You have almost answered you own question here. If you need to ask “ Why does my CV keep getting rejected?” it is because your CV is not working for you and needs looking at.
Your CV does not show that you are not among the best choices from those which are currently presented for consideration.
We could speculate that it is because you are female in a largely patriarchal society. We could speculate that your lack of past experience in the field raises skepticism regarding your ability to perform. We could speculate that you changed jobs frequently indicating an inability to adequately conform to workplace culture. We could even speculate that the job market provides plentiful candidates for the type of position you are applying for, making your application get lost in the flurry – even if they randomly chose ten passable candidates from a stack of 20 – you could easily have been in those passed over each time purely out of chance.
- You’ve applied for a job you’re not suitable for (don’t meet the essential criteria) OR
- It is outright terrible (had one ‘CV’ for a role that had 20 words TOTAL on it!) OR
- Formatting issues or in a file type the receiver won’t open OR
- Your resume is very generic in a competitive market. It needs to be tailored to the role and organisation if known. OR
- You didn’t follow instructions like file type, length etc.
What am I doing wrong or what is the mistake that I do in my CV that I always get rejected on job proposals as a graphic designer?
So, keeping in mind that I’m sharing some tough love that should really help, here it goes…
- Your “about me” is way too long. No one cares about your life story (at this stage). You’re telling a bot or a recruiter interesting facts that should make them think you are interesting FOR THE ROLE. You’re not here to make friends!
- no one cares how old you are, and in some countries/states it’s illegal to ask (so you’re probably freaking some people out)
- your target length should be 25% of what it currently is. just get to the point
- “passion for a fresh and original design” – no shit, you’re a designer. what designer wakes up in the morning and says, “I can’t wait to rip off some work from 5 years ago!” Which leads me to…
- Cut all fluff and BS. Don’t waste words saying things that are obvious, and get to the point. This is a CV, NOT a conversation. You should have buzz words, but don’t write anything that’s going to make my eyes roll (as per point 1c)
- Your skills section is BS. what does 95 mean? do you know 95% of everything there is to know about Photoshop (I seriously doubt that). Are you saying you’re in the 95th percentile of Photoshop users (at 26 I also doubt that)? Every single thing on your CV needs to be meaningful and have an impact. If it’s ambiguous or prone to misinterpretation, rewrite it or cut it.
- specifically on skills, consider just listing them out and embedding links to a portfolio page that specifically demonstrates your capability in that skill. This is super easy for a designer to do, and in taking this approach you may find better skills to list
- similar feedback on your languages. Just list them as either fluent/partial and literate/not. stop trying to make everything.
- “Why hire me” is going to be read as “I’m super desperate, please take a chance on me.” Pro tip: recruiters and bots don’t take chances. If you don’t pan out, you make them look bad (for bots, it’s making the tool look bad). You have some interesting stuff in this section – move it around and make it a better callout (maybe folding it in to a new skills section)
- this format is terrible for bots. consider a simple CV for online applications and a refined version of this for sending via email. Bots can’t navigate complex layouts or form structures, you are increasing the chances that your CV shows up in recruiting tools as broken/gibberish.
- all your samples should link out to works to explore. these mini snippets don’t do your design or creative work any justice. give them some air to breath in their full glory (and just link from here – also works better for bots)
- I’m assuming you make copies and customize these for each role you apply to. If you are just sending one version to everyone you are doing it wrong. You’re missing out on opportunities to heavy-up on specific keywords that recruiters and bots are scanning for.
And remember: a recruiter (or bot) is not a designer. You may think two terms mean the same thing, but if the recruiter/bot wasn’t briefed with that term, they aren’t [usually] going to make the connections you expect them to. Today, the hiring managers rarely ever do the initial screening – so the first one to see your CV and decide if your future boss should even see it is going to be someone who isn’t a professional and doesn’t work in the field. That’s why customization is so important. You are writing to get in past the gatekeeper so you can talk to the decision-maker.
Another major reason your CV is being rejected is because applicant tracking systems, used by around 90% of hiring managers cannot process graphics, text boxes, shapes, headers. footers etc. so they can’t ‘see’ the keywords they are scanning for. This means your CV will be rejected before it even gets in front of a human being.
Because your CV is all about style, you have sacrificed detailed, relevant content in favour of design. Hiring managers need much more information about you to make a positive judgement.
Speaking of judgement, reading a CV is a subjective experience. The people reading it will have their own likes and dislikes so by using bold colour, you are risking offending someone’s personal taste.
When all is said and done, your CV is not about what you like personally and, as a designer, this is something you should understand when you are creating work to a brief.
The bottom line is to keep it simple and focus on substance not style. You can always send examples of your work along with your CV or direct hiring managers to your portfolio.
What are the top 10 reasons for CV rejection?
This won’t be 10 but in no particular order…
Messy disorganized CV
Lack of experience in the right skills
Typo errors and/or poor grammar
A photo of the applicant on the CV
Information that tells the race, religion,, age, of the applicant (or anything else it is illegal to ask like height and weight in certain states)