Should you add interests to your resume? Will it have an effect on your job applications? These are common questions people ask and in this guide, we’ll talk about the main pros and cons of listing interests in your one-page CV.
Also, we’ll tell you which interests you should add to the resume and which ones you should leave out. Last but not least, we’ll explain to you where and how to add interests to your CV.
Why add interests to your resume?
There are several pros and cons for listing interests to your CV.
- Prove valuable skills. For example, if you have an interest such as writing a blog, that can show you have writing, communication, and editing skills.
- Get your personality across. The resume can sometimes be a bit boring, so adding a few interests can help the recruiter know your unique traits. Also, it will make the document more exciting to read.
- Stand out. If you’re applying for a role and there are a lot of similar candidates in terms of qualifications and experience, then adding some interests can make you stand out against the crowd. Just like when instead of writing a lengthy, dull CV, you use our one-page resume builder to get a CV that will set you apart and actually land you interviews.
- They can be irrelevant. Sometimes, people’s interests have nothing to do with the role. Therefore, including them in the resume won’t add any value to the job application.
- They waste space. Many people will argue that a resume is about work experience and qualifications. Don’t waste space with a huge section about your interests that could be better used writing about other areas.
- It could put employers off. If you have some interests that the person reading your CV doesn’t agree with or finds offensive, that might cause them to move on to the next resume.
Should you add interests to your resume?
Now that we talked about the pros and cons of adding your interests to your CV, we’ll help you decide whether you should do it or not.
Who should add hobbies to their resume?
- Junior candidates. If you’re a graduate or a school-leaver, then chances are you don’t have much work experience, which gives you very little to write about. Therefore, adding some interests to your CV and extracting some skills and knowledge from them is a good way to compensate for the lack of experience.
- Those with work-related interests. If your interests are highly-related to the work that you’re applying for, it’s recommended to write about them. For instance, if you’re applying for a role in the IT field and you happen to build websites in your spare time, then there are plenty of relevant skills you can pull from that and list them on the resume.
- Those with spectacular interests. If, for example, you climb mountains, run marathons, or raise money for charity, then you have some non-work-related interests that can impress recruiters and make them more inclined to invite you for an interview. And in order to be prepared, you should read our blog post on how to nail a virtual interview.
Who shouldn’t add hobbies to their resume?
- Those with common interests. Interests like going out to eat, spending time with friends, or going to the cinema won’t really knock the recruiter’s socks off, so there isn’t any point in putting them into your CV.
- Experienced candidates. Not that they shouldn’t, but they don’t need to add interests to their resume. If you’ve been working for seven years in your field and you’re applying for jobs that match your experience, it’s unlikely that your interests will make much of an impact. If you have some work-related or spectacular interests you could add them, but they won’t make a big difference.
Which interests should you add to your resume?
If you’ve decided to add some interests to the resume, here are some examples of ones that might make a good impression on recruiters.
- Writing. If you write for a website, have a blog, or write poems, stories, novels, and so on, you should include that in your CV. This is an essential skill for many jobs, whether it’s writing emails, documents, or bids. It’s a transferable skill that employers appreciate.
- Travel. This is an interesting one, since a lot of modern, open-minded companies love seeing travel listed as a hobby on resumes. It can mean that the candidate is a well-rounded person, sociable, and likes to experience things.
- Volunteering. If you’re volunteering or you volunteered for a charity or a business, there are tons of valuable skills you can pull from that and relate them to the role you’re applying for.
- Sports teams and clubs. If, for instance, you play for a basketball team or you’re part of a golf club, that can show motivation, dedication, and proactivity. Also, there are plenty of skills that can be extracted, such as teamwork and communication.
- Events. If you were involved in any kind of event, whether running them yourself or supporting them, that proves you have skills like organization, project management, and planning, all of which are super important in numerous roles.
Which interests should you leave out of your resume?
It’s well worth taking a look at some of the interests that are best left out of the resume.
- Sensitive topics. Avoid anything that could be deemed offensive to somebody. Some examples are strong political views and religious views.
- Common pastimes. These are things that pretty much everybody does. For example socializing with friends, going to the cinema, and going out for dinner. Since we all do these things, they won’t make a massive impression on the recruiter.
- Passive hobbies. Things like watching TV are not something you’re actively getting involved in. That means it won’t be very spectacular to the employer.
Where and how to add your interests to your resume?
The best thing to do is adding the interests at the bottom of your resume. Generally speaking, your education, qualifications, and work experience are more important than your interests. Write about those first and leave interests more towards the bottom.
List each interest and add some details about each one. The idea is to show some of the achievements that you’ve made within those interests. It’s also to demonstrate the skills that you used to do those things.
At Reedact, we’re here to help you build an awesome CV that will do just that. Show your education history, qualifications, achievements, career history, skills, development, and interests on one single page. Ready to make your resume stand out? Let’s get started!