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How to write a CV or resume to avoid age discrimination

Updated on August 29, 2008

Hints and Tips for writing your CV/resume

It can be a depressing experience applying for jobs if you are a more mature worker. Sometimes it can feel as if nobody wants to employ you if you are over 30. You can feel sidelined and unwanted, and yet you have a wealth of experience and knowledge to offer a potential employer.

There are ways around this. Your resume should tell a potential employer about your ability to the job that needs filling. Stop and think. Is your age really relevant to this? I imagine you will say "no". Ok - why put clues about your age on your CV. Here are my 5 tips for avoiding age discrimination before you get to interview.

1) The most obvious. Don't put your date of birth on your CV. It isn't necessary. Your resume should start with a simple heading consisting of your name, address and contact details. That's all that is needed.

2) You probably have a loads of career details you feel you should tell the employer about. But if you have been employed for 40 years, giving the dates of your first job immediately tells the employer you are older. Better to stick to details of the last 10 - 20 years of work experience.

3) School and college dates. Are they necessary. With all your work experience is the employer even interested in which school you attended or what qualifications you gained at age 16? It would be much better to list any professional qualifications you have gained in the last 10 - 20 years.

4) Family details. Why do people put this on their resume? Another opportunity for discrimination. If you say you are a father of 2 and grandfather of one then that immediately gives an employer a clue that you are older and has no relevance at all to your ability to the job.

5) Hobbies. Another section that has no place on a resume. Unless you have a hobby relevant to your job leave them all off. Yes, you might be a member of your local over 50s debating club. And yes - it shows your brain is still fit and active - but it also tells the employer you are older.

How to avoid age discrimination when applying for a job
How to avoid age discrimination when applying for a job


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