Advice for Caregivers

10 Things NOT to do on a Nanny Resume

by Martha Scully

Do you wonder why the families aren't responding to your application? It could be because they're overwhelmed with responses and you didn't make the cut. Or perhaps you got completely overlooked because your resume is no good. Here is some advice from us on what to avoid:

Use an appropriate email address

An email address like sexynanny69@gmail.com or lovejustinbieber.xoxo16@yahoo.com is likely going to land you in the recycling bin. There are tons or free email address providers available, like www.hotmail.com , www.gmail.com , and www.yahoo.ca . Take the time to set up a more professional email address, using your first and last name.

Grammar and spelling errors

These types of mistakes make it seem like you didn't put enough effort into your application. Ask more than one person to review your resume to find those small errors that may cost you a job.

Putting only the years, not months, of previous jobs

By omitting the time frame you worked at your previous jobs and listing only the years makes it seem to employers that you are trying to hide something. List the months and years of your work experience, and be prepared to explain short-term employment or large gaps in your work history.

The reason you left your last job

We see this occasionally on resumes, where a jobseeker will list the reason why they left the job - i.e. "The family couldn't afford it any more". This is not necessary information to provide, so don't include it on your resume. If you are asked, that is when you can give the short answer.

No description of experience

Don't assume that the person reading your resume knows that your duties and responsibilities were at your previous jobs. List the main functions of your role for each job, giving the reader an overview of your role.

No cover letter or introduction

Take a few minutes to write a personal letter of introduction to your potential employer, and if it's asked for, send it! Most times if you don't have anything accompanying your resume when you apply for a job, you won't even be considered. You can use this to highlight some key areas where you think you are the best for the job - i.e. "I took piano lessons for 3 years as a child, so I can help Susie with her practicing."

Stating your education back to elementary school

The only education you need to include is the highest grade you reached, and whether or not you graduated, with the year, and any post-secondary training you have. You can use this to highlight your accomplishments if they are relevant to the job, but you don't need to list all of your education; everyone assumes that you finished elementary school.

No phone number

Even though CanadianNanny.ca is an online job board and most correspondence is done by email, most families will want to call you for a phone interview or to schedule an in-person interview, so provide your phone number.

Bragging about yourself

Your cover letter and resume are tools to show the potential employer your skills, experience, and qualifications, not to brag about your achievements. Try to keep the accomplishments listed related to the job you're applying for.

Setting the time you're available to be reached

Stating that you're only available to be reached between 8am and 3pm is unusual. Those hiring someone usually have limited time, so restricting when they can contact you is a no-no. Provide them with a number where they can leave you a message if you're not available, and then call them back when you are available.

We know that you want to find a job, and you don't have all the time in the world to wait to be hired. Take some time to set yourself up professionally, and you can reduce how long it takes to find a job.

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About the Author
Martha Scully
Martha is the founder of CanadianNanny.ca. Martha has been featured as a Child Care Expert in hundreds of publications across Canada including The Globe and Mail, CBC, Today's Parent and The National Post, She lives in British Columbia with her husband and two daughters.