has achieved under your supervision.
  11. Your social media contains inappropriate information
    Before inviting you for an interview, the hiring manager is likely to check your internet presence. Employers usually scan Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter of the applicants to find out whether the person has a professional image and whether he/she is worth dealing with. This rule mostly applies to government and corporate jobs. Make sure your online pages are flawless and have no controversial images or posts – you won’t believe it how many applicants failed to get the job just because of the drunk pictures or inappropriate posts.

Whether you like it or not, your resume is first and foremost the marketing document. Your task is not only to list that you’ve got everything that it takes, but also to engage the hiring manager to keep your candidacy top of mind. So, if you have everything what it takes to get the job but still you’re not invited out for an interview, the problem is obviously in the way you are presenting yourself on paper.

If you have used the advice above and still get little interview calls, consider getting a help of a skilled resume writer. Our resume experts will analyze all aspects of your resume and assist with creating a copy that presents your skills best. If you want to hear a professional opinion on your resume right now, contact us for a free online resume critique.

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