Age-Proofing Your Resume

Nancy Anderson
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Age discrimination happens often during the contemporary hiring process, even though it's illegal. That's because hiring managers may feel as if older workers aren't as savvy with technology. They may also have a bias against older hires who may ask for a higher salary due to more industry experience. Age-proof your resume to reduce the chances of these biases limiting your career opportunities.

Remove Information That Reveals Your Age

Your resume should only include the past 10 years of your job history. Avoid listing the jobs you held in college or the entry-level positions you held after you graduated. If you held a job with the same company for 20 years, only include the most recent positions you held with the company on your resume. since you likely earned a promotion in that 20-year span. Another option is to use a functional resume that focuses on your skills and experience rather than longevity in the workforce. Only include relevant jobs from beyond 10 years if they are relevant to the skill set you need to perform the job.

Limit your personal information as much as possible. Don't list the year you graduated from college, and update the name of your school if it changed since you graduated. Use contemporary terms for technology, such as PC rather than computer.

Update Your Professional Documents

Compose your resume in a contemporary font that balances the white space on the page with the letters. Use an email address as a form of contact, and include your social media information on your document. Consider creating your own professional website to direct employers to if they need more information. On your website, include your portfolio and various samples of your work. Join professional organizations, as listing information about your association with certain organizations on your resume can impress recruiters. If possible, join a tech-related association or organization that stays on top of the latest trends in the industry.

Highlight Your Skills

Rather than an Objective section, start out with a Career Summary that highlights four or five of your top skills. List only the most important career achievements to this point, and use actual data to back up your claims. For instance, you can prove you're a top salesperson by saying you increased sales at your most recent employer by 5 percent each quarter for three years in a row. Doing this not only shows employers that you're highly skilled and bring a lot to the table, but also, it prioritizes your skills rather than your experience and age.

Combat age discrimination in the workplace by wowing your future employer with your resume. This may take a little effort to accomplish, but the rewards are well worth it.

Photo courtesy of Aaron Lester at


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  • Nancy Anderson
    Nancy Anderson

    @Marie R thanks for your comment. It can be harder as we get older but it's certainly not impossible to get a job. They knew you weren't 30 before they brought you in for the interview. So there is something that they liked. Ask. Ask the interviewer what it was about your resume that caught his attention enough to schedule an interview. Then you could try to play that particular aspect to your benefit. And, after the interview, thank them and then go write up a thank you card and put it in the mail. They will appreciate it and maybe your age won't be a factor in their final decision.

  • Marie R.
    Marie R.

    I can get the interviews then they meet me and know I am not 30 very hard to handle.

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