Your CV is your chance to communicate that you are the right person for a job, so it’s really important to create a professional impression and include the right information to attract the employer’s attention.
What to Include
- Personal details - name, address, telephone numbers, email address, nationality, driving licence/use of vehicle
- Personal profile - this should be a short paragraph detailing key facts about you – your language skills, experience and other positive attributes that you can offer a company
- Education, qualifications and professional memberships - most recent first
- Professional experience – most recent job first, with job titles, company and type of business, main responsibilities and achievements
- Languages - both written and spoken, with accurate level of fluency in each
- IT skills - particularly any specialist programmes or software e.g. SAP, accountancy packages, Sales Force
- Hobbies/interests - this is a chance to stand out from the crowd. Unusual hobbies can often be an interesting topic of conversation at interview
It takes a professional about 30 seconds to scan a CV and form a first impression of you, so it is crucial that you take the time to check it so that they will want to read on in more detail and invite you to an interview.
Keep It Short
The interview is your opportunity to expand on your CV, so do not try to put every detail on paper! Be concise, keeping your CV to two or three pages at most.
Tailor Your CV to the Job
Each role is different and each prospective employer will be looking to see if you match up to specific criteria for the job. Make it easy for them and tailor your CV to emphasise the qualities and experience that make you suitable for their vacancy.
CV Do's and Don’ts
- Proofread carefully and ask someone else to review your CV if possible
- Have the essential information easily visible on the first page - contact details, current role
- Be concise - titles and bullet points can help
- Never exaggerate, attempt to mislead or be dishonest. Facts can be checked, and you will not get the job when you are found out
- Don’t leave unexplained gaps - it is better to explain any periods of unemployment, contract work, travelling etc. from the outset
- Don’t include details about your children or pets
- Don’t include a photo, your marital status or age/date of birth (unless you are under 18)