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Career Coach

The Twelve Steps of Rejection, Part 2

Published December 18, 2013 3:57 PM by Renee Dahring
This week I am finishing up with the last half of my list of the 12 reasons why your resume may have been rejected.  

6. Too generic. You submitted a one-size-fits-all resume. Job seekers often fall into the trap of thinking that they only need to create ONE resume. In today's job market employers want to see resumes that are tailored to each position. Customizing your resume shows an employer that you are interested in that specific position and that you cared enough to take a few minutes to craft a resume that fits. This is one of the reasons why I don't advocate hiring someone to create your resume for you. One resume simply cannot meet the requirements of every position. 

5. The job skills you listed sound suspiciously like the definition of an NP or PA. I read a lot of resumes and for some reason in the majority of them the job seeker describes their work experience with some version of this: "Performs physicals, interprets labs, prescribing and patient education" or "manage acute and chronic conditions." To which I say, "No kidding?" 

4. Mind the gaps! Dates have to be sequential. You must explain any gaps in your employment that are longer than a month. Unaccounted for time in your resume is a huge red flag. If you were out of work then acknowledge the fact with a brief entry so that you don't look like you are hiding anything. There are lots of legitimate reasons that you may have been unemployed but an employer just sees the gaps. If you were out on maternity leave, caring for a family member, or the last clinic you worked at went broke and laid you off then just say it! 

3. "TLTR" Do you know what that means? "Too long to read." Resumes that are more than 2 pages tend to get ignored. Recruiters and hiring managers skim when reviewing a resume. This means that you better have your most important info on the top of the first page or it may not be seen. And the more that you can have on the first page the better because the reader may never get to the 2nd and 3rd pages.  

2. Show your credentials. Believe it or not job seekers often forget to include their licenses and certifications. NPs are particularly prone to omitting their nursing license on a resume. This is critical, because the first reviewer may actually be a computer program, and if you leave off credentials you may appear not to meet the requirements of the job. 

1. Yadda, yadda, yadda. Get to the point. Resumes that contain too much irrelevant information, such as non-pertinent, non-medical jobs or skills, obscure the very point you wished to make. Employers are only interested in reading what qualifies you for their position. Remember, the purpose of the resume is to market yourself and get you an interview. Irrelevant information does not accomplish that goal. 

Editor's note: Click here to check out reasons 12-7.

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    Occupation: Nurse Practitioners and NP Recruiters
    Setting: correctional healthcare/career consulting/teaching
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