The 3 main pet peeves of hiring managers’ CVs and how to avoid them


Resumes are an essential part of job hunting, but even a small mistake on your resume could cost you an interview.

Some mistakes can even force a recruiter to throw your resume in the “no” pile before they’ve finished reading it. According to a 2018 survey by TopResume, a resume writing service, nearly 70% of recruiters said resume breakers, like missing contact details or an unprofessional email address, could cause them to immediately fire a job. candidate of the hiring process.

CNBC Make It spoke with recruiters and hiring managers to find out their biggest pet peeves in their CVs and how job seekers can avoid them.

Spelling and grammar errors

The most egregious red flag career coach Stacey Perkins notices on candidates’ resumes is a misspelled word, followed by poor grammar, she told CNBC Make It.

“It’s going to really put me off,” she said. “After the first or second mistake, I’ll probably stop reading their CVs altogether.” She’s not the only one: 79% of hiring managers in TopResume’s survey cited spelling and grammar errors as no. 1 deal-breaker when evaluating a candidate’s CV.

Perkins reviews resumes and helps clients prepare for job interviews at Korn Ferry, one of the nation’s top executive search firms. The first piece of advice she gives to candidates? “Revise your CV!” she says. “Hiring managers want to be able to see your experience quickly and clearly, not be distracted by spelling and grammar mistakes.”

Outdated LinkedIn profile or portfolio

In today’s digital world, it’s a good idea to include at least one hyperlink to your online portfolio or LinkedIn profile where a hiring manager can see more of your work – but only if that information is up to date. says Ryan Sutton, Robert District President. Half, one of the largest recruiting companies in the world.

Sutton estimates that he has reviewed thousands of resumes during his professional experience as a hiring manager. One of the fastest ways to disqualify yourself as a job candidate, he says, is to have an unprofessional and outdated LinkedIn profile or portfolio connected to your resume.

“It’s an important step that a lot of candidates overlook,” says Sutton. “A link to an old portfolio or profile indicates that you are not conscientious or prepared for the hiring process. “

Sutton recommends updating these sites with your latest work, a recent photo, and a background photo that reflects your professional experience, such as a photo of the city you work in or an image of a workspace. clean.

Resume more than one page

Carter Cast, a professor at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and former CEO of, has reviewed many resumes throughout his career – and submitting a long document is the fastest way to be rejected by a hiring manager, he said. .

“When I get a seven or eight page CV, I moan,” he says. “If you submit a large document like this, the chances of it actually being read by someone are very low.”

Resumes, Cast explains, are important documents for starting a conversation between a hiring manager and a candidate, so keep the bullet points succinct and only highlight what Cast calls “the good things”: big plans, accomplishments. and the results of past professional experiences.

“Don’t be windy,” he said. “If you’ve been working for less than five years, your resume should be no longer than one page, and if you’ve been working for 10 years, it shouldn’t be longer than two pages.”

Have a friend or mentor edit your resume and read your bullet points aloud a few times to make sure the wording is fluent, suggests Carter.

The career expert even followed his own advice. “I have been working for 30 years and have reduced my CV to three pages,” he shares. “It really makes a difference.”

To verify: Want to get your resume noticed? Ditch those overused sentences and add those verbs instead

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