Posted Online: Oct. 06, 2011, 11:34 am

Resumé Pointers - Stuff You Can Use

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Dawn Klingensmith © CTW Features

If you’ve updated the content of your resumé but not the format, it’s possible you may be starting and ending the document on a weak note. Unfurling an objective on top and adding the line “References available on request” at the bottom of the document comes across as outdated and even wasteful.

An objective “takes up valuable real estate that could be better used to showcase accomplishments,” says Alison Green, founder of the career blog Ask a Manager.

Objectives seldom help and can often hurt if they aren’t perfectly tailored to a position, she adds.

By definition, an objective is about what the candidate wants, which the hiring manager doesn’t care about in the screening stage when your resumé is first considered.

“As for what goes in its place, the current trend is to lead off the resumé with a skills summary or highlights section which quickly captures who you are as a candidate in a couple of sentences or bullet points,” says Green, of Washington, D.C.

Another line can be trimmed from the bottom of most resumés. “References available on request” is stating the obvious, says Green: “It takes up an entire line and feels dated.”