CV - Page 2

How to Write a Great CV

A curriculum vitae or CV for short is a document used to apply for a job. It allows you to state your education, skill, previous job experience, which enables you to successfully represent yourself to potential employers. A standard CV should not be longer than two sides of an A4 paper. To make sure that it runs across the recommended two pages, your main points should be your education and experience. In this article, you will be able to learn what things should you include in your CV, as well as some tips on the format of it. Let’s take a look:

What to Include in a CV

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  1. Contact Details – you should include your full name, address, mobile number, and your email address. You do not need to include a photograph or date of birth unless you are applying for a modeling or acting job.

 

  1. Profile – a profile should be at the beginning of the CV and it should concise a statement that will highlight your key skills and attributes or the reasons for deciding to work in the particular field you are applying to. You should choose a few skills and achievements while articulating them in your career goals.

 

  1. Education – state and date your previous education, including any professional qualifications that you might have, placing the most recent ones first. Where relevant, you should also include individual modules.

 

  1. Work Experience – the work experience should be listed in reverse chronological order. Also, you should ensure that anything you mention is relevant to the position you are applying for. If you have a lot of relevant work experience, this section should be listed before the education part.

 

  1. Achievements and Skills – this is where you write about the languages you speak, as well as your IT level. Whatever you choose to write, you should not over-exaggerate since you will need to back up your claims during the interview. According to the experts from GekonntBewerben, if you have a lot of skills that are relevant to the job, you should do a skills-based CV.

 

  1. Interests – simply writing “reading books” or “socializing” will not attract the attention of the employer. However, if relevant to the job, your interests should provide a picture of who you are since it will give you something to talk about during the interview. You can include things like writing your own blog, or being a part of a book club.

 

  1. References – you do not need to provide the names of references. You should also not write “references available if requested” since most recruiters will assume this is the case.

CV Format

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You should avoid fonts like Comic Sans, instead choose something more professional, easy to read, and clear – such as Times New Roman or Arial. Also, the font size should be 10 to 12 in size, but nothing smaller than that. Also, section headings are perfect for breaking up your CV. List everything in reverse chronological order so that the employer can see you most recent achievements first.

How To Write a Good CV

You should use active verbs wherever it is possible. There should abstemiously be no grammar or spelling mistakes. You can use spell checkers to check if the CV is well-written. You should also avoid using over-used phrases like “hardworking” or “team player”, instead you should use real-life examples that will demonstrate your skills. Also, take a look at the company’s website in order to ensure that your CV is targeted to the role and employer. Keep in mind that your email address should look and sound professional.

Conclusion

The tips from this article will help you write the best CV and it might be just the thing you need to land the job you wanted.

 

Is relevancy and length of your resume important?

If you are updating your resume or even writing a new one, you are probably faced with a daunting task. You know that it has to be well-written, concise and to include all necessary information. When there is a job opening, managers receive hundreds, and sometimes even thousands of resumes, so you have to ensure that yours won’t get overlooked. In the following text, we are going to give you some tips on how to write it and also discuss how important is its length.

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The first piece of advice we have got for you is to never send the same resume for different job applications. If you use a generic one, it will never stand out from others and it might never be inspected. When you write or customize an existing paper, it is a good idea to have a job description nearby. What’s more, read it thoroughly before writing the resume. This way you will know what the requirements are, thus what information you should include and what to omit. The CV should not be overcrowded with unnecessary information, because not only will they make it too long, but the chances are no one is going to read it.

This brings us to our next point – the length. If the resume is too short it might seem that you have no experience, therefore, the company cannot benefit from your work. On the other hand, if it is too long, the managers will not lose precious time reading it. Even though there are no specific rules when it comes to this and there is no right answer, there are some things that affect the length of your CV.

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The biggest debate is whether one should write one-page or two-page resume. The first one should be used by people who are hunting for their first job. This includes recent college graduates, people who only have a small amount of experience in that field or even those that are making a career change. In order for your resume to make a good first impression it has to be concise, include important keywords, and list your achievements. On the other note, employees who have experience of 10 or more years and thus have many accomplishments in their careers should write the two-page resume. It is always better to format a CV to be readable and professional instead of cramming everything onto one page. Just keep in mind that the second page of it probably won’t get as much attention as the first one, so you should organize it in a way that all the important information are easily detected. Take a look at some great resume examples at The Ladders.

Lastly, many people opt for hiring professional writing services to complete this task for them. Since they fully understand the importance of the CV, they perceive themselves as not capable to rise to the challenge, so they ask others for help, which is okay. If you are considering this option, from this CNBC article you will learn some things you should know before employing a writing service.

