A head recruiter at Amazon says the biggest mistake people make on their résumés comes down to their job title

Strelka/FlickrAvoid this mistake.
  • Your résumé is a recruiter’s first impression of you during the job search.
  • Celeste Joy Diaz, a recruiting manager at Amazon, said not explaining your job accomplishments clearly is one key way to alienate recruiters from the outset.
  • Instead, use hard numbers to demonstrate how you succeeded in previous roles.

Celeste Joy Diaz, the recruiting manager for university programs at Amazon, said her team doesn’t like to talk about “red flags.”

But there is one big thing that can irk recruiters like Diaz during the application process: namedropping your place of employment, without explaining what you did there.

“Titles are great, but we want to understand what was the project you owned, what was the scope of a project, and what did you accomplish,” Diaz told Business Insider.

Simply stating in your résumé that you worked at Google, The New York Times, or some other name-brand company is impressive, but it doesn’t really communicate what you did with that opportunity.

That doesn’t just apply to recruiters at Amazon, either. Career experts across the board have named lack of explanation as one of the biggest mistakes that applicants make in their résumés.

“Lack of measurements and results in the file is my biggest résumé pet peeve,”executive résumé writer and career strategistAdrienne Tom previously told Business Insider. “Without any measurements of success, the file is lacking proof of skill.”

WhiteboardWOCinTech Chat/FlickrBe specific, and include plenty of data.

So, expand upon what you did in that job that brought value – whether that’s an amount of revenue you produced, projects you led, or how you excelled in your monthly goals. Including the numbers that back up your success is key, Tina Nicolai, executive career coach and founder of Résumé Writers’ Ink, previously told Business Insider.

Be as specific as possible. Write, “Helped grow revenue by 500% to $US1 million in 12 month period by doing X” instead of “Helped grow revenue,” Nicolai said.

“Employers need numbers to be able to fully evaluate the scope of your bandwidth,” Nicolai said. “No position is exempt from measuring results. And metrics help employers determine if a person is capable of leading a team, managing clients, or growing the business.”

This extends to job interviews as well, Diaz said. She recommended discussing your previous roles with other people, so you can practice giving concrete examples of your achievements and explaining what your job meant beyond the title and the company.

“People might not take the time to think about the impact of the work they have done,” Diaz said. “I want to understand scope of impact more than just job titles.”

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