How To Avoid Age Discrimination On Your Resume

Having an issue with Age Discrimination on your resume? I’ve compiled a video focusing on quick tips to avoid it that you can take now.

Did you know that age discrimination has become such an issue that the Australian Government has introduced wage subsidies for employers that hire mature workers over 50 who are receiving a government benefit? Check your  eligibility here. This means that an employer can receive up to $10,000 in wage subsidies for hiring you.  A definite selling point for employers on tight budgets.

Watch the video below for my tips to avoid age discrimination on your resume – but if you are more of a reader (like me) – here’s a quick breakdown.

  1. Avoid anything that mentions the 80’s or earlier. That means strip the dates off your qualifications and avoid listing your jobs back that far. Ideally I don’t want to see anything from the 90’s either but so many of my clients want it included that sometimes I have to relent.
  2. Ditto for anything that shows your age – some really good examples are things like Typewriting or Shorthand courses. These are a dead give-away. The same as anything that mentions the word Secretary School. They don’t call it that anymore so don’t mention it.
  3. Please highlight your achievements and don’t be modest! This sounds odd (and also sad) but modesty is not something the younger generation are good at. So many of my mature clients want to tone down their resume because they are afraid of sounding conceited. Don’t be – you are competing with a younger generation that is VERY comfortable shouting how awesome they are from the rooftop. You have to be in it to win it and that means you need to compete to the very best of your ability. Show them how great you are!

That’s the main tips – I talk more about hiding your age on your resume to avoid  discrimination in the video so give it a watch and get in touch if you have any questions.

While you are at it, make sure you download my free ‘Resume Questionnaire’  at the end of the page. It will help you pinpoint those achievements you have been hiding.

Career Change? Stop Using SEEK.

Are you trying to change careers? The first thing you need to do is to stop relying on SEEK to find your next job. Here’s why:

When you use SEEK to find a new job (the internet job-search) you are competing with hundreds of other applicants. That’s fine if you are trying to get a job that you  have oodles of experience in – but if you are swapping careers that’s going to make you a tough sell against the other applicants.

My number one suggestion is that if you are trying to change jobs – you need to start networking or cold-calling. Of course you will still apply for advertised positions BUT don’t rely on it as the be all and end all of your job search. I have stacks more tips for you in the video above not relying on SEEK is my number one.

Let’s say you are a Bricklayer looking for a Security Guard role. You don’t have any security experience – but you do have your security qualification – licence. If you apply on SEEK at least half the applicants are going to have practical experience so you have a very very slim chance of reaching interview stage. Instead, you need to have contacted the employer before they go to the advertising stage.

So I would recommend in this situation that you post your resume with a cover letter to security companies in the area – stating that you are looking to get involved in the field and asking that they contact you should a position come up. This way you won’t be competing with other applicants who are probably more qualified than you.

I hope this helps you with your career change or transition. In the meantime, let me know if you would like help with your resume. You can view a sample here.

Quick Tips To Improve Your Resume

Want some quick tips to improve your resume today? Grab a copy of your current resume and lets get to work. I’ve attached a sample resume at the end of this video so you can see what I mean.

  1. Add a ‘Professional Profile’ section at the top of your resume. This is a quick summary of your experience and what you can bring to the table. You want the employer to be able to see exactly who you are and what you offer in one concise paragraph.
  2. Add a ‘Career Summary’ section which details the basics of your employment history – just dates, employer name and job title at this stage. We want this on the first page so the employer doesn’t have to wade through pages of content to get a feel for your experience.
  3. If you add interests – make sure they are interesting. I’ve written a whole post about this before but it’s super important that you don’t just write – gardening. Turn that into something interesting so it becomes ‘member of the floral society for 3 years and winner of Grand Champion Rose at the Toowoomba Show for (5) years’. Everyone write Gardening – do something different!
  4. Scrap your McDonalds job from when you were 15 (unless you are still a teenager). Remember that the trend is for a resume to get shorter – not longer. Don’t waste the space with irrelevant jobs that you haven’t done for 20 odd years. Stick to the past 4-5 unless they are super relevant to the job you are going for.
  5. Avoid Personal Details – your name and contact details are fine. Skip your relationship status and date of birth. Both open you up for discrimination based on the employers personal prejudices.  Don’t give them any ammunition to throw your resume in the bin.

For more tips, be sure to check out the video above and download a copy of a sample resume so you can see what it should look like below.


How Far Back Should Your Employment History Go?

How Far Back Should You Go With Your Resume?

