Writing a CV can be stressful, especially when you’re writing one for a professional position. Although there’s no such thing as a perfect CV, there are a few universal truths that make a CV effective. Your CV should tell a compelling story about your motivation to succeed in the job with your prospective employer.
Most CVs have common sections that you should always cover. These include personal contact details, education and qualifications, work history and experience, relevant skills to the job, your achievements, and references.
Presentation is important
The layout of a CV should be clean and well structured. It can be tempting to include fancy formatting, logos and pictures, but resist this urge! It may look nice, but the point of a CV is to display information about you in the clearest possible way. If you’re working with a recruiter this special formatting will often be removed anyway.
Tailor your CV to the role
When writing your CV it’s important to make sure you highlight your suitability for the role. Avoid clichés such as ‘hard working’ and ‘team player’ – every graduate will say this. The clues are in the job description so read the details carefully from start to finish. Take notes and highlight every requirement and skill that you can tick off in the wording of your CV. When it comes to the skills that you don’t have experience in, try and fill in the blanks by adapting the skills that you do.
Highlight your skills
Don’t forget to mention key skills that help you stand out from all the recent graduates. These could include communication skills, technical and digital skills, team working, and organizational skills. These skills can come from anywhere so don’t hesitate to reference anything you did during university, volunteer experience, or work.
Make the most of experience and interests
Make the most of the experience you’ve gained – whether from university, volunteering, or work. Highlight the experiences that demonstrate the skills you’ve gained that your potential employer is looking for. Describe any examples of positions of responsibility, working in a team, or anything that shows that you’re an ambitious individual.
Remember that working with a recruiter can help get a foot in the door of many industries – plus they’ll help you tailor your CV. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us when you hit the job market!
Amanda Masuku, Eden Scott