We constantly hear about what you should put on your resume, but we rarely talk about what to leave off.
If you want to write a resume that says “Hire me,” then every word, number, line and achievement must be carefully considered. So let’s hit the backspace button on 3 commonly overlooked things you should remove from your resume ASAP — and why.
1. Irrelevant Hobbies & Interests
Love e-sports? Camping? Coin collecting? Gardening? Everyone has a hobby, and most people think that the more unique it is, the more it will make them stand out from other candidates.
But hiring managers don’t care about how you spend your free time — at least not immediately. They have deadlines and large piles of resumes to review, and right now, they’re just focused on finding candidates who meet the requirements.
Of course, it’s okay to include your hobby if it’s related to the position you’re applying for. If it’s a finance job, for example, mentioning that you like to dabble in cryptocurrency investing can be seen as a plus. But if you’re trying to land a medical research assistant role, don’t bother.
2. Too Many Soft Skills
You must be thinking, But aren’t soft skills a good thing?
Yes, but to a certain extent. Too many candidates overdo it with the soft skills, and hiring managers are very aware of this common ploy, so you might lose credibility when start listing too many.
I generally recommend having more hard skills than soft skills. For the soft skills that you do include, make sure they are demonstrated and not just stated.
Instead of just saying you’re good at multitasking, for example, it’s better to include something like, “Led multiple projects from start to completion, leading to an X% increase in X.”
3. Your Professional Headshot
Unless you want to be chosen as the leading actor for a big screen movie, you don’t need to include a headshot.
In fact, there are potential drawbacks to doing so. For starters, some managers and recruiters have told me that they find it “unprofessional” or even a bit “tasteless.”
It can also lead to unconscious bias. Whether it’s the way you dress, your gender, race, or just how you old look — these are all things that can potentially impact a recruiter’s decision-making, even if it’s done unintentionally.
Lastly, there’s a small possibility that the photo can affect your resume format, leading to technical difficulties when it goes through applicant tracking systems.
This article was originally published by CNBC so if you’d like to read the full list of 7 things to remove from your resume, click here!