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Terrible CVs

(455 Posts)
PymChurchBeach Tue 30-Jun-20 10:11:15

Disclaimer: I know times are hard and shitty right now and a lot of people are desperate for work so probably chucking out CVs left right and centre at anything and everything.

BUT. I have worked in HR for nearly a decade now and it has always been the same. The general standard of CVs is bloody awful. I'm recruiting for a mid level role at the moment and I have seen the following:

- people using little hearts and stars instead of bullet points
- massive glamour model style photographs taking up the whole first page of a CV
- people's dates of birth and marital statuses written up at the top. Just no!!!
- wacky, colourful borders and fonts. Comic sans. Enough said.

Also - this last one is possibly controversial but when women have had a break to look after DC, there really is no need to list all the skills gained as a SAHM - e.g. "excellent time management skills etc". You can just say you had time out to raise children. That's all you need to say. I'm not going to think any the worse of you for it.

I am desperate to implement application forms rather than have CVs and cover letters but my CEO is old fashioned and will not have it.

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SweetPetrichor Tue 30-Jun-20 10:23:02

It's depressing that so many people can't prepare a professional CV. There's guidance online...it's not hard. It does make it very easy to bin people straight off the bat though!
I think the SAHM thing is because people come to think of it as a job. I don't understand it myself. If a lady was working and had children, she wouldn't go listing her childcare skills on her cv, so why would someone who has taken a career break do so. It's completely irrelevant. It's one that really annoys me because it makes a bad impression of women in general...makes it seem like we think chasing around a toddler is the same as working in a job.

StrictlyAFemaleFemale Tue 30-Jun-20 10:27:52

Re: dob, marital status and photo - are these applicants foreign? Only I work in a jobcenter in Denmark and photo is practically a must, most include status and some dob. And occasionally I have to tell people that full body shot in a bikini is not appropriate.

AtaMarie Tue 30-Jun-20 10:30:34

I once read one where someone had listed “magic mushrooms” under “interests”. Shame, because they’d spelled everything correctly otherwise.

Haffdonga Tue 30-Jun-20 10:41:33

Inappropriate email addresses. I've seen many along the lines of dopehead@hotmail, hotsexkitten@yahoo, bigdongdave@whatever

And then there are the ones which are impossible to correctly transcribe xxxl1il1iil0o0oxxx@sky

Oh well, it leaves all the more jobs for the rest of us.

PymChurchBeach Tue 30-Jun-20 10:54:35

Oh yes terrible email addresses are another one!!! lilmisssexy21@hotmail.co.uk or similar

Do not even get me started on the cover letters which accompany some of these!

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PymChurchBeach Tue 30-Jun-20 10:55:18

Re: dob, marital status and photo - are these applicants foreign

Nope!

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DGRossetti Tue 30-Jun-20 10:58:41

Just bin them.

My bugbear was spelling ...

sashh Tue 30-Jun-20 11:01:41

The email thing, students really HATE using school or college emails but often their own email is something totally inappropriate and is sexysomething@ stoner@.

You are applying to uni, use the school email.

Mamette Tue 30-Jun-20 11:03:22

They always state that they have “excellent attention to detail” while the cv is peppered with errors, sometimes even within the actual sentence itself.

I once had one with a photo that was two girls on a night out cheers-ing cocktails. I didn’t even know which one was the candidate. When I brought her in for interview (I was desperate) she was wearing leggings as trousers and a cropped top 😐

EssentialHummus Tue 30-Jun-20 11:03:29

I write CVs for a living. This is all I see grin. I am astonished at director-level candidates with CVs in Comic Sans/listing that they are proud Eagle Scouts/explaining that they've been with their spouse for 25 years. I can only imagine that they were headhunted for their previous roles.

DGRossetti Tue 30-Jun-20 11:04:37

The email thing, students really HATE using school or college emails but often their own email is something totally inappropriate and is sexysomething@ stoner@.

If someone who is putting themselves forward for a 21st century role doesn't know how to create a respectable looking email address for professional use, then they would have done me a favour and automatically ruled themselves out.

