Resume Tips When You Are Overqualified


After years of schooling and working so hard, it is not pleasant to be told that you are overqualified for a job. You are probably wondering what you can do differently to change the negative responses that potential employers are giving you. Well, your resume is probably a big factor in determining your qualification. When employers see an overqualified candidate, they are more likely to give the job to a less experienced person. Many employers fear that an overqualified employee will leave the job as soon as better opportunities come along. Therefore, it is more beneficial to them to hire someone who is at entry level. They also prefer not to hire overqualified employees because they may get bored easily from the job or feel superior to others who are less experienced. Employers want the overall well-being for their company’s team. Thus, you must demonstrate that you will be a positive and worthwhile addition to the team.

Your resume is what determines your chances of getting hired. Recreate your resume to highlight job experiences that relate to the job you are applying for. You do not need to list all of your work history because this will overwhelm the employer. Customize your resume for the particular position you are applying for. If you do not want to seem overqualified, you can say you were a “team leader” rather than a “company manager.” This will make you look less managerial and more of a team member. Also, you may tweak some components of the education section of your resume. Instead of saying that you have an advanced degree, you may list that you have had advanced training in certain topics. If having a PhD or Masters degree is unnecessary for the job you’re applying for, there is no reason to list it.

However, during a job interview you should tell the truth if they ask you about your education and perhaps some of your job history. It is better to be honest than come off as a liar. Another approach is to only list your relevant work experience on your resume. For a managerial job, don’t list any related experiences beyond 15 years. Limit it to 10 years for a technical job position. If you think your older job history is of any value to the current job you are applying for, you can list them under “other experiences” without revealing dates.

Another factor that may contribute to you coming off as overqualified is salary. If your resume lists that you worked in much higher positions than the one you are applying for now, potential employers might assume that you expect to get paid the same as your other jobs. This is why tailoring your resume is a smart tactic in not seeming overqualified. You can also let the employer know that you are flexible with the compensation depending on the job you are applying for. Remember that in order to not give the impression of being overqualified, you can customize and limit what is listed on your resume.

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