SURVEY SAYS: Is Your Resume Updated?

March 31, 2014 (PLANSPONSOR.com) – Last week, we covered a survey about catch-phrases used on resumes.
By PS

I asked NewsDash readers if they keep their resumes updated, and how many of those catch-phrases identified as turn-offs by hiring managers surveyed are on their resumes.

The majority (56.3%) of responding readers indicated their resumes are updated, while the rest said they are not. More than one-quarter (26.7%) of respondents reported their resumes are updated both online and on paper.

Nearly one-quarter (24.4%) indicated their resumes are only on paper, and not updated, while 17.8% each said their resumes are updated online, and their resumes are updated only on paper. Just more than 2% said their resumes are online, but not updated, and 11.1% reported their resumes are both online and on paper, but not updated.

As for the turn-off catch phrases, nearly one-half (48.1%) of responding readers admitted their resumes contain the phrase “detail-oriented.” More than one-quarter (25.9%) each indicated their resumes include “team player” and “self-motivated.”

The other turn-off catch phrases are on the resumes of the following percentage of respondents:

Best of breed – 11.1%;

Go-getter – 0%;

Think outside of the box – 7.4%;

Synergy – 11.1%;

Go-to person – 11.1%;

Thought leadership – 3.7%;

Value add – 14.8%;

Results-driven – 11.1%;

Bottom-line – 11.1%;

Hard worker – 11.1%;

Strategic thinker – 3.7%;

Dynamic – 7.4%;

Proactively – 14.8%; and

Track record – 11.1%.

 

In the verbatim comments, several readers shared good reasons to keep a resume updated, and a few weighed in on the use of catch phrases in them. Of course, quite a few couldn’t resist the opportunity to use those catch phrases in very clever and amusing ways in their responses: “I will be retiring soon, so my resume is not getting updated. However, I did tell my wife that after I retire I will definitely be self-motivated, a team player and her go-to person,” is an example. Editor’s Choice goes to the reader who said: “I once worked for a company that was in trouble (regulatory) and during an employee meeting, one (very brave) person asked a senior exec if they should update their resume. The answer was priceless and I will always remember it, and apply it. The answer was ‘I annually update my resume, regardless of the situation. That way, I can take stock of where I am in my career and ensure I’m on track with my goals, and also be ready for any situation or opportunity that arises.’ Great advice.”

Thanks to everyone who participated in our survey!

Verbatim

I'm self-motivated to proactively keep my resume updated.

 

I see more of these catch phrases on performance reviews than resumes.

 

My resume is always up to date. One never knows when one will lose his/her job... There seems to be less and less employment loyalty (from either the employer or the employee). I am always on the lookout for my new position. Shhh! Don't tell my employer!

 

It frustrates me that resumes have evolved to the point where those with fancy resumes (that they probably didn't write themselves) are more likely to be reviewed than the humble hard worker who doesn't have a fat ego. Personally, I think a resume should be about your experience and your knowledge only. Save the personality stuff (hard worker, go-to person, etc) for the interview - they'll be able to tell what is real and what is fluff. But if the resume is too perfect - I'd be inclined to pass it by and go for the person who shows the skills and the experience I'm looking for.

 

I've worked for the same organization for 22 years and do not have a resume.

 

Only update when need to send it somewhere. The resume itself doesn't have such phrases, merely a list of duties and results in a % format. A cover letter won't contain these phrases either since I'm being brief while trying to sell my actual self, not trying to fill a letter with empty lingo.

 

I've worked for the same company for 34 years and although I've transferred within the company, I don't have a resume.

 

I once worked for a company that was in trouble (regulatory) and during an employee meeting, one (very brave) person asked a senior exec if they should update their resume. The answer was priceless and I will always remember it, and apply it. The answer was "I annually update my resume, regardless of the situation. That way, I can take stock of where I am in my career and ensure I'm on track with my goals, and also be ready for any situation or opportunity that arises." Great advice.

 

The last time I updated my resume was so long ago, I don't think most of those catch phrases were in the common business lingo! Besides, they are mostly adjective phrases and I was taught that a resume should show evidence of skills and achievements.

 

So close to retirement that I don't believe I will need a new resume any time in the near future. I do believe that online resumes are the future and paper is out.

 

When I was younger I always kept it updated. I have now reached the age that I hope to not need it again before I retire.

Verbatim (cont.)

Since I am detail oriented, I immediately removed that catch phrase from my resume!

 

Proud to say my resume contains none of these phrases!

 

Accomplishments, not adjectives, are what works.

 

I will be retiring soon, so my resume is not getting updated. However, I did tell my wife that after I retire I will definitely be self-motivated, a team player and her go-to person.

 

I updated my resume a year ago and there were not any catch-phrases then ...and there are not any today. As a "hard worker", I have a "track record" of updating my resume annually. The "Bottom-line" is that I really like what I do and "proactively" make updates as my role changes, which does make me "results-driven". If I were interested in a new position, I would find myself to be "motivated" to prepare "dynamic detail-oriented" resume.

 

It's always good to keep a resume updated because you never know when an opportunity might arise and then you are ready.

 

I don't think one or two catch-phrases are bad on a resume, but as a hiring-manager, I usually gloss over them and get straight to the facts. I personally don't use catch-phrases as I don't talk that way. I like to keep it real.

 

You should always keep your resume updated - you never know when the perfect opportunity will arise. As a hiring manager, I read a lot of resumes and I hate the phrase "best of breed". Are you a dog? And I guarantee that no one can really explain what Synergy is. And I love a resume that states the candidate is detail oriented, when I find spelling errors. Double points if "detail" or "oriented" are spelled wrong! Stop worrying about using catchy phrases and tell me what you've done. I'm going to figure out whether you are legit or not in the first 15 minutes of talking to you anyway.

 

My resume is electronic but not on-line. Because I'm currently employed, I'm always afraid that someone's job is to see if current employees are actively looking for another job while they're employed, and if there are layoffs, those will be the first to go. If there are bonuses, those will get the smallest bonus if it's obvious that they're not interested in the job they currently have.

 

No catch-phrases on mine. Heck, they weren't even invented yet and would have been too hard to chisel-in anyway.

 

At certain levels (and I feel that I've attained this), traditional mores and standards still seem applicable. But entry level candidates must increasingly fit their individualism into some hiring mechanisms' template that filter based on specific criteria. They do indeed screen for certain word usage, but I suspect they pay NO attention to the "catchphrases" cited above. But is that a good thing?

 

 

NOTE: Responses reflect the opinions of individual readers and not necessarily the stance of Asset International or its affiliates.

«