You have probably told yourself that one little mistake on your resume will not hurt your chances at a job. Please think again. A 2018 survey by CareerBuilder asked hiring managers about the most common resume mistakes that cause them to toss out a resume. Number one, the choice of 77% of respondents, was “typos or bad grammar.”
As a professional resume writer, I have a keen eye for typos and bad grammar. I use online spell checkers and grammar checkers, but I also proofread, because even the best spell checker and grammar checker can make mistakes.
For example, a spell checker will accept this sentence: “Collaborated with the manger of the fiancé department.” Every word is spelled correctly, but the sentence should have read: “Collaborated with the manager of the finance department.”
A grammar checker will accept this sentence: “Lead a team of engineers that delivered a project under budget.” The sentence was part of a past job description and should have read: “Led a team of engineers who delivered a project under budget.”
When I proofread, I check for items that are easy to overlook and that grammar and spelling checkers will not catch:
- Missing periods at the ends of sentences; a missing parenthesis or quotation mark in a pair; or a switch from serial comma (before “and”) to no comma.
- Changes in spacing between bullets or headlines or between words.
- Inconsistent dates. On the CareerBuilder survey, one human resource manager mentioned a resume where every job listed had the same employment dates.
- Inconsistent spelling and capitalization. For example, “start-up” and “startup” are both correct spellings for the noun but you should stick with one. Most people now spell “cloud” with a lower-case c, but if you want to spell it “Cloud,” make sure you do that consistently.
- Mistakes in acronyms or association names. For example, SHRM is the Society for Human Resource Management. If you call it SFHRM or Human Resource Managers Society (HRMS), you are making a mistake.
Make sure that you print and proofread your resume several times before you send it out. If you do not feel confident in your grammar and spelling skills, please contact me.