[LIGHTER SIDE] Ditch the clichés: Hiring managers reveal CV turn-offs

by Tammy Buckley19 Mar 2014
If you’ve come across a resume from a candidate describing themselves as ‘best of breed’, a ‘go-getter’, who can ‘think outside the box’ and is a ‘go-to person’ and rolled your eyes you’re not alone.

A new survey by CareerBuilder has revealed that when it comes to obfuscating language in CVs, these over-used terms are the top pet hates of hiring managers.  

The worst résumé terms
1. Best of breed: 38%
2. Go-getter: 27%
3. Think outside of the box: 26%
4. Synergy: 22%
5. Go-to person: 22%
6. Thought leadership, Value add, Results-driven 16%
7. Team player: 15%
8. Bottom-line: 14%
9. Hard worker: 13%
10. Strategic thinker: 12%

The best résumé terms
1. Achieved: 52%
2. Improved: 48%
3. Trained/Mentored: 47%
4. Managed: 44%
5. Created: 43%
6. Resolved: 40%
7. Volunteered: 35%
8. Influenced: 29%
9. Increased/Decreased: 28%
10. Ideas: 27%

Additionally the survey found one in six hiring managers spend, on average, 30 seconds reviewing résumés, while 68% spend less than two minutes.

Do you agree with the list? What words would you like to see removed from candidates resumes? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.


  • by Gordon 19/03/2014 3:40:09 PM

    You have to ask the question if, if hiring managers are only spending 30 seconds to 2 minutes on a resume, why do we place so much emphasis on them as a recruitment tool. How many valuable people have been lost to an organisation because hiring managers don't put the effort into reading a resume?

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