There is a lot of advice being given in this area, some of it conflicting. As it’s your chance to make that first impression, it is critical that you give it your best shot.

Your CV Objective should be to :

Firstly think about the interviewer/organisation you are pitching it to and what their objectives are hiring for the position – what might they want…….

-They might want to know you have the skills that they need and have gained relevant experience using those skills
-That perhaps previous employers have benefited from you using those skills
-That you can demonstrate you understand what is required for their job

If you are meeting these objectives with your CV you should stand a great chance of getting called to interview.

The CV specifics

You have got less than a minute….

Most readers of CV’s are making an initial decision after skimming through the details; shortlist or reject. You need to highlight your key skills and how they will benefit the prospective employer.

Open Strong

The first paragraph is critical. Summarise your expertise and avoid clichés.

It’s a Marketing document not a life history – you need to be selective

It is tempting to include everything you have done but don’t. Keep it relevant to the job you are applying for highlighting and emphasizing what you have achieved as opposed to what you have been responsible for.

Get the running order right

Do not start with job experience that is not relevant, especially when changing employment sectors. If you have key accomplishments gained in other industries, put them prominently in accomplishments, right after the first paragraph of expertise.

Make sure it is easy to read

Do not make the type too small trying to pack it in, the days of the one-pager are gone, you have 2 – 3 pages to work with.

Get feedback/input from others

We are subjective by nature, get someone else to read it and provide you with feedback.

Make sure there are no typo’s

Surprisingly enough it is still happening, check it thoroughly for grammar and punctuation, it says something about you.

Do’s & don’ts

  • Do ensure all the basic contact details are included
  • Do be positive at all times
  • Do highlight keywords
  • Do be honest
  • Do keep your CV up to date
  • Do keep it concise
  • Don’t date your CV
  • Don’t attach references
  • Don’t mention political or religious affiliations
  • Don’t use unnecessary words
  • Don’t mention personal characteristics – marital status, age, height etc
  • Don’t mention salaries earned/required