As a translator, you must be aware of all the hard work that goes into acquiring the skill of translation, but, expertise alone will not land you a job; you also need to create an effective resume to demonstrate your talent to a potential employer.
You might think you know what to include in a successful translation CV, but it’s just as important to know what to avoid.
To write a resume that can help you land your dream job, whether it’s Spanish to English IT translation or English to French legal translation, you should highlight all the right things while meanwhile dodging common mistakes that will ensure employees don’t take a second look.
In this article, we have compiled 5 mistakes to steer clear of in your translation resume:
1. Exaggeration on your resume
Some people tend to exaggerate their professional status or level of seniority in their field of work. Make sure that you are not one of those people.
It may sound tempting to bend the truth just a little to trick the recruiters into shortlisting your resume, for instance, mentioning a title that you do not hold to land a senior position or in hopes of leveraging a higher pay. But it is not worth the trouble because, if caught, which you most probably will be, it could jeopardize your career.
Even if you get hired, the lie will sooner or later catch up to you as your lack of expertise will show. For instance, a senior translator will be assigned a higher level of tasks as compared to that of a junior translator. Now, if you exaggerate and portray yourself as a senior without the required expertise, you would not be able to execute the assigned task and it can make the organization recognize you as an incompetent employee. This is particularly true if you lie about having certain skills or knowledge. You can’t fake being able to use CAT tools or having expertise in technical vocabulary.
Deception is never wise when trying to convince recruiters of your eligibility for the targeted post. It can only present you in a bad light. So, always be accurate with your profile title and your professional status to avoid unnecessary hurdles in your career as a translator.
As is wisely said ‘slow and steady wins the race’, so take the time to invest in your career as a translator and reach a higher position on merit.
2. Writing lengthy paragraphs
Another important thing that you need to avoid in your translator resume at all times is writing lengthy paragraphs. The moment you start forming your resume outline, keep in mind that your translator resume is your introduction to recruiters and you need to make a good first impression.
Well, first off recruiters do not have the time to read through your resume in detail. With the time window of 6 seconds to spend on a resume, you need to make it easy for them to scan through your resume.
By writing bulky paragraphs you can end up sounding vague and losing the readers’ interest. Make it easier to read by using bullet points to frame one-liners and highlight the most significant parts of your career in bold.
Proofreading & Follow-up Management
- Compiled and proofread 20+ translated pages before publishing it on the official website
- Ensured accurate translation by conducting follow up with team members and clients
Also, note the use of power verbs at the beginning of each point. This helps you create impactful statements.
3. Providing unnecessary details
One thing you don’t want to do is skip going through the hiring guidelines of the organization where you are applying for a job. Every company has a set of rules when it comes to hiring potential applicants and you need to get informed and stick to them.
For instance, in the US it is prohibited for an applicant to provide details of one’s religion, gender, nationality, etc. to avoid biased hiring. On the other end, the Middle-east may even ask you to provide details of your passport along with your birth date, nationality, etc.
If you are not aware of these guidelines, play it safe by only providing your contact details like your personal information to the recruiters. Mention your number for the recruiters to get in touch with you for any likely shortlist or even possible interviews over the phone. Further, include the email address that you use in a professional capacity.
However, you shouldn’t have numbers in your email address as such email addresses are often flagged as spam. Most impersonators copy legit email IDs and add numbers to them so an email ID with numbers is not a good idea for a translator.
Example: If your email address is firstname.lastname@example.org then it may be considered spam.
So, avoid giving out an email address with a number in it.
You can also mention your current location of residence but refrain from providing any other personal details in your translator resume unless explicitly asked.
4. Skipping the details of your credentials
When you apply for a job, you need to validate your credibility with some means of proof and you should not skip providing the details of any required or relevant credentials that can help boost your value as a suitable translator. You cannot expect the recruiters to believe you are a qualified French translator without any proof. If you’ve got credentials, flaunt them.
Mention the basic details of the institution where you graduated or got certifications to enhance your expertise as a translator. As a translator, you are usually required to have a bachelor’s degree. Many translators also get certified to hone their skills or simply get ahead in the race. Mention these details in your resume.
Providing any awards or recognition relevant to your profession as a translator can also make the recruiters recognize you as an applicant with potential. Be sure to include your experience and expertise in your specialized field.
5. Providing an ineffective overview of your translator resume
One common mistake that most people make while creating their translator resume is sidelining the importance of the overview.
As mentioned earlier, recruiters do not have the luxury of time to go through every resume thoroughly so composing an effective resume summary is a good chance to encourage the reader to look at your CV in more detail.
Compose your resume summary at the end by scanning through your resume and picking out only the most significant highlights of your career, relevant to the position you are applying for.
You should avoid unnecessary repetition of less effective points in the summary because the goal here is to give the recruiter an insight into your resume and not to overload your resume summary with extensive details.
Keep it simple and specific, just enough to highlight your professional expertise and skills.
Let’s look back at the key takeaways that will help you avoid mistakes in your translator resume:
- Never lie or exaggerate facts in your resume.
- Avoid writing lengthy paragraphs in your resume.
- Do not give out any unnecessary details.
- Do not skip the details of your education and certifications.
- Always compose an effective summary of your resume in the end.