Advanced search

CV Tips

(6 Posts)
ChangesAt30 Tue 16-Jul-19 08:47:15

Anyone give me any tips for making my CV stand out please? If you recruit as part of your job, what do you look for?

I'm desperately looking for a new job but, despite applying for lots, have never even been offered an interview.

I know the job market is hard now but I'm feeling so disheartened 😕


maxelly Tue 16-Jul-19 11:05:37

Hello, I do some recruiting as part of my role albeit mainly using application forms these days rather than CVs. The things I like in a CV are quite basic really. To be honest anyone obviously trying too hard to 'stand out' usually makes me suspicious/irritated, I just want to establish your suitability for the role as easily/quickly as possible. So things like:

-Not too long, 2 sides of A4 ideally (but go with the standard in your industry, in some areas a longer CV is expected)

-Nicely laid and spaced out so it is easy to read, no fancy borders or twirly fonts or graphics or anything. I want to be able to scan it and quickly pick up the key points.

-Has all the info I need including the crucial areas - candidates's contact details, employment history, key skills/knowledge/experience, qualifications and training. Doesn't have extraneous info I don't need. I don't mind a (very) short section on personal interests but personally I don't really look at that bit and certainly don't particularly care if you are into parasailing or knitting replicas of the Taj Mahal or have 8 ferrets or whatever, if anything too much of that is likely to put me off - although some recruiters do like that part of the CV so you can't really win either way confused

-Properly proof read (spelling and grammar errors a big no no), uses clear plain English with minimal jargon and acronyms (I don't mind some which make sense within the context of the industry/role you are applying for (but if I don't understand what you are talking about I can't give you credit for it so if in doubt don't use it, or spell out the acronym properly).

-A nice succinct cover letter to go with the CV outlining why you are suitable for the role, plus most people start their CV with a short 'summary' or 'personal statement' which draws out their most important experiences, achievements, personal qualities etc. It's important to tailor these bits to each role you are applying for so as to tick the particular 'boxes' for that role, drop in any buzzwords or cover things they mention in the advert or job spec etc. You might want to also tweak your employment history/skills/training part of the CV for each role to draw out particularly relevant parts to the job you are applying for. If there are contact details for the recruiter on the advert it can help to give them a call beforehand and gently pump them as to what in particular they are looking for (it's not always obvious from the advert) and then make sure you include that on your CV.

There are various services online or through the job centre etc where someone will look at your CV for you and suggest improvements, maybe worth getting someone else's eyes on it? When it is your own CV it can be hard to see the wood for the trees! Good luck...

Annie1977 Wed 17-Jul-19 20:21:21

Hello. I had fairly extensive careers training at the university I attended and the advice they gave me has always stuck with me and seems to have paid off.

Always tailor your cv to each job, don’t use a generic one
Use the same language the employer uses in their marketing / job description / website
Write a good cover letting with a personalised response for each job. Give clear examples of how you meet criteria, don’t just say you have a particular skill.

Good luck x

redexpat Wed 17-Jul-19 21:00:47

-Think like a journalist - most important is at the top and should be big like a headline.
-Include accurate contact info!
-A personal profile can be a good way to tailor a cv. It should tell them who you are, what you can offer and which direction you want to head in.
-Start with the most recent, so employment history first, then education (if youre doing a chronological cv)
-Give concrete examples of what you did in each post. These can be in bullet form. If using bullets start each sentence with an active verb eg coordinated, implemented. Think like a journalist and put the most relevant points near the top. Use words from the job spec that youre applying for.
-Name the specialist software youre familiar with.
-name industry specific methods you are familiar with.
- make it look nice. Headings, a clear font (I like calibri) and you can use colour too.
-interests/hobbies can add a bit of personality but dont use too much space on it.
- use the same formatting/colour on your application. It looks professional and thought out.

There are a lot of templates online. look very pretty but arent that easy to edit. If youre using word then have a look at their templates - I like the modern student one.

redexpat Wed 17-Jul-19 21:14:45

Heres what not to do

ChangesAt30 Thu 18-Jul-19 13:29:42

Thank you all for your advice! It's much appreciated 

@redexpat I think what you've mentioned there about implemented/co-ordinated is what's missing from mine. I seem to list what I do as part of my role but not what I've actually achieved. I need to change that for sure!

Join the discussion

Registering is free, quick, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Get started »