The first step to getting an interview is by getting noticed. So one of the most important things to focus on during the application process is your CV (Curriculum Vitae).
The CV is not just a list of your experiences and achievements, it is kind of a medium for advertising which you use to present yourself as a job applicant and try to claim that you are the best candidate for the job you are applying for. It tells the story of what you’ve done and what you can do. A well written CV could be the difference between getting an interview and not being considered for the role.
Here are some tips on how to create your CV.
Tip One: Job Description
The first thing that is really important and most of the candidates forget to do, is to read the Job Description. The Job Description gives you the most important information and shows you what the employer is looking for. It outlines the necessary skills, training and education needed and also the duties and responsibilities of the job. This will help you tailor your CV to the position.
Tip Two: The CV should be no longer than two sides of A4
Your CV will have little time to impress, so you don’t want to write information that is irrelevant for the job you are applying for. The recruiter will look at your CV and try to find something that will make him invite you to the interview. The CV should aim to cover 2 pages and no more than 3. For academic and technical CVs, you might need to go further more in details in the education section and your CV might be slightly longer than two sides. But the same rules still apply: keep it sharp and concise.
Tip Three: Contact Details
Include your name, address, phone numbers and email address so the recruiter can contact you easily. Don’t use email addresses that look unprofessional.
Tip Four: Work Experience
You should list your most recent position first, counting in reverse chronological order making sure that anything you mention is relevant to the job you’re applying for. Highlight tasks and responsibilities that show your skills and strengths, so the person scanning your CV can quickly match up your experience with their job description. You should include your job title, the dates of employment, name of employer, nature of business and achievements.
Tip Five: Education
In this section you should also give brief details of your academic and professional qualifications in reverse chronological order. Point out skills or knowledge that you have developed. If you are looking for your first job and you don’t have any work experience, think about other things you have been involved in such as school clubs or volunteering. Include this after your contact details.
Tip Six: Projects
Your project should definitely be included in your CV whether is an Academic project or side projects that you’ve done outside of work or school. If you know a software program or programming language, have a prized certification in the field, or years of experience doing something that takes time to learn how to do, this is the section in which you can brag a little more.
Tip Seven: Skills
Include every IT packages you can use as well as any foreign language you speak and state if you are at a basic, intermediate or advanced level. You should not over-exaggerate with your skills, as you will need to back up your claims at the interview.
Tip Eight: Hobbies, interests and additional skills
Including these is optional. You don’t necessarily have to write “hobbies” in your resume, but you can add relevant experience or skills that can let the employer know what interests you.
Your CV should be visually appealing and also attractive to the eye. The purpose of this document is to get you an interview, so make sure it is well organized. Keep things simple and remember you’re not writing a CV for yourself, you are writing it for your reader. Keep it short, to the point, don’t use too fancy fonts and keep the colors to minimum. Your resume should be easy to read.
Check for spelling errors. Any errors are your responsibility even if the role you are applying for doesn’t require a high level of literacy. Spelling errors scream lack of care and that is not something your recruiter is looking for. If you’re not sure about a word, look it up in a dictionary.
I hope this was helpful and try to follow these short tips next time you are applying for a job.