Almost all CVs fail to put ‘i before e…’ -- or similar

‘Experience,’ ‘strategising’ and many other words that contractors typically use when going forward for work are among the most common misspellings on CVs.

‘Professional’ is the third most prolific offender -- behind both ‘experience’ in first place (often spelt ‘experiance’), and ‘responsibilities,’ the second most likely to be spelt wrongly.

‘Liaising’ is the fourth largest faux paus, then ‘strategising’ then, in order, some more buzzwords somehow evading the spell-checker -- ‘management,’ ‘efficient’ and ‘maintenance.’  


Given how frequently the biggest culprit of ‘experience’ featured, Adzuna, which detected the errors, reminded that although a good CV may contain many things, it must definitely be “flaw-free.”

“[Hirers] may be put off by amateur CV errors”, said the job search engine’s co-founder Andrew Hunter, who found ‘experience’ to be written wrongly 62 times in 20,000 CVs.

“They suggest…soft skills such as attention to detail [are lacking]. And when spellcheck and CV-screening tools are easily accessible, there really is no excuse”.


Out of the 20,000-strong sample, only 1,134 CVs contained no spelling mistakes, equating to less than six per cent of the total pile, and meaning that more than nine in 10 are flawed.

Perhaps worse, more than six in 10 were “error-riddled,” Mr Hunter said, meaning they contained five or more mistakes, with 12,666 falling into this category.

Americanisms were “rife” too, as the CVs cited ‘organization’ when they meant ‘organisation,’ and applicants said they ‘specialized’ in a certain skill or had good ‘humor.’

Extra apostrophes

The biggest, albeit probably least surprising failing of the CVs was with apostrophes. In fact, in more 1,000 of the 20,000 CVs, the authors wrongly added extra apostrophes.

Typically made in the ‘Education’ section, the blunder saw GCSEs written as GCSE’s, A-Levels written as A-Level’s and elsewhere on the CVs, KPIs written as KPI’s.

Women emerged as slightly better at double-checking wording and spellings, with eight per cent of females' CVs showing no mistakes compared to six per cent of males' CVs.

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Written by Simon Moore

Simon writes impartial news and engaging features for the contractor industry, covering, IR35, the loan charge and general tax and legislation.
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