Your CV is your personal sales brochure and, in most instances, will be compared with a vast number of other candidates.
How to write your CV
Start by including your personal and contact details. You don’t need to include supporting documents/certificates/recommendation letters at this stage. Make sure your qualifications and previous jobs are dated and if there are any gaps in your dates, explain briefly why. If your internal job title is likely to confuse, use a universally recognized job title instead. Avoid sweeping statements when illustrating your capabilities, just be clear about what your main selling points are e.g.:
- Were you employed by a well-known company?
- If the company isn’t well-known, state the scope and size of business.
- Do you have a rare skill set?
- State the size and scope of your responsibilities such as: number of people, budget.
- What are your achievements? Use adverbs where possible, e.g. “successfully implemented ….”
- Dedicate just a couple of lines to you and your hobbies/interests.
Formatting your CV
- Aim to keep your CV to 2-3 pages preferably in Microsoft Word (interim CV’s may be longer).
- Include page numbering and your name on each page.
- Space the text out – with clear breaks in between sections.
- Use bullet points to pull out key information.
- Write in the third person ie avoid using “I was involved with ….” And instead use “Responsible for ….” or “Achieved …”
Once you’ve written your CV, ask yourself the following questions
- Is my CV realistic? Don’t exaggerate or undersell
- Is the content relevant to the job you are applying for
- Would you want to meet you if you read your CV?