Career Strategist lists 10 things that no longer belong in a CV in 2021, plus, ways to spot fraudulent recruiters

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Illustration. Photographed by blackCAT
Illustration. Photographed by blackCAT
  • To say job hunting isn't an actual job would be us undermining the process.
  • Anyone will tell you how stressful it is to find a job, and that alone doesn't even involve the amount of money spent to contact recruiters, print CVs and documents and go to interviews.
  • With that said, the job-hunting industry is filled with scams; therefore, as individuals, we need to find better ways to protect ourselves, including limiting the information we share on our CVs.

Many have fallen for emails that said they have an interview at a location that doesn't belong to the company or even exist. Or better yet, emails that say you have to bring a certain amount of money to the interview.

Unfortunately, desperation does lead to job seekers falling victim to these job scams.

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Before we tackle things you don't need in a CV in 2021, Unilever shares six warning signs of recruitment fraud:

- Do not respond to unsolicited offers from people you are unfamiliar with.

- Do not disclose personal or financial details to anyone you do not know.

- Check any documents for poor grammar and spelling; it is often a warning sign of fraud.

- Beware of employers or agents using a free email address such as @Yahoo, @Hotmail or @gmail.

- Hover over email addresses to check the sender's details.

- If you are asked for payment of any kind by a recruiter, contact your local police department as this is very likely to be fraud.

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Zola Maphila, a career strategist who goes by The Real CV Guru, took to Twitter to share a thread of things you should remove from your CV in 2021:

Career Objective

When you start your CV off with a career objective, it shifts the focus away from what you can do, why they should hire you or what problem you can solve. Do not make the intro about what you want, but rather start off with a summary that demonstrates the value you can add and what makes you the best candidate for the role you're applying for.

Personal Information

This includes your home address, ID number, number of dependents, health information, date of birth, marital status etc.


Unless a huge part of you getting the job is dependent on your looks, then leave it off. Recruiters, like everyone else, have inherent biases, and you don't want to be in a position where the focus is drawn on your appearance rather than your actual skills, experience etc.

Additional Documents

Do not combine any documents such as your certificates and copy of your ID to your CV. Your CV should be fine on its own. If the job application requests the documents be sent, then attach them as separate files.

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These are words that, as a result of being over-used, have now lost their impact. Words or phrases such as "hard-working," "motivated," "punctual", "diligent." Your CV is designed to sell you as an individual and highlight why you're a great fit for the role. It will be hard to achieve this when you've used vague phrases that show no real value or expertise.


Graphics such as logos, charts and tables; might be great for a human to look at, but for the robot (ATS) that needs to scan your CV when you've applied online initially. These kind of graphics are unreadable to the ATS (depending on which ATS it is).

Unnecessary fluff

Your CV does not need a cover page, and it doesn't need the title, "Curriculum Vitae of…" Recruiters spend less than 6 seconds reviewing each CV. You've got 6 seconds to show them that it's worth their time to continue reading. Get to the point!

Long paragraphs

These will make your CV hard to read. Your intro summary should be 2-3 sentences max. Your responsibilities should always be in bullet point form, and do not copy all that text from your cover letter and include it on your CV.

Social media link

Unless it's a link to your LinkedIn profile, other social media channels you include should be done to showcase your skills and professional abilities that align with the role you're applying for.


This is a preference more than anything, so to each to her own. However, I would recommend not including these if you've gathered quite a number of references over a long career span. Some references might be great to speak on your sales skills specifically, whilst others can speak directly to your skills as a supervisor. You can always provide references when asked to do so.

Sources: UnileverTwitter

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