15 Things To Leave Off Your Resume

Things to leave off your resume. Why? Because they are either old resume rules or irrelevant and a waste of space. You want to make room for the important stuff by removing these 15 items from your resume.

Leave off the “objective” section.

They all tend to say similar things, -” seeking a position where I can utilize my skills and abilities.” Your resume should focus on what you have done and what skills you can bring to the company. Not the type of position you would like in the future. Replace the “objective” section with a “Professional Summary” section. This should be a high-level overview of your skills and accomplishments. It is likely the first thing Human Resource professionals and Recruiters will read, so you want it to grab their attention.

Leave off “references available upon request.”

It goes without saying that you will provide them if asked.

Leave off your references from your resume.

Having excellent references lined up is great and can be essential in the hiring process. However, this step isn’t done till the candidate is further along in the process. HR and Recruiters will not call your references before interviewing you, so there is no need to include it on a resume. Have your reference page handy for when they ask for it or bring it with you to the interview. In addition, bringing it with you to the interview can be used as a great marketing tactic to help you sell yourself.

Another reason to leave off your references on your resume is because of Applicant Tracking Systems. These systems are programmed to “read” resumes. They are looking for an email address and phone number. This information is then fed through the system so HR and Recruiters can easily view it. The Applicant Tracking System may think your reference information is yours if you have multiple phone numbers and email addresses listed. The only contact information on your resume should be yours, or you might miss out on great opportunities. Now, this is not common, but it is worth mentioning and not worth the risk.

Leave off high school information.

Why? Because it is assumed you graduated from high school. And to be honest, Human Resource professionals and Recruiters could care less about what high school you attended. They are more concerned with your college education. This brings me to my next point, if you did not attend college and only list the high school you graduated from, it draws attention to the fact that you do not have a bachelor’s degree. There is an exception to this rule; If you recently graduated from high school, you may add it. But even then, try to focus more on my skills and accomplishments over your high school education.

Leave off more than 15 years of experience.

Employers are most interested in your recent employment. It also helps to remove clutter. On the other hand, a couple of factors to consider before removing your older experience. For example, the industry, experience level, employer name, and title. If you held a great title with a well-recognized and established company, it is best to leave the title and employer name on your resume but leave off the duties and accomplishments.

Removing the older experience also helps to declutter your resume.

And removing older experiences helps to avoid age discrimination. Yes, I said it. Employers are not supposed to discriminate against age, but unfortunately, it happens. If your resume goes back 20-30 years, the hiring manager can figure out your age with some simple math.

Leave off your GPA when it is below 3.5.
Leave off your degree date when it was more than ten years ago.

Leave off personal hobbies and interests.

It may be tempting to want to show some of your personality on your resume, but really, it doesn’t belong on your resume. It is essential to fill your resume with important information like education, work experience, and qualifications.

Leave off long paragraphs.

Replace these with bullets. Human Resource Professionals skim hundreds of resumes a day. For some reason, a paragraph looks less appealing to read than bullet points.

Leave off pictures from your resume.

Why? Because your physical appearance is irrelevant when it comes to being able to do the job and getting hired. It also takes up valuable space that could be used for content. And not to mention, it is also illegal to discriminate based on appearance, so don’t put HR in a sticky situation and leave off your picture.

Leave off your salary information

There is no need to add this information. Sometimes the online application will ask for it, and in that case, put your salary information. And if the application asks for your desired salary, make sure to enter a reasonable expected salary range.

Leave off the reason

why you left your last job. This should be discussed during an interview, not on a resume. Also, make sure when talking about the reasons why you left your previous employers that you speak highly of them and refrain from speaking negatively.

Leave off things like race, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, pregnancy, and marital status

on your resume. These are considered a “protected class” under the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which means employers cannot discriminate in the workplace, including hiring, firing, and promotions.

Leave off personal pronouns like “I” and “me”.

It is best practice to leave these off because it is understood that you are speaking about yourself.

Leave off an unprofessional email address.

The best type of email address is your first name and last name. If you have an email address like ‘’, it’s best to skip that one. It only takes a few minutes to get a new email address that will professionally represent you. And you might consider using a separate email address for the job-hunting journey. One that you can use for applications and career-related communications only.

Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions about what you should or should not include on a resume. The resume writers at NimoHR are here to help.

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