Typos and Misspellings a Top Peeve of Hiring Decision-Makers

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Top Notch Executive Resumes Hiring decision-makers surveyed for the book, Top Notch Executive Resumes identified this as one of their Top 30 Executive Resume Pet Peeves: Resume has spelling errors, typos and grammatical flaws. Hiring decision-makers cited this peeve more than any other. It may surprise some that misspellings and typos pervade even executive-level resumes, but they do. A job-seeker-submitted sample considered for the executive resume book, for example, contained the common error of spelling “manager” as “manger.” You’ll note that this misspelling won’t be picked up by spell-check functions because “manger” is a correctly spelled word. So is “posses,” the plural of posse, which I often see on resumes when the job-seeker intends “possess.” “I once received a resume where the applicant misspelled the name of the University from which he received his MBA,” said Jeff Weaver, regional manager for a global information services company. “Poor spelling and grammar … is particularly worrying,” said Pete Follows, senior consultant, for SaccoMann, Leeds, UK. “If a candidate is not giving due care and attention to a document to improve their own personal circumstances, what care would they take with documents with less personal significance?” A few tips on avoiding typos, misspellings, and grammatical errors:
  • Use spell-check functions but remember that they aren’t enough.
  • Proofread. Then put the resume down overnight and proof it again in the morning with fresh eyes.
  • Try proofing from the bottom up. Reading your resume in a different order will enable you to catch errors that you may have glossed over before because your brain was accustomed to reading your verbiage in the expected order.
  • Ask a friend or family member to proof, preferably one who is a meticulous speller and grammarian.
  • Be careful about company and software names, which are frequently misspelled and can damage your credibility.
  • Consider hiring a professional resume writer.

See all 30 peeves: executive resume peeves 1-10 in Part 1, executive resume peeves 11-20 in Part 2 and executive resume peeves 21-30 in Part 3.

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