1. Age or date of birthThere is no need to include your age or date of birth in your CV since age discrimination legislation dictates that employers cannot discriminate based on a person’s age.
2. Meaningless career objectiveOne of the things that annoy employers and recruiters the most is meaningless career objective statements. You know the ones: ‘A hard-working individual looking to join a progressive organisation where I can further develop my skills’.
3. Unprofessional email addressBe sure to use a professional email address such as email@example.com rather than firstname.lastname@example.org which screams a lack of maturity and professionalism.
4. Lies or misleading informationAvoid embellishing your CV with untruths or little white lies. Not only is it fraudulent, but your dishonesty will inevitably be found out at some stage of the recruitment process or worse, on the job.
5. Colourful and fancy fontsA CV is not the place to show off your desktop publishing skills unless you are applying for a graphic designer or similar role. Even then, it can be better to stick with a standard, professional layout and direct the reader to an on-line portfolio where they can see your work.
6. Typos and poor grammarThere is no place for typographic or grammatical errors in a CV. It’s very easy to skip over errors when you’ve spent hours developing and refining your CV. Make sure you read, re-read and then have at least another fresh set of eyes proof-read your CV before you send it off.
7. Irrelevant, outdated informationAs a general rule, the content of your CV should only include the most relevant and up-to-date skills and experience. If your work history is lengthy, try trimming it down to the past 10-15 years. You can always make a statement about your earlier experience at the end of your Employment History section.
8. Names and ages of your childrenDetails of your family members should be left out of your CV especially the names and ages of your children. Keep the content of your CV focussed on your professional life.
9. PhotographsIn some countries photographs are acceptable and even expected. In the UK and most other English speaking countries, photographs are not required unless you are applying for a role where appearance is a determining factor e.g. modelling, acting
10. Religious or political affiliationsIt is unnecessary to include your religious or political affiliations in your CV unless divulging this information would be a distinct advantage i.e. if you are a practising Catholic applying for a role as a Teacher at a Catholic school.
Anything we've missed? Feel free to comment in the comments section below.
Lisa LaRue, MCareerDev, BSocSc(Couns&HumServ), DipCareerGuid, RCDP, MAC is a Career Coach and Career Development Consultant at CareerWorx with more than 18 years' experience helping people plan and manage their careers.