Talent At Work: Recruitment and Career Blog

Top 5 Scariest Things We’ve Seen Looking for the Perfect Candidate

Posted on October 31st, by Goldbeck Recruiting in Just For Fun. Comments Off on Top 5 Scariest Things We’ve Seen Looking for the Perfect Candidate


Photo Credit: Johnny Martin ecdl (Own work)

Over the past few years, our recruiters here at Goldbeck Recruiting have seen thousands of resumes. Sometimes there are resumes that catch them by surprise. Today in the spirit of Halloween, we list the top 5 scariest things our recruiters have seen in their search for the perfect candidate:

1. Black and White Mugshot

When I asked Henry to tell me about his experiences, his face turned white in fear as he recollected this one resume he received on a cold winter morning. The cover page of the resume happened to have the candidates passport sized photo in black and white – which was eerily similar to a Bella Lugosi’s mugshot and the caption below stating “Not Actual Size”. Henry said ” That could stir nightmares, some 6 foot tall, deathly white, candidate with a little tiny head, chasing me around my desk.” To be honest, I’d be a little scared too.

2. The Serious Case of Acronyms

Kevin- our senior recruiter for Engineering and Technical placements mentions how certain candidates feel the need to add all sorts of technical acronyms which for some reason makes him hungry since it reminds him of alphabet soups. So there’s a pro tip for all you technical candidates out there, avoid acronyms as much as you can and perhaps explains them too. This makes it easier for the recruiter to scan through your resume to pick out skills that make you shine above the rest.

3. Skeletons in my Closet

Alessia states how in her past experiences she’s seen few resumes that have notes that say – “Please do not misinterpret the fact that I changed 14 jobs. I have never resigned from a job.”  – this clearly raises a red flag and makes the recruiter wonder why. Well, as curious as Alessia is, she did some digging only to find out the candidate was in fact unreliable.  Alessia then remembered another candidate who mentioned that he had NO possible references despite having worked in an professional environment for the past 5 years. This rose the question : ” Do you have any skeletons in the closet?” – I suppose that would have been perfect for Halloween.

4. Ghost of Document Formatting.

Karen is one of our most experienced and seasoned recruiters here at Goldbeck – she has seen quite a few scary resumes and is startled at the sight of one till date. She believes that building a visually appealing resume isn’t hard in today’s technological world. The use of subtle colors, text formatting like bold, italics helps guide the eye to the more important information. Use them ! Also remember to focus on mentioning your real skills and achievements over the fluffy things about your personality and what you do in your spare time.

5. The Spooky Perfectionist.

Ria is one of our other seasoned recruiters, she has often come across candidates who apply to every job in every industry and claim to be the perfect match.  Ria and all our other recruiters won’t even touch a candidate like this and move past them. Remember, use your skills to your advantage and it is only then you will achieve what you seek.

BONUS – The Headless Horseman.

I think this is a story that is fitting and too good to not share, so here it goes. Henry once received a Voice Mail from a candidate in Texas where the gentleman exclaimed his disappointment in Henry because he wasn’t able to secure a job for the gentleman. Soon this disappointment turned into anger and the candidate vowed to show up with a shotgun and blow Henry’s head off. Now we’re all glad this never happened although it would’ve made for the perfect Halloween costume of the Headless Horseman.

Photo Credit:By Johnny Martin ecdl (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

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