What words scare human resources? It’s a question that many people have been pondering. As it turns out, there are quite a few things that can make HR cringe–and not just the ones you might expect! In this blog post, we’ll discuss some of those words and phrases so you know exactly what to avoid when trying to impress your company’s HR department.
1. Lack of experience
One of the first things that HR professionals look for is experience. So, if you don’t have much of it, don’t mention it! Listing your skills and experience is one thing, but explicitly stating that you’re inexperienced will only make you seem like a risk.
Instead, try to focus on your strengths and be positive. Let your resume and cover letter speak for themselves. If you’re called in for an interview, be prepared to discuss why you’re a good fit for the position, even if you don’t have a lot of experience.
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2. Lack of qualifications
Similar to experience, HR professionals want employees who are qualified for the job–especially if you’re applying for a position that requires specific skills. So again, try not to mention anything related to your lack of qualifications or education. You can still list what you do have under the relevant work history and previous positions.
While it’s okay to be humble, don’t make it seem like you’re not interested in the job or that you don’t think you can do it. Stay positive and be ready to talk about how your skills and qualifications align with what the company is looking for.
3. Salary requirements too high/too low
When you’re applying for a job, it’s best to keep your salary requirements flexible. That means not including them in your resume or cover letter–at least until an offer has been made.
HR professionals want employees who are willing to work within the company budget and won’t ask for too much or too little money during negotiations if they get an offer.
When discussing salary during an interview, be prepared with a range of acceptable numbers that are based on the average pay for your position in your area or industry–not too high and not too low! You can then discuss how much you think is fair based on what you know about the position before negotiating further if they make an offer.
4. Red flags in the resume or cover letter
There are many things that can make HR professionals cringe, but some of the most common red flags include spelling mistakes and typos. This is more important than it might seem–after all, you’re representing yourself here! A simple typo or error in your resume or cover letter will immediately raise a flag for HR if they see any.
5. Gaps in employment history
If you’ve been working for a while and then suddenly have a gap in your employment history, it may be because you were fired or laid off.
Even if this isn’t the case, make sure to explain any gaps during an interview–you don’t want HR professionals looking into why they might exist! It’s also important not to lie
6. Poor references
If you have references, make sure they’re good ones! HR professionals will definitely check in with your previous employers to see what kind of employee you were. So, if you had any problems or left on bad terms, it’s best not to list those people as references.
Instead, try to get recommendations from former bosses or colleagues who can speak positively about you. You may want to ask people before giving their name as a reference, too, to make sure they’ll say good things about you.
Avoid using friends or family members as references, too–HR won’t take them seriously and it’s best for your professional relationships not to list them anyway!
Words That Scare Human Resources
If you’re seeking a job, it’s important to be aware of some common HR red flags that might cause problems for your application. For example, listing the skills and experience you have on your resume or cover letter are one thing–but explicitly stating that you’re inexperienced will only make you seem like a risk. This is why it’s best not to include salary requirements either until an offer has been made. You can still list what qualifications or education you do have under the relevant work history and previous positions instead so there is no confusion about potential discrepancies in resume information.