HOW TO GRAB RECRUITER'S ATTENTION:
Tips for writing your best CV
A strong CV is your gateway to get a dream job. It helps you to get noticed by recruiters and employers as well as will help you to land plenty of interviews.
It is a document which gives the first impression on the person you are.
Although you can be flexible with your CV format-wise, there are still key sections which employers expect to see on your CV regardless. There is also information that you should not include, such as your full address, date of birth or marital status. They are simply a waste of valuable space.
This quick guide aims to inform you as to how the perfect CV should be crafted.
THE MUST HAVE SECTIONS IN YOUR CV
NAME AND CONTACT DETAILS
You should treat your name as the title of your CV. Under no circumstances do not use “CV” or “Curriculum vitae” as a title – it looks unprofessional.
Regarding the contact details, it is important to keep it updated because recruiters are going to use these details to get in touch with you! You should simply put your email address and phone number with a dedicated country code.
In this section, you may think about adding a LinkedIn profile, but only if it is updated.
Personal statement, also known as an objective, is one of the most important parts of your CV. It is a short paragraph which you put just underneath your name and contact details. It acts as an overview of who you are and what you have to offer to the prospective employer.
Personal objectives should match specifically the job that you are applying for, therefore it should emphasize the skills and qualities which you have to offer. It should roughly answer questions such as who you are, what you can offer to the company as well as what are your career plans. You should keep it concise; somewhere between 5 and 10 lines.
HINT: do not use the template and generic examples such as “hard working team player”. Keep your objective very personal and write something original to intrigue the recruiter.
Your employment history section acts as a showcase of your career experience. It should outline your previous jobs, internships and work experience.
When listing each position, it should be headlined with the job title, the employer, location as well as the dates that you worked and a line that summarizes the role. You should also include bullet points to showcase your main responsibilities, skills and accomplishments.
The important thing is to list your experience in reverse chronological order, which means that most recent jobs should be on top since they are most relevant for the employer. Recent roles should include more details as compared to the latest!
Similarly to the career experience, the education should be listed in the reverse chronological order. Include the name of the institution, location and dates you were there. You may also want to include qualifications and grades that you achieved.
OPTIONAL SECTIONS TO INCLUDE IN YOUR CV
There is a huge debate going on as to whether you should include your photo in the CV. The rule of thumb is to get photos off your CV unless you are asked to include one.
Yet, if you make a decision to include the photo, make sure to keep it professional as well as not stiff as an ID photo.
You should include your foreign languages especially if you are trying to land a language job. Include the language that you speak and add the level of proficiency. You can prove your skill by adding the level certificate that you achieved.
HOBBIES AND INTERESTS
This section may strongly boost your CV. Yet, the common mistake that candidates make is to include the hobbies that are irrelevant for the job which they are applying for. Hence, if for instance you are trying to get a job as a personal trainer, why not include your interests into the science of weightlifting? Try to avoid putting generic hobbies that are not tied up to the prospective job.
Yes, volunteer experience is nice to have. Yet remember not to include the experience which is outdated. According to the rule of thumb, the first thing a recruiter is going to notice is your education and paid work. Hence, do not squeeze a volunteering job if it means impoverishment of other more relevant sections of your CV.
Adding volunteer experience is especially a good idea if you have just graduated and have no work experience or when you have extra space to fill up in your CV. Let’s say that you are applying for a job as a journalist, then it’s good to attach the journalist experience in a university newspaper if you did not work in the professional field yet.
To well-craft the volunteering section, you must include the name of the organization, your position and responsibilities.
HOW TO FORMAT YOUR CV
Keep it short and simple: CV long between 1 and 3 pages of A4 format should be enough to tell your story without boring readers
Clear headings: each section must be introduced with crisp and bold heading that can be easily read
Keep the details clear: there should be a different font for heading and details, with details being put in smaller font than the heading
Eye-pleasing layout: make sure that your CV contains enough space and margin so it is easy to follow and pleasing for the eyes of a recruiter. Here, you have the option to choose creative (i.e. more colorful) or traditional (i.e. black and white) format
Saving format: it is best to deliver your CV to a recruiter in a PDF format since it assures that the format won’t change just like in a DOCX.