Recruitment pet peeves and how to avoid them from a recruiter’s perspective

With a reported one in four Brits looking to change their job, in what has been dubbed ‘The Great Resignation’, many of us will be looking for a new challenge this year. Whether this has been brought on by burnout from the pandemic or just natural next steps in moving roles, many will be updating their CVs and looking at job sites for their next career move.

Recent data from Adzuna has found that six in 10 British CVs contain common spelling mistakes, which could put off recruiters and HR teams – especially if ‘attention to detail’ is in a job criteria.  If you’ve been applying for jobs, or considering making a job move, it could be useful to take a step back and revaluate your approach to ensure that your CV isn’t holding you back from bagging your dream role.

In this blog, to help job searchers secure an interview and a new position, we share some recruitment pet peeves, common mistakes that are made and ways to avoid them.

Recruitment pet peeves and top tips

When searching and applying for new job roles it can be difficult to hear that your ways of approaching a new role may be putting recruiters and HR teams off hiring you.

However, it is important to understand your behaviour and adjust it accordingly to secure a new role.

With this in mind, below are common pet peeves, and advice on avoiding them, in the recruitment process:

  • Consider how you come across on social media – like it or lump it, social media can play a part in the job process. A recruiter or potential employer may attempt to search and look at your social media pages ahead of an interview. You want to ensure that you are giving the right impression from your profiles. Make them as private as possible or remove content that could impact your employability. Also consider, if you haven’t already, setting up a LinkedIn page. It is a public way to display your CV, experience, and achievements that employers may want to review ahead of an interview.
  • Grammatical errors on CVs and job applications – the recent Adzuna data above highlights the number of grammatical mistakes that are made on a CV and job application. It’s so important to remember that this is the first impression a potential employer will have from you, and you want to ensure it is the right impression. Employers want to see that you take pride in your work and pay attention to detail. To avoid any mistakes, double check your CV and application and ask a friend or family member to check as well.
  • Forgetting to include a cover letter – providing a cover letter is an opportunity for you to speak directly to the potential employer and highlight why you’d be perfect for the job and your key skills and experiences. It’s an opportunity to stand out from the crowd. BUT make it specific for the role you are applying for otherwise you might as well not have bothered – see below.
  • Sending out a generic or incomplete application – when applying for multiple roles, it may seem easier to take a scattergun approach to the application process, however, you are doing yourself a disservice. By taking the time to submit individual applications or cover letters, it will give you the opportunity to explain why you would be right for the role and it will capture an employer’s attention. It’s also crucial to submit a complete application, ignoring or not fully replying to questions will put off potential employers.
  • Sharing a headshot with your application – unless it has been requested as part of the application, don’t share a headshot of yourself. Including a photo in your CV or application could result in discrimination or bias based on race, age, gender or other factors. Don’t give a potential employer any reason to ignore your skills and experience by focusing on your appearance.
  • Hiding or avoiding salary expectations – when going through the recruitment process it is important for both parties to express their current salary and future salary expectations – it allows for transparency and helps both the employer and potential employee understand how a recruit will work with their budget available. Be upfront about your expectations and ask what the salary available is.

For additional support and information on recruitment for your organisation, seek an independent HR advisor for guidance and support.