Article Title: How Not to Get an Interview
Author Byline: Mary White, M.A., SPHR
Author Website:

People spend a lot of time talking and thinking about what they can do to find and obtain their ideal job. Unfortunately, they don't always stop and think about the things that they are doing that keep them from accomplishing this goal. One faux pas in the job search process can negate the effects of fifty things you do right. That's why this article focuses on real life stories about resume issues that often keep people from getting invited to interview for the jobs they want.

When submitting a resume for a job, make sure that the objective on the resume matches the job for which you are applying. If you are applying to work at a veterinarian's, don't turn in a resume that indicates your objective is to work in a meat packing plant. If you are applying to work at XYZ Consulting, don't mention GTL Consulting in the objective. When it comes to objectives, neutral wording is most effective. A good example of an objective is: "To obtain an entry level administrative position in a healthcare environment." Of course, this is only a good objective if it actually describes the job for which you are applying. Don't mail a resume with this objective to an oil and gas refinery.

Further, your resume must be free of spelling, grammatical, and typographical errors. Do not describe your last job as one in which you did "bunches of stuffs for costumers: in the store. If you don't know what is wrong with the above sentence, you should consider hiring a professional to write your resume. Use spell check, but don't rely on it. "Costumers" is a word, so spell check is happy. Spell check doesn't know that you really meant "customers".

Your resume must be typed. No part of it can be handwritten. This means that if you move, you cannot use correction fluid to block the old address and write the new one over it. When typing your resume, select a font that is easy to read and that will fax well. Verdana, Arial, and Helvetica in 12 point are ideal for resumes.

Make sure your resume is clean, neat, and professional in appearance. Do not send wrinkled or smudged resumes to prospective employers. Do not use scented, patterned, or pastel paper. White, gray, and beige are the perfect colors for resume paper. If you mail your resume, use a matching envelope that is typed.

Make sure that you include contact information on your resume. If you forget to put your phone number on your resume, the employer isn't going to hunt you down. The employer will move on to someone who pays attention to "little" details like this.

Make sure any e-mail address on your resume is appropriate. Email addresses along the lines of gangsta@whatever.com, redneckboy@whatever.com, or sethsmom@whatever.com are inappropriate. You can get a free e-mail account from a number of sources to use just for job hunting. If you include an e-mail address on your resume, make sure to check for messages regularly. If you don't respond to an inquiry from an employer in a reasonable period of time, the assumption will be that you are not interested.

By definition, a resume is a brief summary of your work history and qualifications. Do not include personal information on your resume. Do not mention your children, marital status, health history, hobbies, weight, or other such irrelevant information. Do not ever include a photograph with your resume unless you are applying for a modeling or acting job.

Your resume must be accurate. When an employer discovers false information on your resume, you will almost always be disqualified from being considered for the job. Some employers will fire active employees if it is later discovered that the lied on your resume. Conversely, don't provide them with information they may use against you. If an employer asks questions about your credit or criminal history in the job interview process, by all means be honest. But don't send a copy of your credit history or criminal background check with your initial application unless specifically requested.

About the Author
Mary G. White, M.A., SPHR is the Training Coordinator for for Mobile Technical Institute & MTI Business Solutions, where she specializes in human resources, management, and marketing training. She teaches open enrollment classes for MTI, provides on-site corporate training, and frequently speaks at conferences and association meetings. MTI also provides a variety of consulting services, including IT Training, certification testing, HR consulting, custom database development and website solutions. For career and business development tips, see MTI's blogs, Daily Career Connection and Daily Biz Solutions.

Article courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap, a content exchange service sponsored by CollegeRecruiter.com, a leading site for college students looking for internships and recent graduates searching for entry level jobs and other career opportunities.

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