HOW TO WRITE A STELLAR RESUME/CV: 9 SIMPLE TIPS TO GET HIRED!
You’re on the hunt for a new job — maybe you just want a change, or maybe you’ve just moved to a new city and need work! No matter what your situation, you’ve come to the right place! In the digital age some things have changed when it comes to CVs, so we’ve talked to the experts to get the down low on what should and shouldn’t be included.
1. Keep it short & sweet
For most job applications a CV should be one to two pages (however one is better). Recruiters and employers on average spend 7–10 seconds looking at one CV, so you have a better chance of avoiding the NO pile when you don’t tell them your entire life story. Keep it concise, to the point and avoid unnecessary details until you get the interview.
2. Tailor it
We’ve all done it! Sent the same CV out to a ton of employers to save time and energy, but trust us, in the end this will only hurt your chances. Take some time to properly look at the job description and tailor your CV for each role. Researching the company is key and thoroughly read through the description of the job to work out exactly which skills you should highlight. They will notice and appreciate the extra effort.
3. Add a Personal Statement
Don’t make any assumptions that the employer or recruiter will connect the dots and see how your work experience will translate to their position. By including a short personal statement to explain both what you’re looking for for and why you are the best candidate can set you apart from the rest. This should also be reflected in your cover letter.
4. Mind the Gaps
Sure, no one is working all the time but when employers see gaps in your CV, it makes them suspicious and they may not give you a chance. If you do have big gaps in your work timeline, don’t worry, you can put a positive spin on it! Did you volunteer, take up a course, or develop some soft skills? If so, don’t be shy, talk about it!
5. Keep it Current
It’s important to keep your CV updated whether you’re looking for a job or not. Every time something noteworthy or significant happens in your career, record it so it doesn’t get forgotten.
6. Be Honest
Blatant lies on your CV can land you in serious trouble when it comes to employers checking up on your references and background. The last thing you want to happen is to start work and then get fired from your new job because of lying. You may also be questioned on something you have claimed to know during the interview. And that can be very uncomfortable and awkward.
7. Always Double-Check!
It’s only human to make mistakes but employers don’t always see eye to eye and that can make you look really bad. You’ve had the time to check, so why didn’t you? Chances are you’re competing with many other applicants, you don’t need an error on your CV taking you out of the race before you even get started! Use a spellchecker and ask a friend (or 2!) to proofread what you’ve written.
8. Add / Do the Maths
Putting the numbers to your achievement is always a good thing, and makes it easier to sell yourself. When describing your work history, put as much detail in as possible. Rather than saying, “I increased sales,” say, “I increased sales by 50% over a 3 month period.” Better, right? Numbers and facts are great to reference but remember be honest!
9. Keyword Friendly
Keywords are king. If you’ve uploaded your CV to a site, recruiters use keywords to search you from other applicants. Jobs titles and buzzwords help search engines pick you out from the crowd. For example: A marketing applicant should mention digital marketing, direct to customer marketing, or SEO (Search Engine Optimization). If you’re not sure, look online and find other words that are commonly mentioned in your field when you input your job title.
10. Make it look good
This is the first impression the company gets of you, so you’d better make it good! Take the time to organize it and use some graphic design techniques. A good tip is to leave plenty of white-space around text and between categories to make the layout easy on the eye.