It’s a question I get asked all the time. Nearly everybody that comes through my Resume Writing Service asks the same thing – How many of my jobs should I list on my resume?

You can watch the video above that explains it all or read on and I’ll give you a brief run-down.

Usually 4-5 of your most recent positions BUT there are exceptions to this rule.

Rule 1 – If listing your last 5 jobs takes you back to the 70’s or 80’s – don’t do it. I’m iffy about the 90’s these days as well but sometimes it can’t be avoided.

Rule 2 – If you held a whole bunch of short-term contracts – you might want to take your job history far enough back to show a job you were stable in (provided it wasn’t in the 80’s or 70’s.

Rule 3 – If you previously worked in an industry but for the past 4-5 jobs have been doing something different then absolutely go back far enough to show your experience in the industry. (but see rule 1 first).

Let’s look at some scenarios to clarify the rules:

Example 1: Jane used to work as a Retail Assistant from 1975-1980. Since then she had been working in administration. Jane wants to return to Retail. Should Jane list her retail experience on her resume as it is relevant to the job?

No, Jane should not list her retail job from the 70’s on her resume. Because (a) it shows her age and sadly we have a HUGE problem with age discrimination and (b) being a Retail Assistant in the 70’s is NOTHING like being a Retail Assistant in 2017. No EFT, No Credit Card processing, No Automatic Cash Register etc.

Instead Jane should highlight the customer service experience she gained through her administration roles in her professional profile, achievements and role descriptions to showcase her transferable skills.

Example 2: Joe used to work as a Workplace Health and Safety Officer from 1999-2004. But since then has had (6) jobs as a Sales Rep for the next (6)  but now wants to go back to Workplace Health & Safety. Should Joe list his previous experience on the resume?

Yes, the easiest way for Joe to do this is to add in a career summary that shows his dates, company name and job title for his work history and nothing else AND then write a title ‘Workplace Health & Safety Experience’ on his resume where he elaborates on the Workplace Health & Safety Officer job in great detail. This shows he has a work history and hasn’t been lying on the beach for the last few years while also minimizing the sales experience and focusing on the Workplace Health & Safety role.


Interests Have To Be Interesting To List Them On Your Resume

Job Seeker Tip of the Week

If you want to list interests on your resume – make sure they are interesting or don’t waste the space.


Gardening Becomes: Member of the Toowoomba Rose Society for 15+ years, Winner of Best Champion Rose at the Toowoomba Show for (5) years in a row and volunteer with the Brisbane Botanical Gardens.
Fishing Becomes: President of the Toowong Barra Club and volunteer with the ‘Restock Miller Dam’ Committee.
Reading Becomes: Runner Up in the MS Read-A-Thon for reading 60 books in (1) week and raised $20,000 to build libraries in third world countries.

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Remember EVERYONE is writing Reading, Fishing and Gardening on their resume – if you want to use it at least make it something different and if you don’t have any anything related to your interest – is it really an interest anyway?

IT Selection Criteria Example

IT Selection Criteria Example:

Knowledge and Experience (IT Project Manager Application)

As an IT Recruiter with qualifications in Information Systems and Information Technology and proven experience leading small teams in an IT environment, I am certain that I have the knowledge and experience that you require for this position. I am a Microsoft Certified Professional and Apple Certified Macintosh Technician demonstrating my technical knowledge. I’ve also completed International Leadership Training as part of my professional development demonstrating my ability to lead small teams to achieve project management outcomes. Previous positions as an Office Support Technician and Service Technician have provided me with a clear understanding of project management methodologies and the understanding required to break down work structures to achieve results in an IT environment.

In my role as Service Technician, I managed a number of IT projects which included the deployment of specific computer programs into a school based environment. I was involved from design to implementation, which included setting the group policy for the project, keeping the team on track by setting and monitoring milestones and working to a strict timeframe.  Specifically, I implemented the roll out and SOE deployment in a number of Toowoomba Private Schools and purchased hundreds of laptop computers from Apple, coordinated the system requirements and SOE images and deployed the images and systems onsite. All of these projects were delivered on time and according to budget with deadlines occurring from a few days to one month.

I have also gained an understanding and knowledge of project management methodologies and principles during my time working in IT recruitment. In order to recruit suitable candidates for my client’s IT projects, I was required to understand various project management methodologies and systems such as PRINCE2, Agile, ITIL and CCPM etc.

