Prevent Hiring Mistakes by Recognizing these Resume Red Flags

The resume is the first thing you will see when a candidate submits a job application to your company. Because of this, you can use the resume as a way to determine if the candidate should even be contacted for an interview. Some glaring problems on any resume can jump right off the page. On the other hand, some mistakes might not be as obvious, leading you to look a little harder to uncover them.

Here, we will discuss five red flags to look for, in order to prevent hiring mistakes.

Large Gaps in Employment

A large gap in employment is any period beyond two years. Candidates try to hide this by listing jobs using just years – rather than months and years – hoping they will get the resume in front of the recruiters and hiring managers. There could be a reasonable explanation for the large gaps. Take a deeper look at the candidate if the rest of the resume is impressive.

Using an Unprofessional Email

Email addresses are more important than people realize, because they say a lot about the person using them. Unprofessional email addresses might get a resume tossed in the trash before it is even read in full by the hiring manager. Unprofessional email addresses, such as ones that mention nicknames or sports teams, destroy the candidate’s credibility as a legitimate option for the company.

Resume Does Not Match the Job

Hiring managers do not have time to interpret what is written in a candidate’s resume. They also do not have time to figure out if the candidate meant to write one thing, but wrote another instead. Because of this, any resume that does not match the job for which it was submitted, will be put to the side. This means that the candidate does not have experience matching the job or did not take the time to tailor the resume to that specific job.

Failure to Use Keywords

Keywords help a resume stand out for any specific job, and also show hiring managers the skills required to work the job. When keywords are missing from a resume, hiring managers can deduce that the candidate did not take the time to properly write the resume.  Often resumes are electronically searched based on keywords for the position.

Spelling Errors and Other Typos

Since avoiding spelling errors and other typos seem like they are common sense, we can’t totally ignore them. A resume with even the slightest mistake has grounds for being eliminated for consideration. It gives the impression that the candidate could not take the time to proofread their document before hitting the send button.
As a hiring manager or recruiter, it can be difficult to whittle down a pile of resumes. Do so by looking for the mistakes outlined above. Work with a recruiter at Casey Accounting and Finance Resources to provide you with pre-screened resumes that weed out problematic candidates before you invest time in interviewing.

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What Does It Mean When They Say “We’ll Keep Your Resume on File?”

When an employer says they will “keep your resume on file,” what does this mean to you as a candidate? This is a common recruitment practice that can leave job seekers feeling dismissed and rejected. Understand what this means and that it’s not necessarily a bad thing as we will explain.

First off, it’s generally understood that hiring managers are bombarded with hundreds of resumes from candidates who vary from not qualified to overqualified. They must review all these resumes, and then choose a small handful of candidates who meet the job criteria, and then decide how to proceed from there. It doesn’t matter if your resume was the first or the last to be received, all candidates must be treated equally.  However, if you have sent your resume once they have stopped accepting resumes for the position, it may not even be considered since the top candidates may have already been selected.

At this point, you may have received a letter or email thanking you for applying, but announcing that they have decided to move forward with other candidates at this time. Your resume will be securely stored in a file with the other candidates, and will be grouped by area of skills for future consideration. Very often, hiring managers will refer back to these resumes as new positions are opened, so you could get called back in a few weeks or months.

If you are one of the lucky few who are called for an initial phone or in-person interview, congratulations – you have made the first big cut! This means you have met the general requirements of the job you have applied for on the company’s website or online. Your resume and qualifications are likely to have been reviewed more closely and even by a few people on the hiring team. Your resume is now in a much smaller group of candidates, and you are being considered for the job.

Once you have a phone interview, or have been asked to come in for an interview, you are in an even better position. This is your chance to impress the hiring manager and convince the company how your contribution can help their company succeed. If you have this interview and you then get a rejection letter, your resume will end up being stored with the job type and skills, and may even be passed around the company (in a secure file) to see if any other managers or teams may be interested in you.  Sometimes, the candidate they did offer the job to initially is unable to accept the position, and the interview process starts all over from the beginning.

Remember, getting told that your resume will be kept on file is not necessarily a bad thing. It’s a required human resource practice to hold the resumes and applications of qualified candidates on file for at least six months for EEOC guidelines (equal opportunity). Feel free to reapply for work as you see positions come open you are qualified for, and send in your resume at least once every six months, or as asked.

As a nationally accredited, best-in-class recruitment firm, our staff is well networked in the accounting and finance community, tenured and industry certified. Contact Casey Accounting & Finance Resources today, and we will help you find finance careers in Chicago!

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2015 Mid-Year Salary Survey

With 2015 more than half over, Casey Accounting & Finance Resources has acquired updated salary data in finance and accounting.  The compensation trends change throughout the year and with the fluctuating economy, you need to be on top of your game when negotiating salary numbers.

Looking to learn more about what salary expectations should be? Casey Accounting & Finance Resources can help! We have compiled our salary survey list with updated facts and figures including job descriptions for finance and accounting positions for the Chicago metropolitan area.

Contact us today and we will be happy to share this with you.  In the “YOUR MESSAGE” section, please enter “2015 Finance Salary Survey”.  Enjoy the rest of 2015!

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