If you are proofreading or editing your own resume, I highly recommend that you wait until at least 24 hours after writing it. That gap gives you a chance to approach your resume with a fresh eye. Then you should look particularly for these common mistakes:
- Inconsistent use or wrong use of punctuation (for example, inconsistent use of the comma before “and” in a series; missing periods; or misused semicolons)
- Wrong, incomplete, or difficult to read contact information (especially check your phone number and email address)
- Misspelled company or location names (look them up on the internet to make sure your memory is correct)
- Inconsistent dates of unemployment (for example, your current and previous full-time jobs both are dated “2011-Present”)
- Formatting that changes from the first page to the second (for example, the right alignment changes from justified to ragged right; or you bold your job titles on page 1 but not on page 2)
- Misspellings that are not caught by or are even created by your electronic spell checker (for example, “fiancé” instead of “finance”)
- Extra spaces between words or sentences, especially listed items like skills (the standard is one space after a period, not two)
- Excessive capitalization, especially of common nouns (your spell checker or grammar checker may be responsible for this)
- Fonts that are easy to read on your screen but not on paper—or vice versa (be especially careful of how colored fonts will show up if the resume is printed in black and white)
- Verbs that are not consistent with nouns (for example, “the members of the Board is…”) or that are in the present tense, even though the job described is in the distant past.
Proofreading is an extremely important part of preparing your resume, for mistakes in the resume will automatically disqualify you in the minds of hiring managers and recruiters. They want employees who will be attentive to detail when it counts most.
Therefore, you should never rely just on electronic spelling and grammar checkers, but make sure your resume is proofread by someone who knows grammar and spelling. If you must DIY, and you aren’t confident of your skills, then please consult online dictionary and grammar resources.
Better yet, trust your resume from start to finish to Robin’s Resumes®. We are here to help.