To bag yourself an interview you’ll need to make it through the initial CV screening. It goes without saying that this is highly competitive so here are a few key CV tips to help yours stand out.
Check for spelling and grammar.
This might sound obvious, but it’s always worth repeating – but you send your CV to us (or to any hiring managers!), make sure to double- and triple-check your spelling and grammar throughout your CV. It’s also a good idea to a second pair of eyes on it – a friend or family member can go over it quickly and might find something you’ve missed.
Tailor the CV for each job.
Make sure you tick as many of the boxes, as stated on the advert or job specification, as possible and match what they’re looking for with your experience in the content of your CV. If your work experience doesn’t match all the requirements, then make sure to include any educational or extracurricular experience you have that is relevant, or any personal projects that can reflect your enthusiasm for the industry.
Present the information clearly.
Use basic fonts that are easy to read (such as Calibri), include plenty of white space and title each section clearly. Set out the information in a logical structure, with the most up-to-date information at the start. However, don’t include lots of different colours and images – this will make your CV look unprofessional and stand out for the wrong reasons.
A CV isn’t a novel (or even a short story); keep it to no more than 2 sides of A4, and don’t ramble. Keep your personal statement brief and to the point. Make sure you cover the essence of the jobs you’ve had and highlight achievements, but don’t explain every single thing you did. The employer will be able to ask you questions at interview – the goal with a CV is to generate the employer’s interest to meet you.
Make sure it is relevant and up-to-date.
When an employer is looking through CVs, they want to find the most recent information quickly and easily. Don’t bury that information halfway down the page as they are likely to lose interest. Also, make sure you constantly update your CV with relevant achievements and activities to convince hirers that you are someone they should meet.
Overstating your case isn’t worth the risk. It is one thing to emphasise achievements but stick to the facts and if there are any gaps, make sure you show that you’re willing to learn and/or have transferable skills that will enable you to succeed. Getting caught in a lie will have major implications, so it really isn’t worth it.
Remember that your CV is a sales document to get yourself an interview, these CV tips will give you a start but our consultants can give you one on one advice to take your applications to the next level.