It might be a great job, you might be well-qualified for it, but if the first opportunity you get to put yourself in front of a new employer is through your CV, it must do its job. That might be the only chance you get to make an impression.
Recruitment companies often offer help with optimising or writing a CV, but it helps if your basic CV is pretty much ready to go.
Keep your CV to no longer than two sides of A4 paper, not including your cover letter.
Use black type, between size 10 to 12 points, and in a common typeface such as Arial or Times New Roman.
Keep the layout simple and clear. Use headings, and formatting – bold, italics, underlining and spacing – to make the information clear and easy to read.
Once the basics are done, always tweak and tailor your CV to the job you’re applying for. Read the job description – research the employer, too – and select the experience and skills that are most relevant. Always include:
· Your name and address
· Phone number
· Email address – a professional sounding one is best
Summarise yourself in a few sentences. You may mention some of your key strengths and attributes here, especially any that the role explicitly requires – expect to back these up in the main body of your CV, and to talk about them during an interview.
Beginning with your most recent/current position and working backwards, list your previous jobs (including different roles at the same employer).
For each role, you should include:
· Company or organisation’s name
· Your title in that role
· Length of employment (month and year)
· Your key responsibilities
· Highlight what you achieved or the impact you 'made in the role.
Like work experience above, beginning with the most recent(or current) one, list your formal education history, going back to secondary school, including:
· The name of the institution you studied at
· When you studied there
· The qualifications you achieved
These can be further strengths that enhance your work or education history. This is especially important if they are relevant to the role advertised.
Depending on the role, examples you might include could be:
· Specialist training, e.g. health and safety
· The ability to speak different languages
· Experience of software or equipment
· Awards or other achievements
· Links to online portfolios or blogs
Hobbies, passions and interests can be a great way to stand out from the crowd (and act as a talking point in an interview).
Add “References available on request” to the end of your CV and provide their contact details later.
If you’re looking for help with writing your CV, the ACS Staffing Solutions team are here to help! Contact us online or give us a call on 01604 704058.
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