Worst Resume Mistake and How to Avoid It

resumeI recently saw a panel presentation with five college recruiters from five of the country's top employers. Hands down, their biggest pet peeve when it comes to resumes is typos. Many recruiters and hiring managers agree that having a typo on a resume is the fastest way to get placed in the "no" pile. It can be hard to review your own resume. By the time you finish it, you are so close to the situation that it can be hard to spot errors. Here are a few suggestions for catching those pesky typos.

  1. Use spell-check wisely. Spell-check is a great tool, but supplement spell-check with several human rounds of proofreading.

  2. Read the document backwards. Doing so forces you to slow down and pay attention to each word rather than skimming the sentence.

  3. Ask a friend or trusted colleague to proofread the document. It's amazing what a fresh set of eyes will spot.

  4. Get an 8th grade English teacher to read your resume. OK, maybe they are harder to come by, but if you know one, grab them. They will know it all when it comes to spelling and grammar.

I'm not saying that every hiring manager will toss your resume if they find a typo on it. But doesn't it make sense to present an error-free document to a potential employer? It never hurts to double and triple check any correspondence you send to a prospective employer.

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