CV Tips

You must not underestimate the importance of your CV (Curriculum Vitae). It is very often the only thing that a prospective employer will see before deciding whether you can be of benefit to the company and whether he/she is interested enough in you to conduct an interview.  No matter how well suited you are, you are not going to get a job if you cannot get an interview.

You need to bear in mind that what you produce will be seen as an example of your work. Also, a prospective employer may be sifting through numerous CVs and only be looking to interview a couple of candidates so time spent here is well worth the effort.

Writing an effective CV:

  • Firstly, take the time to tailor your CV to the role for which you are applying.
  • Try to keep to a three page maximum. To help with this, only detail relevant experience and just use headlines to show the date continuity on other roles.
  • If you have achievements and awards make sure to mention them.
  • Make sure that it is easy to read when printed in black and white. Fancy fonts and coloured designs may not help.
  • Keep to the truth.
  • No grammar or spelling mistakes allowed.

A suggested structure:

Name and contact details
Don’t waste space writing Curriculum Vitae at the top of the page or use a lot of space giving extensive contact details.  Employers know it is a CV and a recruitment agency will only remove that detail anyway.

Personal Profile
Give a summary that will grab the attention of the employer aiming yourself at their specific requirement.

Skills
Have a skills section listing all your areas of expertise (personal and technical). From a technical perspective, a matrix with an assessment rating or listing the number of years active use is a great idea. Bear in mind that recruitment agencies will pull shortlists via “buzz words” and if you don’t have them listed you will not be contacted.

Work History
Present your work history in reverse chronological order, with your current employer first, highlighting your main achievements in each role.

Education
Again in reverse chronological order, your most significant and relevant ones are the most important. Only mention grades if they are good ones.

Hobbies and Interests
Some may think that this is not important but if you have the same hobbies as your prospective manager it could grab their attention. Also, any related achievements should be listed as they can help demonstrate your winning mentality or dedication to the pursuit of excellence in all walks of life.

References
"References Available Upon Request" or include contact details of 2 referees who can be approached.

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