I have had the honor to serve as an employee of Workforce Solutions for over 25 years! Throughout that entire time, there is still much confusion about what information should and shouldn’t be on a resume. Resumes are opportunities to showcase and market your most unique knowledge, (job-specific) skills, and accomplishments. The goal is to get a shot at an interview and get a job offer.
Before you apply for your next position, let’s test your current knowledge about the purpose of a resume. Today, we will clarify five common resume misconceptions. This discussion should help raise the bar on your resume’s overall value.
Personal pronouns must be used on a resume. FALSE
Personal Pronouns should be eliminated when creating a resume. Examples of personal pronouns: I, you, he, she, we, it, they, me, him, her, us, them, and it.
Action verbs are not needed. FALSE
By deleting all personal pronouns from your resume, you will often uncover action verbs that can strengthen each of your bulleted statements. Check out this list of 500 Resume Action Words That Recruiters Love To See in 2023 to add more professionalism to your resume.
For example, here is a statement before removing the personal pronouns:
- I reported directly to the financial manager of my company
And here it is starting with the original action verb instead of the personal pronoun “I”. Notice that all the pronouns are gone. This simple step makes for a much more concise statement!
- Reported directly to the senior financial manager of a Fortune 500 company
Job-specific skills and keywords aren’t necessary. Based on my job titles, employers should already know what I do. FALSE
Job-specific skills and keywords are routinely listed by employers within the requirements of job descriptions. Therefore, you should also address them directly on your resume. When qualified, address each skill from the requirement’s list. Otherwise, the employer has no way of knowing you have the potential to become a great fit! Use any industry-specific keywords routinely given throughout the requirement’s list and mention your direct knowledge of them.
For example, the Requirement section of an employer job posting states that a candidate must have the following:
One year of data entry experience within a Call Center environment with a minimum typing speed of 65 wpm.
You are qualified based on the requirements listed in the job description. However, you not only meet this requirement, but you also exceed the employer’s original expectations. It’s time to capitalize on this fact. Document the statement on your resume by using your accomplishment numbers.
Two years of Call Center data entry experience with the ability to type 85 wpm.
The keywords “Call Center” and “data entry” are job-specific skill. Your typing speed exceeds the employer’s expectations. So, 85wpm is considered an accomplishment.
That’s all for today! I hope you enjoyed the information presented while learning something new. Please join me next time for part two of, “5 Common Resume Misconceptions,” to continue to test your knowledge of what a resume should be.
Frieda Carmouche is a member of the Regional Facilitator Team specializing in training and development of students, job seekers, and career center staff. She is comfortable with individual coaching and large group presentations. Frieda is honored to have served and was chosen as the team’s first “Mentoring Coach.” She obtained her BFA in Graphic Communications and minored in Psychology from The University of Houston Central Campus. A native Houstonian with a passion for workforce development; she is extremely proud of her rewarding 20+ year career with Workforce Solutions.