Laszlo Bock SVP People Operations at Google

The worst CV mistakes, according to Google’s HR chief

Google’s chief of HR, Laszlo Bock, says he has personally viewed more than 20,000 CVs in his career, so it’s fairly safe to assume he knows a thing or two about what makes a good, or bad, CV.

Bock, who heads People Operations at Google, recently shared with LinkedIn followers the most common mistakes he sees on CVs.

For the HR expert, typos are the number one red flag on a CV and one that keeps happening far too often. In fact, he mentions a 2013 CareerBuilder survey that found that as many as 58 per cent of CVs contain typos.

“People who tweak their CVs or résumé the most carefully can be especially vulnerable to this kind of error, because they often result from going back again and again to fine tune your résumé just one last time. And in doing so, a subject and verb suddenly don’t match up, or a period is left in the wrong place, or a set of dates gets knocked out of alignment,” says Bock.

Worst CV Mistakes

“Typos are deadly because employers interpret them as a lack of detail-orientation, as a failure to care about quality,” he adds.

According to Bock, lengthy CVs should also be on an HR manager’s rejection list. The rule of thumb, he says, is one page per 10 years of work experience. Formatting is also a big issue, as he says many CVs aren’t clean or even legible enough.

Bock has also come across CVs revealing confidential company information which, in his opinion, should also mean instant rejection. Lastly, he says HR managers should turn down any CVs with blatant lies. In the age of the internet, any lies can easily be uncovered.

In the opinion of Google’s head of HR, these are the things that can send a CV straight to the recycling bin.

Original article: The worst CV mistakes, according to Google’s HR chief.

Your CV Success

Your CV, Your Responsibility, Your Success

Keeping your CV up to date is something that people tend to think of then forget or procrastinate over before forgetting. Then it happens, you spot the “dream job” or feel/know that you cannot continue in your current role. You blow the dust of the CV, and add a quick update, then possibly show it to a significant other for a much valued (worthless in most cases†) opinion. You send it through to the Recruiter and hear nothing.


Because you did not take responsibility for the CV, and your arrogance, ignorance or naivety (delete as required) has just cost you a great or golden career opportunity. Most people can learn from this mistake if they stop denying they made the error, and are prepared to take responsibility to correct what they did wrong.

CV update, easier said than done?

Not necessarily so; but it will depend on a number of factors including but not limited to:
[list style=”list2″ color=”green”]

  • How old is the CV?
  • Does it look like a professional CV that represents a professional person at their pinnacle?
  • Is it in a tired or out of date format?
  • If it landed on your desk would you interview you?


Desire: Effort in, reward back.

Everything regarding a CV is linked to desire. If you want success (for want, read desire) then you will be driven to make the improvements required for your application to be shortlisted. The only question now is who do you trust, that is objective and authoritative, to give your document a full appraisal?

If you would like us to help you then visit our home page and choose a suitable option.

(†« I used this symbol in the first paragraph and for good reason; your significant other (person of trust) could be a spouse or friend, but unless they have relevant experience, all they can offer is limited personal opinion.)

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