Everyone has an opinion on what makes a good CV but there are a few guidelines that everyone should stick to. Your single most important marketing tool is your CV.
It is important, therefore, that it lists your best-selling points relevant to the job you are applying for, and be short and concise. It is highly likely that your CV will be one of many, possibly hundreds, so recruiters or consultants might just scan through it, possibly giving it only 30 seconds. Make yours stand out by being well presented and clearly structured, always starting with the most relevant recent information.
Emphasise your skills
The perfect CV should direct the reader’s focus to the skills that qualify you for the role, and what differentiates you from any other applicant. For every job application you apply for you will need a new CV. Always highlighting your skills that are relevant to the role keeping content both honest and accurate.
Your CV is likely to form the framework for the interview so expect to be asked questions on the content. For that reason, it is extremely important that you feel comfortable with it and know it inside and out.
Structure and content
Start with the most relevant information. It is crucial that you think carefully about what they are looking for and as you add the content always think about how closely you can match it. Extremely important that all spelling, grammar and punctuation is correct.
Your professional experience is more relevant, so put this ahead of your academic details. And once you’ve given a brief description of each job/work experience use bullet points to highlight your role and responsibilities. This helps to keep everything clear and to the point.
Design & Presentation
You can find a wide range CV templates free online. The basic rule to always bear in mind is substance before style. Better to be simple and to the point than distracting and hard to read.
1st Personal Details (Top of the Page): Name, Location, Contact Details, Work Permit (if relevant). No need to include date of birth, nationality or gender.
2nd Your Profile: This is your opportunity to sell yourself. If they like what they read here they will spend more time on your CV. Talk about your strengths and experience always keeping in mind what they are looking for and include how this role is your next step in your journey. This should be no more than 3 to 4 lines.
3rd Work Experience/Responsibilities: Talk about your experience and responsibilities around what they are looking for. Detail them in short, bullet-pointed statements. If possible back everything up with quantifiable facts, such as size of budgets and teams managed and results achieved. If you don’t know maybe google can help.
4th Education and Qualifications: If you attended college or university and would like to shout from the roof tops about how well you did then I recommend you do. If education wasn’t your strong point don’t worry. It’s not for all of us. You don’t have to include it if it’s not relevant to the role.
5th Extra-Curricular Activities: Employers love to see what candidate’s interests are. Sometimes having something in common with the employer can be a game changer, so give a brief description about your interest and passions.
6th References: Always have a few people lined up to give a good strong reference for you. No need to add it to your CV, simply state “references on available request”.
Best of Luck with the job hunting 😊