Job Seeker Do’s and Don’ts

When looking for a new job, make sure you remember these do's and don'ts:

Don't: Dress inappropriately.
Do: Use proper attire.

Don't: Exaggerate or fake details, facts or experience.
Do: Be honest.

Don't: Leave large gaps or absences in your employment history.
Do: Explain these gaps by saying "returned to school," "helped friend start a new business," "traveled," or other reason. If your reason is health related or due to a disability, it is your personal decision whether or not to disclose this fact. (Unless your problem prevents you from doing the job safely, it is probably not necessary to disclose.) If the gap is less than one year, do not list it. There is no written rule that says you must account for every month of every year.

Don't: Forget to include any activities you may have done during an employment gap.
Do: List these in your skills and accomplishments; they may include qualities useful for the position.

Don't: List a specific pay rate.
Do: Use a pay range that reflects the local area, if appropriate to the application.

Don't: Use words like "fired" or "let go".
Do: Instead, use words to describe the situation like "moved," "seasonal employment," or "laid off." However, you should be ready to explain.

Résumé Do's and Don'ts:

Don't: Think a title speaks for itself. Job titles can often be misleading and can change from one company to another.
Do: Provide position titles and descriptions.

Don't: Leave the reader guessing where and when you were employed.
Do: Clarify dates and places.

Don't: Apply for a job requiring skills not mentioned on your résumé.
Do: Tailor your résumé so that it is appropriate for the position you are applying for. Coordinate your educational or career credits according to length or the importance to the reader.

Don't: Leave fragmented sentences or be long-winded on your résumé. This will virtually assure you of a place at the back of the line.
Do: Organize your thoughts in a clear, concise manner.

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