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Employers biggest CV gripes revealed

The New College of Humanities has revealed employers biggest gripes with CVs with typos and grammatical errors leading the way

How long do you take on reading a potential candidates CV? New research from the New College of the Humanities has revealed that recruiters on average make their minds up in less than 60 seconds.

The findings came after researchers interviewed over 860 recruiters, with 20 per cent said they discard a CV before getting to the end, while on average they spend an average of just three minutes and 14 seconds looking over an application.

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The research also looked at the biggest employer gripes with a CV, with the biggest being typos and grammatical errors, followed by a too casual tone including using terms such as ‘you guys’ or signing off with ‘cheers’.

Other turn off’s including using jargon and clichéd quotes, such as using ‘perfectionism as a weakness, and having a CV over two pages long.

Top ten CV pet hates

  1. Typos and grammatical errors
  2. Overly casual tone
  3. Use of jargon and clichés
  4. A CV more than two pages in length
  5. Snazzy borders and backgrounds
  6. Writing in the third person
  7. Inclusion of clip art or emojis
  8. The use of cringeworthy quotes
  9. Unprofessional email address
  10. Unconventional font

The research also looked at recruiters’ most hated phrases and how many candidates use clichés with ‘working well independently’ being the most used phrase as 47 per cent claim to do so. A further 32 per cent say that they are a team player, while 24 per cent say they have ‘excellent written communication skills’.

Most over-used phrases

  1. Can work independently
  2. Hard worker
  3. Works well under pressure
  4. Good communicator
  5. Enthusiastic
  6. Team player
  7. Good listener
  8. Excellent written communication skills
  9. Proactive
  10. Problem solver

One in ten candidates have confessed to being creative with the truth about the length of employment at previous companies, and one in 20 have bent the truth about their previous positions, with a similar number lying about references.

Almost twice as many women (11 per cent) lie about their hobbies and interests compared to men (six per cent).

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