This experience provided the understanding you require in systems infrastructure and database design and I have an excellent understanding of the key technical terms and functions of integration and technology. During my study of BIT and MIS, I have gained extensive knowledge in various fields of IT including systems, infrastructure, networking, security, telecommunications, database and software application etc. During my time as the technical sales consultant and service technician, I gained hands on experience in designing, building, implementing and troubleshooting Windows and Macintosh computer systems at both desktop and server level.

In my current role, I have successfully placed candidates into almost all type of IT positions including project/program managers, change managers, architects, business analysis, developers, testers, database administrations, technical writers and so on. During this process, I have gained a great deal of understanding and knowledge of all related IT technologies and platforms in enterprise application, IT operation, business intelligence, data warehousing and system integration etc.

With specific regard to MS Project, I am able to use this software to create projects, manage project resources and plan a project budget. I am familiar with its functions and capabilities in assisting project managers with project scheduling, resource allocating and tracking as well as budgeting. I believe I will be able to pick up the rest of the MS Project system easily as I am a demonstrated quick learner when it comes to IT. During my time at Nat Technology, I started off with no prior experience in the McIntosh system. It took me one month to become a fully certified McIntosh Service Technician; I became the quickest certified technical in Nat Technology history. In my current role, with no previous experience in recruitment, it took me three months to become a fully functional recruitment consultant as well as the company’s best performer since. As an IT Leader with 9+ years of practical experience in an IT environment, I am certain that I have the technical knowledge and abilities that are required to succeed in the role of IT Project Manager.

Write your own IT Criteria in an hour or less with our DIY Selection Criteria Package – think ‘Fill in the Blank’ templates that make your selection criteria a snap. Learn more here.

Nurse Selection Criteria Example

Nursing Selection Criteria Example

Demonstrated extensive experience and advanced clinical competence in Emergency and Medical Nursing (Nurse Application)

I have over 12 years’ practical experience in providing clinical care to patients in rural and city  hospital environments throughout India, the United States of America and Australia. This includes extensive practical experience in Emergency and Medical Nursing.  I completed a Bachelor of Science (Nursing) qualification through the University of Perth in 2001.

I am currently employed by Thargomindah Hospital in the position of Registered Nurse/Coordinator. I provide emergency treatment to patients suffering from trauma, acute chest pain and respiratory failure.  I manage multiple critically ill patients by assessing and prioritising their care, following instructions from the physician, documenting assessments, care plans and outcomes, and providing quality information and support to patients and family members regarding the condition, prognosis and treatment of the patient.

Prior to this, I was employed by Cunnamulla District Hospital as a Registered Nurse which included attending to patients with chest pain, wounds and trauma injuries. Part of my role required me to provide medical care while transferring patients via the Royal Flying Doctor Service and ambulance. I also have experience in the Critical Care, Intensive Care and Medical and Surgery Units.

My experience includes, but is not limited to:

  • Providing care for patients on Ventilator
  • Acute patient care for over 10 patients
  • Electrocardiogram monitoring
  • Defibrillation and medication administration
  • Administering blood and TPN
  • Providing care to patients for respiratory and cardiac failure
  • Caring for post-operative patients
  • Supervising student nurses
  • Completing injections, transfusions and wound dressings
  • Ability to use ECG Machine, Infusion Pumps, Resuscitation Trolley, Pulse Oximeter, Cardiac Monitor, Nebulisers, Suction Apparatus, Glucometer plus other medical equipment.

Emergency and medical nursing is a day-to-day requirement of my current role. I monitor patients’ conditions and report these to the treating doctor. I also assist the doctor to assess the risk of transporting patients to the nearest hospital facility versus treating patients onsite, in cases such as pregnancies and births.

Emergency care also formed part of my duties with my employment as a Nurse with Cunnamulla Health. I needed to assess each patient’s medical condition to determine the level of risk involved, according to timeframes and priority treatment, in order to provide a quality service to patients. I also provided both high and low level care to aged care patients.

Teacher Selection Criteria Examples

Looking for teacher selection criteria examples? I have you covered.

Approval to teach K-6 and the proven ability to teach multi-grade, multi-age classes (Teacher Application)

I confirm that I have the required approval to teach K-6 in the Public School System as evidenced by experience in NSW coastal, rural and local schools. My approval number with the New South Wales Teaching Association is 123456. I completed a Bachelor of Teaching Degree through Toowoomba University in 1998 and a Bachelor of Education Degree through Miller Teachers College in 1993.

