5 Things NOT to Put on a CV

Remove These Elements from Your CV Immediately!

Recruiter called?

Need to edit your CV and send it off quickly?

These five CV features are known to make recruiters cringe, so make sure to delete them before you hit submit!

5 Things Not to Put on Your CV

1) Photo

“Should I put a photo on my CV?” In the United Kingdom, the answer is no.

By law, companies need to prove that their hiring processes are free of discrimination.

By including a photo on your CV, you’re opening up the company to proving that there was no discrimination in the areas covered by the Equality Act including race and age. Most companies don’t want to deal with the potential liability.

The only instance in which you might include a photo is if you are applying for roles where your physical appearance is a part of the hiring criteria (such as acting or modelling, for example).

2) “I,” “Me,” and “We”

Never include the words “I,” “Me,” or “We” on your CV.

Although your CV is a personal marketing document, it should always be written in the third person.

Third-person writing makes you sound more professional and generally takes up less space, allowing you to fit more valuable information onto the page.

3) Fancy formatting and graphics

Keep your CV formatting classy and conservative.

Many online CV builders that promise to deliver sleek, modern CVs end up creating documents that aren’t taken very seriously by recruiters.

These graphic CVs often include bold colours, multiple columns, creative fonts and symbols that allow you to rate your skills on a 1-5 scale.

While they may look cool, they can put you at a disadvantage for two reasons:

1) They make look like you’re trying too hard

2) Applicant tracking systems can have a hard time pulling information from them

Let your skills and experience speak for themselves and stick to a traditional CV format.

Recruiters are hiring you based on your ability to do the job – not on your ability to put together an Instagramable CV!

4) Objective

When you submit your CV for a given position, your objective is to land an interview for that role, right?

We’ll assume so.

Including an objective on your CV does not add any value, and recruiters no longer expect to see them.

We recommend saving the space and using it to add additional information about your skills and experience.

5) References

You do not need to include references on your CV or say that “references are available upon request.”

Recruiters generally ask for references later in the hiring process, and they assume you will have a few to provide when they are requested.

Our team can help you craft a compelling CV, cover letter and LinkedIn profile! Scroll down to see how we can help.

Wondering how your CV stacks up? Submit it here for a free no-obligation review. We'll let you know what we think and how we can help, if needed.

About the Author

Matt Glodz

Matt Glodz is the Founder and Managing Partner of CV Pilots and a Certified Professional Resume Writer.

Based in London, he currently works with applicants ranging from CEOs to recent graduates and has been writing CVs for over eight years. After studying business communication at Cornell University, Matt worked for leading global companies, where he observed what drove the decision making of recruiters and hiring managers first-hand, noting that qualified candidates were frequently denied interview opportunities due to poorly written documents.

At CV Pilots, Matt combines his solid business and writing background to craft CVs that give his clients the best chance of landing interviews. He has lived in the UK, US and Italy.

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