Creating a successful CV is a tricky task to master, with employers having different ideas about what they look for in the all-important resume. If you’re struggling to get started, or you aren’t having any luck with your jobs search, read these top tips to build the perfect CV!
Before you write your CV, research the industry and specifically the company you hope to join. See if there are any themes of key philosophies that are apparent and align your CV to show that you are the perfect match. Plenty of career service websites out there list the common skills and traits you should possess for a particular industry or position, so if you hold any of them make sure your CV shows it.
It’s a well-known fact that the vast majority of employers will only look at a CV for 5-7 seconds. This means that your opening few lines need to be powerful and to the point. Use this as an opportunity to list why you would be perfect for the job you are applying for and make the reader want to continue reading.
Have a copy of the job advert you’re applying for with you when you write your CV. Make sure your CV ticks off most, if not all, of the desired skills and qualities the employer is looking for.
Technology has had an effect on the way we look for jobs, and the way we get hired for them. If you upload your CV to a job site, make sure it’s laden with relevant buzzwords and skills as this will rank it as a suitable match if an employer is doing a search. But don’t overdo it as your CV may be penalised.
It’s great saying that you increased return on invest for your team, but does it actually mean anything if you don’t have the figures to back it up? Numbers talk to employers, probably more than rambling sentences, so impress them with some statistics.
There is a debate amongst career professionals over the listing of experience on your CV. One camp says that it should be in reverse chronological order, while the other argues that the most relevant should come first. It really is a judgement call, just make sure anything on there isn’t a waste of space. For example, if you are applying for teaching jobs, but your school-related experience was four years ago, you would ideally list that first.
It may seem like the obvious one, but combing through your CV for spelling and grammatical errors is absolutely essential. Some hiring managers have admitted that even one spelling or grammar mistake has led to them throwing a CV in the bin. Don’t let one easily rectifiable error cost you your dream job.
Ask a friend
Once you’ve finished your CV, ask a friend or relative to take a look over it. You’re so used to reading it that you might be missing some glaring spelling or grammar mistakes, so a fresh pair of eyes will help weed them out. Someone who knows you or has worked with you before may also remember times that you have shown the skills you have listed, and providing examples of your achievements or abilities is a great way to impress employers.