7 Things to Leave Off Your Resume

Crafting your resume comes with some pretty standard guidelines—like listing a professional email address and scouring the page for typos and grammatical errors before sending it out. But some mistakes aren’t so obvious. Check out the major things to leave off your resume!

1. High School experience

The jobs you had in high school just aren’t going to cut it anymore. Employers are more interested in the internships you took on in college, the professional campus organizations you were a part of, and career experience in your field of study. Knock that high school babysitting gig off the page.


2. Irrelevant experiences and accomplishments

You may have been a member of the Outdoors Club in college, but that probably won’t help you get a job in accounting. Your resume should be as tailored to your prospective job as possible. Be mindful about whether or not the experiences and accomplishments you’re listing out have obvious skills that transfer over to the position you’re applying for.


things to leave off your resume


3. Objective statements

Objective statements made our list of things to leave off your resume. Not only do they take up valuable space, but they rarely tell employers anything groundbreaking. You’re a recent grad looking to dive into the industry? So is everyone else applying for the position! Save the description for your cover letter where you can get more in depth about who you are professionally and what your goals are for the future.


4. Basic skills

Many times—especially when you don’t have much career experience to list out yet—it’s easy to get carried away listing out anything and everything you can under your skills section. It’s basically understood that most people applying for jobs can send emails and use Microsoft Word, so nix those basic skills from your resume and stick to a shorter list of more impressive expertise.


5. Paragraphs and fluff

A crowded resume doesn’t mean it’s more impressive! Include as much relevant information as you can, but in a concise manner. Take away any text-heavy areas and stick to short bullet points. Remember, employers can spot fluff from a mile away! There’s no need to drag out your job experience with long and fancy explanations when it can be summed up in a simple – and more impactful – phrase.


6. Lies and over-exaggerations

The current job market is super competitive, and it can be tempting to inflate your accomplishments. However, it’s NOT worth lying. Be sure to only feature jobs, skills, and accomplishments that you can actually back up if you make it to the interview. Your interviewer knows what they want, so they will be able to tell if you attempt to cover up a lie on your resume.


7. References

Once again, this is simply using up space that you could be using for something else. If an employer requires references, they’ll have no problem asking for them. No need to write out, “References available upon request.” They don’t need the invitation!

Have any more questions about your things to leave off your resume? Drop them in the comments below!

In the meantime, check out 8 Reasons Your Resume Might Have Been Overlooked which features advice directly from Career Experts!

things to leave off your resume

things to leave off your resume


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  1. Robbie Seward says:

    I am 51 years old and I interview people for hands-on technical repair jobs regularly. I interview younger and older people for these jobs. MS Office knowledge is a must for any job now. Younger people mostly have some experience with Office applications, but are lacking in other forms of relevant skills and experience. It seems to be just the opposite for older applicants. I have recommended people for hire who stated that they have capabilities in Office applications but turns out that they did not. In my opinion, it should be stated on a resume’ what relevant experience a person has with MS Office applications. In my experience, making an automatic assumption concerning this is a big mistake.

  2. Charlene says:

    Great info thanks!

  3. Veronica At Chief Resume LLC says:

    I work as a direct hire recruiter & certified resume writer. You definitely still need an objective. Some employers specifically ask for it when I submit candidates.

  4. Petra Biddle says:

    I agree with you. The Internet and software technology is still too young to assume that everyone has the basic skill set. All of the skills that are listed on an application should be addressed by the interviewers. This gives them additional verbal time to interact with the applicant.

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