There is one mistake that jobseekers can make that can ruin everything. What makes the infraction so awful is how simply it can be avoided. The biggest mistake that you can make on your resume is submitting it with spelling errors. It’s worse than not including the basics or submitting a resume that’s hard to read…

A resume with spelling errors makes hiring managers upset (or at least that’s how I always felt when I noticed them).

Here’s a list of things that go through the heads of hiring managers when they notice that your resume has spelling mistakes:

1. You’re careless – Who else makes spelling errors, not checks them and even submits them to employers…. Careless people! Even if you’re not a real life careless person, submitted a resume with even one spelling mistake makes you look like you couldn’t care less about the job you’ve applied to or anything else.

2. You’re incompetent – Harsh, I know but, if an employer gets past the thought that you’re careless and thinks perhaps it was just a small mistake, they will probably still think that you’re incompetent. Spelling is very important. Almost all jobs require that you communicate and most communication these days is conducted over email. If your resume presents the image that you can’t spell, you may be deemed incapable of doing the job you’ve applied to.

3. You’re unmotivated – Clicking the spell check button in Word has to be one of the easiest things to do! Failing to do so and proofreading your resume makes employers think that you don’t really want a job. When a candidate fails to do something so simple, employers assume that they are not really searching for a job because they want one. They assume that your mom is making you or it’s a requirement of state unemployment (actual things I’ve heard employers say). Submitting your resume for a job with spelling errors is a signal that you don’t care. A person that truly wants to work and is motivated to do so, takes extra steps to insure what their submitting to the company makes sense and has had effort put into it. Would you want your future boss thinking you’re unmotivated for the work you want them to hire you for?

4. You’ll ruin their company – This is a bit dramatic, but some hiring managers are very dramatic. Avoid the drama. Conduct a spell check and have someone else look over your resume, specifically looking for spelling mistakes. You definitely don’t want to send the impression that you’re out to ruin anyone’s company.

When you’re job hunting, the last thing you want to be disqualified for is spelling mistakes. If you’d like a more expanded list of items that should and shouldn’t be in your resume, check out my Resume Audit Checklist. It’ll give you a an overview of what your resume needs and doesn’t need to attract the attention of employers.

If you review your resume after reading this post, please come back and let me know if you had any spelling errors on your resume. I’d love to know what you found.

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