If you are searching for work, you undoubtedly recognize the difficulties when competing for jobs of any level. Landing your ideal job is challenging enough, but it becomes even more frustrating when your resume isn't strong enough to grab the attention of recruiters. Due to this competitiveness, many job seekers attempt to embellish or exaggerate their experience in order to make their resume attention grabbing. However, exaggerating your qualifications is not only unethical, but ineffective as well. It is important to understand that there are usually negative consequences for those who exaggerate on their resume. Here are some tips to help you create a truthful, yet bold resume, without exaggerating your skills.
The purpose of your resume is to market yourself and promote your skills to potential employers. An employer views a resume as a document that is factual regarding your education and work experiences. So the primary use of your resume is to weigh the facts you present against other applicants to determine who is best suited for the position. Not only should your resume contain factual information, but it should be backed up with facts that can be substantiated through your references. When you blatantly exaggerate your skills, it can hurt your chances of landing an interview as well as cost you the position, if you do the get the job.
There are several consequences that can result from exaggerating your skills. However, one of the most important things that can go wrong is that you may have difficulties meeting the expectations of the position. Overtime, if you continue to struggle at the job in which you claimed to be experienced in, fellow employees as well as the employer will become suspicious of your abilities. Suspicion can cost you in a number of ways, including:
The truth of the matter is, there is nothing to gain from embellishing or exaggerating your skills on your resume. But, how can you make yourself stand-out from the other applicants? Here are a few ways you can make improvements to your resume without stretching the truth.
Rather than embellishing a skill or an accomplishment that you do not have, find other ways to describe the qualifications you do posses. For example, if you have experience filing documents from a previous position, but during your previous employment you also came up with an idea to make the filing system in your department easier. On your resume, you could include; filing documents as well as initiated and developed a new filing system that was usable for the entire department. In this situation you will be providing a description of the work you are experienced in as well as offering insight to leadership abilities.
Your cover letter is the perfect way to introduce yourself to potential employers as well as back up the claims you are making in your resume. A vivid cover letter can give potential employers a picture of who you are as well as who you are as a job candidate. When creating a cover letter you are essentially telling those who read it a story about why you adore this chosen field, how you have reached a current level of success, challenges you have overcame and what you have learned along the way. Your cover letter can provide potential employers with a sense of your commitment and your diligence.
If you are unhappy with the qualifications you currently hold, work on improving them. The easiest way to improve your qualifications, is by enrolling in college classes or certification programs. Not only will the classes improve your qualifications, but it will also demonstrate your willingness to improve on your skills. Take pride in the qualifications you do have and the fact that you are working toward improving these qualifications.
It is far better to admit that you do not know something, than to jeopardize your career and your reputation by pretending that you do. The primary qualities that employers look for is passion and eagerness. If you do not have the skills required for a specific job, but you think you may be a good fit for the position, make your case in your cover letter. The important thing is to let your credentials speak for themselves and to make it clear to the hiring manager that you are willing to learn.