cringing at bad resume

Bad Resume? How to Identify It & How to Fix It!

Have you ever come across a resume that made you cringe? As recruiters and resume writers, we have seen our fair share of bad resumes, and we know firsthand how frustrating it can be for both job seekers and hiring managers. A bad resume can be a major turnoff for potential employers and can ultimately cost you the job you want. And the worst part is you may not even know why!


From spelling errors to unprofessional email addresses to failure to demonstrate results, there are lots of mistakes that can make a resume stand out for all the wrong reasons. In today’s job market, it’s more important than ever to have a strong resume that showcases your skills and experience in the best possible light.


In this article, we’ll explore:


1. Some of the most common mistakes that job seekers make on their resumes 
2. Tips on how to avoid them.


Whether you’re just starting your job search or you’ve been at it for a while, we hope that this article will help you create a resume that stands out for all the right reasons.


Your Resume is Bad and You Should Feel Bad Too?!

Let’s face it, we’ve all made mistakes on our resumes. But some mistakes are worse than others. If you’re not getting any callbacks, it might be time to take a long, hard look at your resume and make some changes.


First of all, if your resume is more than two pages long — and you’re not upper management or executive-level —  we’re sorry to say that nobody is going to read it. We know you’re proud of all your accomplishments, but you need to learn to be concise. Stick to the most relevant information and leave out anything that doesn’t directly relate to the job you’re applying for.


Another big mistake we see all the time is using fancy fonts and colours. Yes, colours! We get it. You want your resume to stand out and look cool and sexy. But trust us, using Comic Sans or neon green text is not the way to do it. Let the content take care of that. Stick to a clean, professional font like Arial or Times New Roman and use black text, or dark grey (if you absolutely insist on being different!).


And please, for the love of all that is pure and holy, proofread your resume! We can’t tell you how many resumes we’ve seen with typos and grammatical errors. It’s the easiest thing to avoid and a surefire way to get your resume thrown in the trash. Take the time to read over your resume carefully and have a friend or family member look it over as well.


Finally, don’t lie on your resume. We know it’s tempting to exaggerate your accomplishments or stretch the truth a little. We know… “everybody’s doing it”. But it’s not worth it. Employers can usually tell when someone is lying on their resume, and if you do get interviewed or hired based on false information, you’ll likely be found out at some point.


Remember, your resume is your first impression to potential employers, so make sure it’s a good one!

Common Resume Mistakes

When creating a resume, it’s crucial to make sure that it is polished, professional, and error-free. Unfortunately, many job applicants make common mistakes that can hurt their chances of landing an interview or job offer. In this section, we’ll discuss some of the most common resume mistakes and how to avoid them.

Formatting Faux Pas

One of the most common resume mistakes is poor formatting. A cluttered, disorganized resume can be difficult for hiring managers to read and may give the impression that you lack attention to detail.


To avoid this mistake, make sure your resume is easy to scan and visually appealing. Use bullet points, headings, and white space to break up large blocks of text. Choose a clean, professional font and make sure your margins are consistent.

Lack of Relevant Experience

Another common mistake is failing to highlight relevant experience. When crafting your resume, make sure to emphasize experience that is directly related to the job you are applying for. If you don’t have much relevant experience, consider highlighting transferable skills, such as communication or problem-solving abilities, that could be valuable in the position.

Typos and Grammatical Errors

Perhaps the most damaging mistake you can make on a resume is including typos or grammatical errors. These errors can make you appear careless or unprofessional and may cause hiring managers to question your attention to detail. To avoid this mistake, proofread your resume carefully and consider having a friend or family member review it as well. You can also use tools like spell check or grammar check to catch errors.

How to Fix Your Bad Resume

Like we’ve said, if it’s broken it can be fixed! This applies to your bad resume too. All you have to do is identify the problem… or problems.

Tailor Your Resume to the Job

One of the main reasons why a resume might be considered bad is that it is too generic. We often make the mistake of using the same resume for every job application. However, this approach won’t get us very far.


To fix this issue, you need to tailor your resume to the job you are applying for. This means analyzing the job posting and highlighting the skills and experience that match the job requirements. By doing so, we can show the employer that we actually read the job description, and we’re right for the job.

Focus on Accomplishments, Not Just Duties

Another common mistake we make is that we focus too much on our job duties and responsibilities. While it is essential to mention these, it is equally important to highlight our accomplishments. Instead of simply listing our job duties, we should focus on the impact we made in our previous roles. For example, instead of saying “Managed a team of 10 employees,” we can say “Increased productivity by 20% by implementing a new training program for the team.”

Use Action Verbs

Using action verbs is an effective way to make your resume stand out. Action verbs not only make our resume more engaging but also demonstrate your skills and accomplishments. Instead of using passive language, you should use active language. For example, instead of saying “Responsibilities included,” you can say “Achieved” or “Implemented.”

Proofread, Proofread, Proofread

One of the most common mistakes that can make our resume look bad is typos and grammatical errors. To avoid this, we need to proofread our resume multiple times. We can also ask a friend or family member to review our resume. A fresh set of eyes can often catch errors that we might have missed.


By following these tips, we can fix our bad resume and increase our chances of getting hired. Remember, our resume is often the first impression we make on the employer, so it’s essential to make it count.

Final Thought…

People make mistakes when putting their resumes together. It’s just that type of document. But it’s all good. With a little bit of effort and attention to detail, you can avoid (or fix!) these common pitfalls and create a resume that truly shines.


So… to recap, here’s a little cheklist:


1. Take the time to proofread your resume. Spellcheck is great, but it won’t catch everything. Read through your resume multiple times and have someone else look it over as well. You never know what you might miss!


2. Make sure your resume is visually appealing. Use a clean, easy-to-read font and organize your information in a logical manner. Consider using bullet points to break up dense paragraphs of text and make your resume easier to scan.


3. Tailor your resume to the job you’re applying for. Don’t just send out the same generic resume to every job posting, as tempting as that is. Take the time to research the company and the position and make sure your resume highlights the skills and experiences that are most relevant.


With these tips in mind, you’ll be able to create a resume that stands out from the crowd and puts you on the short-list of prospects and employer.

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