With regards to my ability to teach multi-grade and multi-age classes, my career experience includes both Australian and international teaching experience. Most recently, I have been employed by Kingsthorpe and Muppet Heights on a casual basis where I have taught multi-grade, multi-age classes, with a specific focus on year levels 6 and 7 during the last term.  Prior to this I worked at South West Public School as a Classroom Teacher for composite Kindergarten and Year One students and as a Behavioural Teacher working with K-6 students in a RFF capacity which included the writing and implementation of Mathematics, English and Art programs.

In 2009 and 2010, I worked at Samsung Public School as a classroom teacher for a composite one and two classroom, while also working as a STLA Teacher, teaching literacy and numeracy to ESOL students across K-6. During my career, I have also taught music to 52 students aged between five and eleven, worked as a registered teacher in New Zealand and provided relief teaching duties across the board from K-6. I am able to target learning needs based on the individual classroom dynamics and take an ‘adaptive’ approach to promote equity and excellence within my teaching.  Regardless of the age or year level I teach, I ensure that students are at the centre of my teaching and that all learning is purpose driven and stimulating.


Capacity for effective management to achieve agreed curriculum goals (Teacher Application)
I have the capacity to effectively manage and achieve agreed curriculum goals. For example, with the National Curriculum roll out I had a 10 month timeframe in which to ensure that students were meeting their curriculum goals on a national level. Prior to the 10 month bench mark, I was required to monitor the students’ progress through cluster moderation with other schools in the region. In order to do this, I assessed my students at the start of the roll out to find out what they already knew and what they needed to learn in order to meet the National Curriculum standards and based the students learning around these needs.
I was also responsible for researching and implementing a professional development program called “Words Are The Way” in order to get our students up to the standard required for literacy and spelling. The implementation of this program was a terrific success with all but one of my 28 students receiving 100% in the resulting competition. As a result of this success, other teachers sat in and observed my lessons in order to improve their own understanding and implementation of the program. This success demonstrated that I will be able to bring the same passion and commitment to the curriculum goals of Thargomindah State School but on a larger level.

Demonstrated skills and teaching experience proving quality education in literacy and numeracy

(Teacher Application)

I believe that both literacy and numeracy are the cornerstone of all education. I have completed professional development in both areas to further my existing ability. I have completed training in BRIDGET, Count Me in Too, Targeting Maths, Thinking Tools, Focus on Reading and THRASS. I follow the NSW Quality Teaching and Learning Pedagogy when planning teaching and learning activities and I have a solid background of preparing lessons that provide the best opportunities for each individual. I’ve used Best Start, L3 and Focus on Reading to encourage student development and to create positive relationships within the classroom.

I promote a high standard of participation through encouraging open-ended learning experiences and I create an experience that considers Higher Order Thinking Skills, Blooms Taxonomy and Thinkers Keys. I also use appropriate resources and classroom displays to reflect a tactile learning experience with sound principles and use a ‘whole community’ approach to learning by creating strong relationships with parents and the school community. I have previously taught Literacy (L3) and Numeracy (DENS, TOWN) in small groups, individually and throughout the classroom to cater to all student needs. I’ve also successfully programmed thought provoking content with an emphasis on KLA outcomes and indicators.

Most recently, I have completed training on the new Numeracy and Literacy initiatives to be implemented in 2016, such as using real world application for maths, setting challenges appropriate to the student’s level, and the introduction of three new strands to mathematics. It also includes teaching reading and writing together, exploring the cultural connection of text, deconstruction and reconstruction of text and the importance of responding and composing in language literacy.

Selection Criteria Examples – Personal Drive, Integrity

Need to write personal drive and integrity selection criteria? This is the right place.

Exemplifies personal drive and integrity (Investigator Application)

I maintain exemplary standards of conduct, integrity and professionalism with the ability to identify and manage conflicts of interest and conduct threat and risk assessments.

I conduct threat and risk assessments as part of my role which includes researching and implementing websites to be used as tools to verify customer information, creating risk reports on e-commerce fraud and recovery, management of fraud screening tests, conducting investigations on chargebacks and the development of new detection rules for in-house systems. I also coordinate with the application development team to enhance the administration system in relation to fraudulent enquires and oversee any flagged transaction investigations.

My personal drive is evidenced through my commitment to personal development. I have completed further training in Skill Investigations and Fraud and Security and have provided in house training to teams of 5-10 people. I regularly update my knowledge through reading fraud prevention publications online which have assisted me to use predictive statistical models to create profiles of what typical fraudulent transactions look like. I have a strong record of involvement in improvement processes relating to fraud prevention. For example, I have been responsible for developing new detection rules for our in house systems and making recommendations as to which flagged transactions should be authorised.

