There are some tasks in the process of creating your CV that should always happen. At the risk of nagging a little bit, honestly, if you don’t do the basics right, it makes our work here a lot harder. If your CV doesn’t work well, then you are really going into the employment process on the wrong foot. This article is not about the basics, it is about refining and polishing your CV but, just to be clear, these are some of the most common mistakes.
- Wrong information. Changes to mobile numbers, wrong postal addresses and so on are quite common.
- Spelling and grammar. If you are going for a job where this is not a primary skill, it shouldn’t matter – but it does.
- Making yourself look good is one thing, but we do sometimes see CVs with, shall we say, serious exaggerations. It’s not worth it.
- Unexplained gaps and over explained job roles. If you have taken time out or been unemployed, say so. Also, there is no need for pages of description for a job that is quite commonly recognised.
- Not enough information. Your CV should be complete and tell the reader enough about your history to be useful.
- Not selling yourself very well. See tip number 2 below for more on this.
So, that is our nag over. Here, as promised, are five quick tips for creating a really strong CV that will advance you along the employment process.
- Do your research about the job role you are applying for. Some candidates have a tendency to use the same CV repeatedly, but this is not a good idea. If you are looking for a particular role or want your career to head in a particular direction, tailor your CV to most feature the skills and experience that will be required for the role you want.
- Talk about your achievements in context. What we mean here is instead of simply stating you are a team player or you can work on your own initiative, give an example of not just when you have done so but what that achieved for your employer.
- Be individual and show personality. Your CV does not need to just be a list of your jobs and personal information. Try to look for opportunities to show your personality.
- But not so much personality that it stops being a CV. Your CV still needs to be easy to read and give the reader the basic information. Try to strike a balance between listing skills, abilities, experience, and so on, and making your CV an interesting read.
- Make it easy for them to want to interview you. Think about the psychology of the employer for a moment and ask yourself why they are looking at your CV. You will come up with only one answer – because they want to find someone for their vacancy. Nobody reads a CV for fun, so sit down, grab a cup of tea, and before you re-write for the role you are applying for, put yourself in the position of the employer. Once you have done that, make your CV really stand out by giving them the information they really want to see – why you are perfect for this job. Tell them why, based on your skills, experience and abilities and examples of how you have used them in the past. Include your development goals so they know you want to grow with their business.
A great CV will be your first step towards the next leap forward in your career, so it has to be right, and it has to be about you, not your facts and figures.
If you want to discuss your career opportunities and potential development, please do give us a call and we will be happy to help you out.