We all know that Resumes must have certain pieces of information to make it easy for readers to understand your qualifications.

But just as important as what you put on your resume is what you must shouldn’t put on your resume. In fact, here are 3 items you need to remove right now if they are taking up any valuable real estate on your latest and greatest resume. (Warning: This information does NOT apply to government resumes or federal resumes. Those are completely different.)

  1. Objective 

    If you have an “Objective” statement at the top of your resume, please remove it immediately. The only time you should have an “Objective” on your resume is when you are creating a federal resume and applying for a government job… that is a whole different ball of wax (which you should research separately). For your regular, private sector or non-profit resume, the reality is that no one cares what your objective or goal is… they care what you offer, what skills you have, what qualities you bring to the table as a prospective employee / problem-solver. They skip right over the “Objective” you write. So instead of “Objective,” be sure you have a “Summary of Qualifications” or a “Professional Profile.”

  2. High School Diploma 

    If you completed your high school diploma but did not complete a higher degree such as an Associate’s or a Bachelor’s, it is perfectly acceptable to simply leave the “Education” heading off of your private sector resume. Having your high school diploma on the resume unnecessarily draws attention to the fact that you did not complete a higher degree. Be sure you list any technical skills you have, but not the basic HS diploma. We actually prefer to see an “Education and Training” section wherein you list any professional training and/or college courses you have completed in bullet format. (How you state your college courses and training could go something like this: “College studies in Economics, English Literature, and Accounting at XYZ Community College. Corporate training in Customer Service.”) Bottom line, if you only have a diploma, don’t put that on there. It does not add enough value to warrant inclusion.

  3. References Available Upon Request

    This is a very old-fashioned line that was required once upon a time on private sector resumes. Employers know that you will provide references if they request it. This simply wastes white space on your resume and white space is a good thing. It allows the eye to rest. So drop this line immediately if it’s on your current resume. (Your main goal as far as references are to simply make sure you have 3 professional people lined up, who can vouch for your good character and serve as a reference for you if they are called upon.)

So, are there any resume “don’ts” that you are particularly adamant about? If so, drop us a line and let us know!

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