CV Writing Tips

Some helpfull tips for preparing and writing your cv before applying for any vacancies:

 

1. Presentation; you want your CV to stand out but obviously not for the wrong reasons! You should use clear formatting, a smart font which is clear and readable, bold or italics where appropriate for headers and for important information you want to emphasise such as previous employers, job titles, professional and academic qualifications, achievements etc

 

2. Introduction / Summary; this should be written at the top of your cv and is the place to sell yourself and attract the recruiters' attention. A paragraph featuring your achievements, abilities and relevant experience. It is a snapshot for what to expect in the rest of the cv and often will make the recruiter decide if they want to continue reading. This should be written with the job and company you are applying for in mind and can be rewritten for different vacancies.

 

3. Length; 2-3 pages is typical, one page even for a new graduate will look lazy, even if you do not have much experience you should include information such as personal achievements and any transferable key skills from sports, voluntary work, education etc. Experienced job seekers will need to keep their experience brief and relevant with the focus on more recent employment, training and qualifications and what is relevant to the particular vacancy. Too many pages or too much detail and the recruiter is likely to lose interest, remember this should be a brief introduction, not your entire life story.

 

4. Chronological Order; always start the employment and education sections with the most recent first, if the recruiter reads your high school qualifications first they may not carry on to see you have a higher degree. Include the dates for employment and education and if there are any gaps make sure these are explained whether it was health problems, unemployed, travelling, studying, caring for family etc

 

5. Content; keep the sentences to a minimum, use bullet points where possible such as your duties in previous employment, qualifications etc. Recruiters will usually skim through c.v's first of all so the main points must stand out.

 

6. Other information; do not include references, instead put 'references available upon request at interview' at the end of the c.v. Include brief information about hobbies, interests and any outside achievements such as sports or charity work. This should tell the recruiter a bit about you as a person.

 

7. Honesty; do not exaggerate achievements, lie about reasons for leaving jobs etc. You will only get found out at interviews

 

8. Spelling; always spell check before you send!

 

9. Re-write; make sure your cv is relevant to the vacancy and employer you are applying to , highlight the experience and skills which are relevant for that role, rewrite parts of your cv for different vacancies.

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