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Writing the Perfect CV

With your job search in full swing, you're going to need an up-to-date, well-written CV to get those invites to interviews flowing in! Here are some CV writing dos and don'ts!

You never know when that ideal job will present itself, so be prepared and stand out from the rest. Here are a few CV writing tips to help your CV be noticed...

How?
Think of your favourite TV advert and what draws you in, then think just how much creativity your CV could use. It’s your personal advert and the gateway to your dream job! Get noticed for all the right reasons; your talents, potential and desire for success…

Whether you are applying directly or using a professional recruiter to assist you, ‘dress your CV to impress’! It's important to match your skills, knowledge and experience with the job specification for the role your applying for, whilst still coming across as an interesting as a candidate to the recruiter! 

Prioritise your information to catch attention, including evidence of what you offer. Stretch yourself in terms of the way you write and the words you use. A CV has its own grammar not necessarily using sentences and paragraphs. Imagine how a professional recruiter would compose a concise profile about you; add an attractive yet simplistic style, and you will be spot on track.

Avoid:

  • Boxes, graphics and templates
  • Photos (unless you are a performer) 
  • The use of fancy fonts (Tahoma and Verdana are perfect)
  • Your CV being longer than 2/3 pages
  • Creating a believable web of deceit, be totally honest
  • One size does not fit all, tailor your CV regularly
  • Using your ‘teenage’ email address that used to be funny
  • Stating your date of birth - focus on your ability

Ensure you:

  • Take time to create a CV that stands out and add a covering letter
  • Use keywords as often software is used to identify and shortlist CVs
  • Back up factual qualifications, skills and experience with examples
  • Be succinct, making sure your CV is current as well as relevant
  • Demonstrate integrity, commitment and desire
  • Start with your most recent role first, accounting for any gaps
  • Are accurate, proof reading and testing on your friends
  • Use 10 point size to create space

Before you start writing your new and improved CV, pause. Take out a clean sheet of paper, think and then scribble all those things you would like your new employer to know about you. Refrain from the norm, do not say you are enthusiastic, work well in a team, like people and are kind to animals! Think about how you portray these messages in a refreshing, compelling, yet professional manner. A snapshot of your working day is always an interesting way to back up your skills, strengths and experience.

Recruitment Agencies will not charge you for CV advice and as they are also representing you, they are great sounding boards for evaluating your CV. 

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