Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Résumé Mistakes

When applying for a job in IT/IS or really anywhere technical, don't lie or exaggerate on your résumé. Skilled people will find out and you will likely not get the job. Or worse, you will get a job that you are not qualified to do and from which you may ultimately get fired, thereby ruining your career, your reputation, and possibly your life.

Quite frankly, it's better to underplay your skills and impress people then to exaggerate and disappoint.

My favourite memory of this is a long stream of candidates answering job postings which specified "experience with Unix and Linux systems" in the required skills. If you are going to put "extensive experience with Unix and Linux" on your résumé, then you should, at the very, very least, be able to name at least one Unix variant.

And "uhhhh..... Red Hat?" doesn't count.

1 comment:

  1. Over the last 5+ years of doing interviews I have seen some pretty huge mistakes and lies on people's resumes. Many people just rely on acronym soup to get past the HR screening.

    Once you are granted an interview you had better know your resume inside, out and backwards. Everything on it is fair game.

    Same story as above (although rbarrett was not present for this interview). Candidate had "strong experience with UNIX commands" on their resume. We asked them how their UNIX skills were and what sort of Linux / UNIX experience they had. We asked 3 times just to make sure there was no communication problems. They had none - no "strong experience with UNIX commands", no experience with Linux or UNIX at all! Complete lie on the resume.

    Advice: if you have only a little experience with a technology; state it clearly. Do NOT just toss it at the end of a list of acronyms - if you do you might as well have underlined it too. A skilled interviewer will ask you about those. Don't put a single thing on your resume that you can't rock an answer for.

    Good luck with those resumes and interviews.