Resumes are meant to show you at your peak and to inspire hiring managers and recruiters to invite you for an interview. Therefore, they should:
- Never contain complaints about a former company. If you had challenges in your last job—if it was a bad fit, the manager harassed you, or a promotion you expected went to someone else—the resume is not the place to complain.
- Never provide information that is illegal for the company to have. That information includes your race, religion, marital status, and health issues. The only exception is when the information is relevant to the job; for example, you are applying for a role in a religious organization. Health issues that might impact your work are best mentioned during an interview—with the understanding that, if a job requires lifting 50 pounds, for example, your inability to lift 50 pounds will disqualify you.
- Never hide gaps in your employment; hiring managers or recruiters will uncover the lie and imagine something worse. In some industries, short work periods are the norm rather than the exception (for example, fashion and engineering may fall into that category). In other cases, such as a gap to take care of an ill family member or recuperate from illness or raising a child, it is best to be honest. If possible, show that you acquired or used transferable skills during that time, including as a volunteer.
- Never assume that the hiring manager or recruiter knows what you know. You should give a very brief description (one sentence or less) of any company that is not a household name, define acronyms (and make minimal use of them), and always tie results closely to the technologies or scientific processes you mention.
If you are unsure how to handle your departure from a company, sensitive information you want to share, or complex technical and scientific skills, please contact Robin’s Resumes® today. We have solved those problems for hundreds of job applicants.