Skills to Avoid Including on a Resume

You are not sure which skills to include—and which to leave off your resume? Incorporating relevant talents strengthens your candidacy. Some abilities, however, do not belong on your CV, and mentioning them may actually hinder your chances of being chosen for an interview. When deciding which abilities to showcase, be selective and detailed.

The individual who reviews your CV is interested in the value you can bring to the firm, which means being a good fit for the job requirements listed in the company’s help-wanted post.

Here are some pointers to assist you determine what information to put on your resume (or not).

Resume Skills to Omit

Hiring managers want to know why you’re a strong candidate for the job, not everything you’ve ever been qualified to do. A CV should not offer a lot of information.

You Lack Competencies

This may sound simple, yet many people exaggerate their abilities or include capabilities on their resumes that they do not possess. According to a CareerBuilder poll, more than three-quarters of human resource managers (75%) had caught a resume lie.1

If you lack any of the talents required by the company, you should reconsider applying for the position. Don’t make up abilities or expertise only to gain a job. In the long term, it will come back to haunt you. If you meet any of the prerequisites, it may be worthwhile to apply; otherwise, save yourself and the employer time by focusing your job search elsewhere.

Even if you’re a quick learner, you might not understand everything you need to know if you obtain the job. If an employer hires you and discovers you are unable to perform the employment, you may be dismissed.

Skills That Are Outdated

If you are or were skilled at working with obsolete software or technology, such as MS-DOS, Lotus 1-2-3, or Vista, don’t include it on your resume. Keep your ability to backup files onto a floppy disk to yourself.

Many technologies have become obsolete, and knowing how to utilize them is only useful in exceptional cases. In fact, it may make your knowledge appear quite old, and the employer may mistake you for a tech dinosaur.

If you have been out of the job for a long, take the time to update your CV with current abilities that employers want and value.

Skills That Aren’t Required for the Job

Leave out any abilities you have that are unrelated to the job. If you are looking for a variety of positions, consider making a separate resume for each one. This will assist you in avoiding including talents that are irrelevant to the post.

There is no advantage to demonstrating to an employer that you have a different skillset than what they are looking for in the ideal candidate. Listing irrelevant talents can make you appear unqualified for the position, which can entail being overqualified as well as underqualified.

Overused Skill Expressions

LinkedIn produced a list of keywords that individuals overuse in their profiles.2 Some of these words are also inappropriate for your CV. Consider whether another, more descriptive term would better describe your abilities before using them. Here are some examples of words from LinkedIn’s list of overused words: Experienced. Skilled, Leadership, Passionate, Expert, Motivated, Creative, Strategic, and Focused

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Skills That Are Too Broad

Don’t include broad talents, especially if you’re seeking for a technical position. For example, instead of saying “computer talents,” include the programming languages, hardware, software, apps, and other skills that qualify you for the job. If you have any certifications, be specific while listing them. List QuickBooks Certified ProAdvisor, AWS Certification, SQL, iOS, or Java, for example.

To be more specific, you can divide your skills into subcategories. For example, you may have one portion listing the languages you speak and another listing your specific computer talents. Of course, just list skill subsections that are relevant to the position.

Everyone Should Have These Skills

Some of the overused buzzwords listed above represent talents or characteristics that companies already anticipate as a minimum prerequisite from job applicants.

Employers anticipate that if you are hired, you will be focused, have some experience (unless you are seeking for an entry-level position), and will do a great job. You do not need to include these fundamental assumptions in your resume for the employer.

Similarly, do not include Microsoft Word, email, or web searching. Employers expect everyone to understand the fundamentals of practically every office job in today’s workplace.

Emphasize Your Most Relevant Skills

While there are some abilities you should avoid including on your resume, there are others you should. According to Monster’s Future of Work 2022 poll, the most in-demand talents are:

  • Soft abilities
  • Teamwork/Collaboration
  • Communication
  • Critical Thinking/Problem Solving
  • Hard abilities
  • Technology of Information (IT)
  • Strategic Thinking
  • Operations

Focus on the talents that demonstrate why you’re qualified for the jobs you’re seeking, and be sure to mention any in-demand skills.

You can include your best skills in a separate “Skills” section and use them into the job descriptions you write for previous roles. You can also include them in the summary section of your resume, if you have one.

Take the time to examine and update your resume before submitting it to apply for a job. This will give you the best chance of getting an interview.

Examine the Job Posting

How can you tell what the employer is looking for in a job candidate? You can learn a lot from the job posting, but it would also be beneficial to spend some time investigating the job and the firm to acquire more specifics.

Here’s what to look for in a job advertisement, including how to analyze the job title, qualifications, prerequisites, duties, and required experience.

Match Your Qualifications to the Job

Now that you know what the company is looking for, match your qualifications to the job.

In one column, make a list of the talents listed in the job posting.
In the second column, list your talents and experience that qualify you for the job.
Include the talents that are the closest match to what the employer is looking for on your CV.

The skill words you include will serve as keywords for the ATS (applicant tracking system) that the company employs to screen applications. If you’re a good fit for the job, your qualifications and skill set demonstrate to the hiring manager that you’re a viable applicant.

If you have to stretch your skill descriptions to satisfy the job requirements, you’re probably not a good fit.

Customize Your Resume for the Job

Although job advertising may appear to be similar, each business has a unique set of qualifications. Even if the job appears to be the same, each employer may be looking for something different. Take a few minutes to update your resume to reflect the position you’re seeking.

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