Monday, January 15, 2007

Hausfrau's Resume Tips

Fifty percent of my time at work is spent reading resumes. Over the course of 12 years in Human Resources, I have learned a thing or two about resume writing. I've even conducted workshops. After reading through a pile of truly shitty astonishing resumes today, I felt compelled to note just a couple of things that should NOT be on a resume. Maybe a few of you are looking to update your resumes. Perhaps this will help you. What can I say--I'm a giver.

1. NEVER list hobbies or interests on your resume. Unfortunately, no one in HR cares that you sing in a barbershop quartet on the weekends. No one in HR cares that you volunteer at a soup kitchen. No one in HR cares that your interests are, "hiking, reading and spending time with family." People in HR want to be able to read a resume to see if the candidate's skill set is a match. They have jobs to fill and they don't have time to sift through a massive list of hobbies that are used as filler on a resume. While this may sound harsh, have you EVER heard of someone getting that sweet job in marketing because of their cooking club affiliation? Yeah, I thought not.

2. NEVER put your photo on the resume. I realize that this has historically been a requirement in countries like Japan and France. It isn't here. Your Glamour Shots photo is NOT going to entice someone in HR to pick up the phone to call. Instead, it will be emailed around to various colleagues within the department. And much discussion will occur concerning the choice of hairstyle, blouse and lipstick that the candidate chose for the photo session. Also, please don't put things like your social security number and your age. It's for your own protection.

3. When indicating that you are fluent in something, please make sure that you are referring to fluency in a LANGUAGE. Please do not write that you are "fluent in Micrsoft Word." That's like saying that you are fluent in sending faxes or getting to work on time. Let's also be clear that Klingon is NOT considered a foreign language in the workplace. The only resumes that get forwarded throughout a company for a good laugh faster than a resume with a photo is a resume that features ANYTHING with Star Trek.

Some of you may be rolling your eyes and thinking, "I would never put this stuff in my resume." Unfortunately, for every person who doesn't do this stuff, there are three who do.

20 comments:

Jul said...

That's why I don't have a job yet here (in Switzerland) - I am opposed to putting my photo, birthdate, and marital status on my damn resume, all of which are basically required. Lame!

Misfit Hausfrau said...

Ugh! That is so unfortunate! I knew someone who participated in an exchange program at a staffing agency and she ended up in Japan. It was quite shocking for her to get requests from companies for admin assistants with certain height and weight requirements.

My job is hard enough. I am glad I don't have the added burden of caring whether or not someone is married, too young or too old, and/or hot or not. I just want candidates who meet the qualifications.

HeatherK said...

You have me laughing here. My husband will bring home a stack of resumes when they're hiring and we always have a laugh. The cover letters can get pretty interesting as well!

stefanierj said...

Can't. stop. laughing.

There are many reasons I love you, and this post is one of them. Thanks.

Andie D. said...

Here's another tip: If your email address is something unprofessional such as "sexysugardaddy" or "bunnyfoxy69", DO NOT list it on your resume.

(I've actually seen both of those!)

Misfit Hausfrau said...

That is so true Andie--I can't believe I forgot that! I saw one yesterday that was "hotstud." And I am not recruiting for a porno.

L. said...

Japan has no laws against age discrimination, so job descriptions specify things like, "female, under 35." And photos are still a MUST over there.

Resume requirements change, and maybe the "hobby" people are just behind the times. My mother, now retired from the insurance field, used to list her hobbies on her resume back in the 70`s -- I remember this, because when I was a kid, I read a copy of hers and thought it was hysterical that she listed one of her hobbies as "topical fish," because all she did was bitch and moan whenever she had to clean the aquarium. She was clearly a hobby-less woman grasping at straws, and I`ll bet she wouldn`t have listed anything if she thought she could get away with it.

L. said...

Of course I meant tRopical fish -- though "topical fish" sounds waaaaaaaay cooler.

Pendullum said...

People send pics and say they can speak Klingon???
No way!!!!

Kara said...

In my last job I did a lot of recruiting and hiring. I went all Donald Trump on their asses. I was recruiting and hiring recent college grads and had the attitude of "hey, if you're making the effort to apply, you at least deserve some constructive criticism."

And I did tell "brown candy" That I almost deleted her email because I thought it was porn.

AdventureDad said...

Resume styles differ greatly depending on country. Not putting your age over here is unimaginable while it's a big no-no in other places.

Overall the resume process is more relaxed over here and employers tend to look more at what you can do that what paper you wrote the resume on. Or what clothes you are wearing at the interview.

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BlogWhore said...

wha?

i better spend some time updating my resume.

wordgirl said...

Whew! (*wipes sweat from brow) I've never done any of the things you've outlined here. So...I'm good to go?

kimmyk said...

Oh this is good to know so when I'm looking for a new job and updating my resume-I'll be asking you for pointers. LOL.

Anonymous said...

I love the ones with how wonderful their children and spouse are and where they went to grade school??? OK it is Western KY and yes I have been asked in a job interview " SO?? Where do you go to church. I guess it was because I forgot to list it on my resume ha..ha...ha.

Lori


Lori

minimal_free_reign said...

Wow. This is all so the opposite for Theater resumes. Picture good. Age good. Barbershop quartet...good. Klingon...brekna.

standing still said...

A. Glad I'm not in the job market.

B. Glad I don't speak klingon. Apparently all those hours of star trek really do mean nothing.

Arwen said...

I have been spending a lot of time recently interviewing people and I would have had a lot of fun reading any of these. Instead the resumes I have been looking at seem to be in greek.

The June Cleaver Diaries said...

Ooooh!!! Post about the resume you got that was written by the candidate's friend, and the candidate sent it on without deleting his friend's Madlibs!!!

To jog your memory:

"Dear (Mr./Mrs. Jackass),
I feel I would be an excellent fit at (insert name of random lame company)...."

Manikandan said...

Hi .nice blog.I need to find jobs .can anybody send links of that job websites....
Thank you.....