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All in all, as you can see, although there are no specific rules when it comes to writing a CV, there are still some guidelines that you should follow. Use the job description as guidance, customize a resume for every job application, use specific keywords and also apply bullet point to highlight the important words or phrases.

How to keep up with today’s CV trends

Unemployment rates are still unacceptably high in far too many countries: with the official numbers often far below reality. With so many people desperate for work, it’s no surprise that there are so many job applicants for every position. Job seekers are constantly under pressure to stand out from the crowd: and this means keeping up with today’s CV trends.

(1) Prepare your CV for ATS software

Many large companies use ATS software – designed to filter through a pile of CVs and pick out worthwhile candidates. Despite the fact that both HR managers and developers acknowledge the software’s shortcomings, it continues to save recruiters hours of time and for this reason, it is unlikely to go away any time soon. Consequently, if you’re applying to an FTSE 200 or Fortune 500 company, there’s a fair chance your CV will go through the software.

ATS software can be confused by the use of tables and graphics so for these companies, it’s better to pick a simpler CV layout that focuses on content. Plenty of sites have templates you can download and fill in and to help you with the choice, here are two suggestions: Cvtemplatemaster.com and prospects.ac.uk. Of course, feel free to browse some other websites as well and the find the one that you like most.

It’s also vital to analyze the job advert and pick out keywords and phrases that the software will be scanning for. If, for example, they specify a BSc in Computer Science (and assuming you have one!) make sure the exact same words are used on your CV. Take care if a past employer used a more obscure job title such as ‘Customer Relationship Liaison’ rather than ‘Account Manager’ – it’s better to use titles that the employer is expecting because these are the ones that the ATS software will be searching for.

(2) Write a keyword-rich personal statement

A CV used to have just a few basic sections: personal details, work history, education and references. Now employers expect to see a personal statement at the top which should follow a very definite format, as follows:

  1. Explain who you are.
  2. Explain how you meet the requirements of the job.
  3. Explain what you’re looking for.

The best way to understand how this works is through an example. Here’s an extract from a real-life job advert from Recruitment Site ‘Indeed’:

“Customer Service Advisor:

To excel in your role, you will need:

Face-to-face customer service experience

Strong communication skills

A passion for delivering excellent customer service

Ability to remain calm when under pressure

Basic IT skills”

So how would you write a personal statement that matches this advert? Here’s an example:

“I am a Customer Service Advisor with three years of face-to-face customer service experience in the motor repairs trade. Working at a highly reputable, very busy repair shop in central town, I am highly capable of delivering excellent customer service in a high-pressure environment. I have developed strong communication skills through liaising between customers, suppliers and mechanics. I also have excellent IT skills, having worked with various systems in the shop. I am looking for a full-time role in the motor industry.”

Note how the above example uses the EXACT keywords from the job advert – this is crucial for two reasons.

Firstly, if the employer IS using ATS software, that software will be scanning for those keywords. Don’t try and use alternative synonyms – this may fail the ATS test.

Secondly, if the employer is manually reviewing your CV, they will only spend a few seconds scanning it to see if you meet the requirements. In fact, according to Cambridge Network, the amount of time spent could be as little as 6 seconds!

Your personal statement needs to immediately demonstrate to the employer that you have what they are looking for. If you try to make them work harder by reading further into your CV, they are likely to give up and dismiss your CV altogether.

(3) Understand the F Pattern

Paper CVs are a thing of the past – now it’s all about technology and the majority of CVs will be sent digitally. So what does this mean for job seekers looking to design the perfect CV?

Back in 2006, the NN Group released a study that showed how people read content on the screen, demonstrating that peoples’ eyes tend to move in an F pattern. Many experts got pretty excited by this and encouraged people to design their online content around that pattern. Unfortunately, they had misunderstood the study.

Put simply, the F pattern is bad. If the content forces people to read this way, it means the content is poorly designed and the user is not fully engaged. The last thing a job seeker should do is deliberately design their CV to meet the pattern.

Fortunately, the NN Group’s  Senior Vice President Kara Pernice put us straight with an updated article explaining the mistake in 2017. She also listed off the ‘the Best Antidotes to the F-Shaped Pattern’  which are essential reading for any job seeker looking to stand out. You can read her update here.

Finally…

Understanding today’s trends is essential if you are to make any impact at all in a saturated and highly competitive job market. By preparing an ATS-friendly CV with a strong personal statement that avoids the dreaded F-pattern, you will give yourself the very best chance of winning that all-important first interview. Good luck!