Displays Personal Drive and Integrity (Team Leader Application)

Because of my current employment I have an excellent understanding of the Australian Public Service values which includes the ability to be impartial, committed to service, accountable, respectful and ethical while undertaking all tasks associated with my role. I act in the nature of the APS Code of Conduct at all times by ensuring:

  • That I behave honestly at all times during my employment
  • That I act with care and diligence in all tasks assigned to me
  • That I treat all customers, external agencies and team members with respect and courtesy and that I maintain a working environment free from harassment
  • That I comply with all Australian laws and legislation relevant to my role
  • That I respect the authority of my supervisors and managers and follow instructions as required
  • That I maintain confidentiality in all applicable tasks and to meet all confidentiality and privacy laws and legislation
  • That I avoid any conflict of interest between my private and working life
  • That I use the departments resources in the correct manner

Prior to my employment with the Department, I worked for Virgin where I consistently won awards for meeting my sales targets on a national level. I have also ‘stepped up’ to a Team Leader role while management has been on leave or in training and I have volunteered to deliver Cultural Awareness Training to my department. I have a strong record of involvement in our department’s improvement processes, as demonstrated by the time I made and supplied task cards to my team to assist with the new claims and appeals process.

Supports Strategic Direction Selection Criteria Examples

Examples of real life ‘Supports Strategic Direction’ Selection Criteria.

Supports Strategic Direction: (Investigator Application)

Currently employed as the Officer in Charge, E-Commerce Fraud for Knick Knack, I align the direction and strategy of the organisation and identify issues in relation to fraud development and recovery. This involves the analysis of complex issues such as suspicious order activity, flagged activity, the management of fraud strategies and the development of new detection tools. I assess emerging issues or trends in e-commerce fraud and benchmark approaches and practices. I develop long term solutions to current problems and identify any critical gaps in our approach. I take ownership of my responsibilities and I’m able to utilise multiple perspectives when making a decision.

In 2013 my ability to achieve outcomes in relation to fraud investigation and prevention resulted in a chargeback rate of less than 0.05% for e-commerce sales, achieved through modifying the manual screening process and procedures and increasing the effectiveness of fraud detection on a daily basis through the more efficient use of website tools. In my most recent performance review, I achieved a rating of ‘outstanding’ on: performing my key duties and responsibilities effectively, job knowledge, technical skills and the ability to take on new responsibilities and learn new tasks and processes quickly thereby demonstrating my ability to manage and conduct investigations into fraud issues and incidents.

I work closely with the frontline business to improve our existing processes and to implement new fraud prevention techniques and I conduct thorough reviews on customers’ orders to perform fraud checks on their information which allows us to identify new fraud trends. For example, a review of chargeback transactions allowed us to develop additional procedures for similar incidences.

I have an excellent understanding of criminal and administrative law developed through a Master of Justice Studies with a Major in Criminal Justice qualification obtained from Goliad University in 2002. This allows me to make sound judgments and achieve outcomes that advance company interests, specifically related to e-commerce fraud prevention.

 Shapes strategic thinking (Analyst Application)

As Project Manager at Custom Carrier, I am responsible for the operational requirements of telephone systems, including strategic and tactical initiatives.  In my role, I am sent an executive strategy from the CEO which I break down into operational procedures in order to meet the agreed target. These targets are usually based on finding and delivering solutions based on the end user requirements. The solutions I develop have a positive impact on the company in a number of different ways. For example, they increase the return on investment or benefit our customers through faster waiting periods. As part of any strategic plan that I develop I ensure that I implement quarterly benchmarks in order to track our progress. This enables my team to stay on track and for us to be able to monitor our progress and make adjustments as required.

I recently completed a project for the Contact Department of the organisation. I needed to evaluate the department’s needs based on their requirements and research a solution based on their existing infrastructure.  This research included a cost analysis of the project and if the project would still be viable in the medium to long term future. After the research phase of the project was completed, I contacted the stakeholders to arrange a meeting where I discussed the technology the department currently used, where technology is heading and what we could do to solve their issues.  This meeting involved a question and answers session to clarify any questions and a power point presentation where I discussed the positives and negatives of maintaining the old technology vs. updating to new technology. After the meeting, the key stakeholders signed off on the project which involved setting milestones and an agreement as to the expected time frames and what the end result would look like.  I then contacted the venders for tender and put the plan into production. This project was executed according to the agreed terms and completed at cost and to schedule, leading to positive feedback from stakeholders and my direct supervisor.