Avoid This Hidden Resume (and career) Self-Sabotage

Do you know the common mistakes made with your resume, that only your prospective employer will ever see?

That’s right, no advisor nor coach vetting your resume will ever see it.

Nor will you ever see your own goof-up.  It’s completely hidden.

They simply will never phone you. “What a horrible tragedy to miss that perfect opportunity with a great company simply because you make this one simple avoidable error,” warns Ross Macpherson of Career Quest speaking to HAPPEN members Tuesday in Mississauga. “I hear recruiters complain about it time and again.”

Here’s the trap.  Your great resume can become an unreadable mess that you will never see. 

The tips:

  • DO NOT just cut and paste your resume to make an online Applications
  • DO NOT upload or e-mail your resume as a current MS Word formatted version

Why not just Cut and Paste from MS Word?

This drives recruiters nuts.  Unknown and unknowable to you, many web pages throw away your beautiful flowing resume, and some will actually send an ugly unreadable mess to the recruiter.

MS Word documents include embedded formatting that might fight with the recruiters website.

You could even have all your nice  formatting stripped including hard returns. That makes you carefully formatted resume into a one-line impossible read.

The solution? Do this first before you cut-and-paste:

  1. Open resume in Word.
  2. Click “File” then “Save As”
  3. Under “Save as type” it as type, select “Plain Text”
  4. Rename and Click “Save”.
  5. Open the plain text file and tidy it up. 

Then you can cut-and-paste – making sure that you copy only from the plain text version and keep it in step with your current word-formatted resume. 

Why not just upload or email your MS Word resume “as is”?

 The recruiter (or somebody she forwards it to) may be using software that doesn’t read current MS Word documents well. 

The tip? Save it as a “Word 97-2003” type document.

Check your resume. The more current word versions produce documents with “.docx”. Do not send them to recruiters.

Note: This tip sheet is courtesy of Ross Macpherson of Career Quest.