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7 Skills to Leave Off Your Resume

7 Skills to Leave Off Your Resume

When building up your CV, you should stick to the “quality over quantity” principle. HRs or recruiters spend approximately seven seconds understanding whether a candidate is a good match for the company. It might sound odd, but still, it’s reality. That’s why you do have to make your resume laconic but informative at the same time. Of course, you might possess numerous skills beyond your professional activity but are they welcome? There are plenty of other places to brag about your talents but in your resume, pick only those skills which can make you shine bright like a diamond among the rest of the applicants.

In this article, we’ve prepared seven examples of items that should be ruled out from your CV so that it doesn’t end up in a pile called “useless”.

A Language You Only Studied in High School

According to Aurora Meneghello, career coach, adding a foreign language to your resume is pointless unless your level allows you to use it freely. Having an elementary level acquired 10 years ago in high school will hardly help you hold specific conversations with native speakers, solve their problems, and deal with documentation quickly. On the flip side, you’re highly likely to get spun out as well, trying to learn lots of new things, integrate into all the processes, and handle the language you’re not very good at.

Another risky scenario will be if the interviewer decides to check your knowledge. In case you put the level which doesn’t live up to the reality, they will be a witness to your fiasco in a matter of minutes. It will reduce the perspective of you being invited to the next interview stage to zero immediately.

Basic Computer Skills

We don’t know if there are still companies that put Microsoft Word skills as a requirement for the vacancy. It’s not that they are not relevant, but just essential and anticipated. By including those in your CV, you might feel that you’ve tried to cram at least something. Not only does it irk recruiters, but it also makes you less appealing as a candidate.

However, some career coaches strongly recommend mentioning specific skills connected with such programs. Let’s say you’ve obtained detailed or advanced knowledge, like dealing with Advanced Formulae or Data Tables, Simulations & Solver in Excel. Not everyone can boast of these skills, so recruiters will notice them.

Social Media

Having no social media accounts seems like something from science fiction nowadays.

Some people are less active users, whereas others will bust their nuts to promote their personal brand online. However, no matter how popular you are on social media, there is a fundamental difference between managing your account for fun and doing it for a company’s business needs. We can start with data analysis, social marketing processes, creating branding messages, dealing with paid advertising campaigns, etc.

So, you have to keep in mind two things. Firstly, you should not mention that on your resume unless the position is connected with social media directly. Secondly, if you want to apply for Social Media Specialist positions, ensure your skills go far beyond making amazing pics and editing stories on Instagram.

Soft Skills

Soft skills are the core of any resume. However, you need to know how you should present them on your CV to look professional. We frequently tend to sin by putting skills on a list like “a multitasker, problem-solver, great communicator”, etc. Don’t you see any problem here? Well, what if you say, “I am a great communicator since I’ve managed to talk X into signing a contract with our company instead of our competitor that offered a better price to them”. Or, “Once we had a situation when a performer fell off the map on the same day we had an important event for 100 people. However, I brought in my connections, invited my old classmate to play, and our clients didn’t even know what had happened a few hours before”. Isn’t it more eloquent than stating that you’re stress-resilient?

So, what we want to convey is seeing is believing. Giving clear examples of your soft skills in action will work to your advantage and give you extra points over other candidates.

Exaggerations or Flat-Out Lies

We hope you realize that your task is not to mirror all the requirements from the vacancy description in your resume. The secret will be out very soon, should only the interview start. Furthermore, why don’t you need a job whose requirements don’t match your abilities? It’s highly likely to make you stressed out and make your life a nightmare. This is what Warriner also recommends doing – if a job gets you to do something you don’t feel like regularly doing, give up on this idea for your own sake.

Ideally, the match between a candidate and job requirements must comply with about 80-90%, which means there is no need to possess all the skills listed in the vacancy description.

Outdated Tech

Rapid technological progress is our reality, whether we like it or not. Those who deny keeping up with the latest tech trends automatically have poorer chances of finding a pleasant workplace.

As Riccio states, up-to-date companies strive to hire specialists who realize the importance of tech skills nowadays. People who don’t neglect to acquire relevant tech skills manifest themselves as flexible and fast learners. These soft skills are of high value among recruiters as they mean that a candidate is highly likely to have a shallow learning curve. So, when stating your tech talents, mention only those that are in demand at the present time.

Irrelevant or Joke Skills

You should never forget that your resume doesn’t equal your profile on Facebook. On Facebook, you are welcome to add any information about yourself, your extraordinary skills, and your unusual accomplishments to the envy of your enemies. However, your CV is a document that should contain only information regarding your qualifications and competencies. Stating that you have been rewarded as “top wood-carver 2019” will do in case you apply for the jobs to work with wood, not as a Business Analyst, for instance.

Of course, some recruiters may find it amusing and appreciate your sense of humor and versatility. However, you never know what kind of person is reading your CV.


As you can see, creating an effective and competitive resume requires following some principles. Among them, there are:

  • including only relevant information;
  • being honest and truthful;
  • avoiding controversial information which may create a wrong impression of you.

Follow them and enjoy the fantastic effect your resume will have on recruiters!

Date: 17 June 2022
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