In a very competitive London job market, it is important to take time to understand how to make sure your CV is going to stand out from other job applicants.
Your CV is the most powerful tool used to represent your skills and experience to potential employers who don’t know you. It is therefore essential that you put time and effort into getting it right so that it stands out from the many other applicants.
Not only does a CV need to be concise and summarise your education and work experience, it should explain clearly who you are and what direction you wish to take your career. It should also highlight relevant skills and experience and use words which are relevant to the sector you are working on.
Generally a CV should not be longer than 2 pages. It should be clear, honest and well written, paying attention to good use of the English language and clear concise formatting. Using bullet-points, clear headers and
Your CV should include the following criteria
1. Personal Details
This would include full name, Address, Contact details ( daytime & evening telephone numbers and
email contact details), Nationality and / or Work permit/Visa Status
2. Career summary & objectives
Many of our clients view this as one of the most important elements of a CV.
This is generally a paragraph which will give your application direction and draw together you key personal attributes.
For example, if you are looking to work within a specific sector, in which you have no experience, this paragraph should give you the opportunity to state this and the reasons why.
If you have experience within a certain sector and are looking to build on that, this may be the opportunity to summarise this.
If you have specific skills / achievements which could potentially give you the edge in a job application, over other applicants, then this could be the place to summarise it.
3. Key Achievements
Many applicants choose to separate key achievements from the career summary. This is a matter of choice but shouldn’t be too long and should be clear and concise.
It should be laid out in a format which is clear.
Here you should highlight any relevant information demonstrating your suitability for the position you are applying for.
4. Education & Training summary
This should include
- your academic qualifications
– any relevant recent training or industry / skills events that you have attended
– professional memberships/ affiliations and related qualifications
5. Employment History
This should commence with your most recent job and work backwards.
Dates should be clear and any gaps should be explained. It should include a summary of
What your role was and what your tasks were like on day to day basis. Industry knowledge,
Experience is important and you should include buzzwords which relate to the sector you
6. Technical skills
This should be a brief summary of any IT/ technical/ linguistic skills which are relevant to the current job market
7. Personal Interests
This should be brief. Many employers like to see external interests, as some of these may require skills which are needed for specific jobs
Common errors / Faults
Here is a short list of the most common reason for CVs being rejected by clients:
- No clear relevant experience (no buzzwords or related vocabulary
- CV too jumpy / too many gaps which are unexplained
- Sloppy spelling mistakes
- Poor written English
- CV is too long (more than 2 pages)
- Descriptions of jobs are too brief: no attention to detail,
- Poor formatting : no bullet-points or spacing , too wordy and difficult to skim read when there are 50 other applicants
- Poor grammar: tenses change from present to past, singular to plural
- CV is written in the 3rd person: a pet hate of many clients.
- Lack of summary statement: no clear direction