In crafting their resume, many job seekers struggle to determine what exactly they should include, and what should be left off. Resume trends have shifted over the years, so what may have been acceptable 10 years or even 5 years ago, may not be current by today’s standards. Submitting an outdated resume is one way that job seekers risk getting passed over.

While people may have heard that certain elements – such as objectives – should be cut, they may not understand why they shouldn’t include them anymore. Here is a closer look at some things that should not be added to your resume and basic rationale behind these recommendations:

1. Objectives

An objective states what type of job you want and want you want to accomplish. When applying for a job, clearly your objective is to land the position. If you weren’t interested or able to meet the qualifications they outlined, why would you be applying? A stronger way to introduce yourself is through a summary of qualifications and core competencies. This shows employers what you are capable of, your strengths, and how you align with what they are looking for in a candidate.

2. Images

This can include both headshots and clipart. Neither is appropriate for a professional resume. Although discrimination based on age, gender, race, nationality, etc. is illegal, including your picture could leave room for bias even if completely unintentional. Also, unless you are an actor or model, what you look like probably has little impact on your job. Clipart and other images can detract from the content, make your resume appear less formal and do not demonstrate anything about your ability to do the job.

3. References

Listing out references, or even adding “references available upon request” wastes valuable space on your resume. If an employer is interested in hiring you and wants to contact your references, they will ask you for this information and it is expected that you will provide it. It is fine to keep a current list of references on hand, but only provide it if the employer asks.

4. Salary

The economy is always changing and you don’t want your salary history – or demands – to cause your resume to be passed over. Oftentimes salary is negotiable and is something that can be discussed later once you have made it to the interview process. If an employer asks for a salary history, consider creating a separate document that outlines this information. You want the focus of your resume to be on your accomplishments – not how much you were making.

5. Hobbies

Playing sports, fishing, sewing, or gardening are all great hobbies to have. However, they don’t have a place on your resume unless they are directly related to the job you are applying for. Everyone has activities they enjoy doing in their spare time – but this does not show employers anything about your job performance or what you are capable of in the workplace. If they ask about your hobbies in an interview you can certainly mention a few, but keep your resume career-oriented.

Fine-tuning your resume to remove these non-essential elements can help you to create a stronger, more polished first impression. Let the professionals at Chic Resumes help you to update and revamp your resume to more effectively support your job search. We stay abreast of the latest trends and developments to keep your resume current with accepted standards.