DGRossetti Tue 30-Jun-20 11:06:22

When I brought her in for interview (I was desperate) she was wearing leggings as trousers and a cropped top

When I interviewed, it was a given that 25% of invited candidates wouldn't turn up.

Which sounds bad, but isn't quite as bad as the candidate who gets the role not turning up on the first day because they'd "changed their mind".

Awwlookatmybabyspider Tue 30-Jun-20 11:06:53

"My bugbear was spelling"

Is that a valid reason to say someone should be out in the scrap heap and told. 'They're unemployable'. Just because they have trouble spelling doesn't mean they wouldn't be an excellent worker. Obviously it does depend on the line of work.

BlingLoving Tue 30-Jun-20 11:11:10

I can forgive a certain lack of professionalism up to a point because I think people honestly don't know better. Obviously, an HR professional knows how a CV should be done and it seems obvious to you.

Having said that, it is weird how little thought people put in too. I help people with CVs quite a lot and I'm always amazed when they send me their first rough draft and they've listed some senior role with a few basic responsibilities. They've been doing the job for 10 years and THIS is all they can come up with?

yy to endless descriptions of school sports, cooking, travelling etc.

JasperRising Tue 30-Jun-20 11:13:09

Re: dob, marital status and photo - are these applicants foreign

Nope!

It is possible that they researched how to write a CV and ended up on a site aimed at applying in other countries. That's the problem with all the global information we can get our hands on - you have to pretty switched on about where stuff is written/who it's aimed at/what differences there are between countries. You see it in here with advice about education, accessing healthcare, legal advice, child contact arrangements etc.

DGRossetti Tue 30-Jun-20 11:16:24

Is that a valid reason to say someone should be out in the scrap heap and told. 'They're unemployable'. Just because they have trouble spelling doesn't mean they wouldn't be an excellent worker. Obviously it does depend on the line of work.

Think about it carefully ... I really don't give two shits if a candidate can spell or not.

Haffdonga Tue 30-Jun-20 11:17:04

I've seen a 25m swimming certificate achieved at primary school listed on a 50 something year old's CV. confused

SwelteringInTheHeat Tue 30-Jun-20 11:17:06

sashh

The email thing, students really HATE using school or college emails but often their own email is something totally inappropriate and is sexysomething@ stoner@.

You are applying to uni, use the school email.

Gmail/Hotmail/Yahoo etc are completely free. It's easy to set up an innocuous email, so there's no excuse for hotlittlethang@whatever.com or down2fuck2020@whatever.com

Belvoirbeaver Tue 30-Jun-20 11:22:01

The worst one I saw had a personal summary at the top that started with "As a Scorpio...." hmm

Dicotyledon Tue 30-Jun-20 11:23:47

Jobcentre tells is to list the useful skills we gained while being Mums. So nice to see that is a waste of time.

WhoWasThatMaskedWoman Tue 30-Jun-20 11:28:53

The all time worst was a cv I found in an old filing cabinet while tidying the office which stated “On my wife’s side I am related to the Dukes of _shire”. It was a while ago and in a work environment notorious for more than its fair share of Hoorays but even then it was jaw-droppingly crass.

WhoWasThatMaskedWoman Tue 30-Jun-20 11:31:47

The twee “have been working as chauffeur, chef, administrator, accountant, first aider and general manager in a domestic environment” stuff is marmite at best. Even the more straightforward “my time as a SAHM has taught me the following skills” is a toss up on whether your readers will go for it.

PymChurchBeach Tue 30-Jun-20 11:32:45

The spelling and grammar thing goes without saying. The thing is that even if you do have problems spelling, would you not at least trouble to use spellcheck or ask someone who can spell to look over it?

My other bugbear is the listing of all the hobbies. I have just rejected a CV because it had an entire A4 page dedicated to the applicant's hobbies, none of which were relevant to the job. I don't care if you ride horses or enjoy mountain climbing!!!

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PymChurchBeach Tue 30-Jun-20 11:33:33

I've also had a cover letter that started "my name is Jane and I've been married happily to John for 15 years. We have three wonderful children..."

confused

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