How to write a CV (Curriculum Vitae)
A stand out CV is essential when looking for work, especially when there are a high number of candidates applying for the same job. Knowing how to create a CV to sell yourself can be the deciding factor between securing an interview or not.
When creating your CV it is vital that the hiring manager can scan through your CV and understand it quickly. Therefore, it needs to read well, it needs to be neat and most importantly it needs to be clear and understandable.
Below provides information for a basic outline of what a CV should include and look like:
Key information required on your CV
It may sound obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people forget to include their name, email address, contact phone number and home address. Make sure these are clearly marked at the top of your CV.
List your education and further qualifications if applicable. This section should also include those qualifications you are currently studying for.
A personal statement is a good opportunity for you to tell the hiring manager why you are applying and why you are right for the role. Without going into too much detail you want to be able to demonstrate what skills you have that will appeal to the hiring manager.
List all of the previous work experience you have in the field you are applying for. Work history should be listed with your most recent experiences first and should include dates of employment, job title and the company you worked for. When listing your duties it is important that you highlight the key responsibilities at the top, this is because hiring managers will scan through CV’s and many will only read the first few lines of any job.
Your key achievements should be highlighted for each job either before or after your work experience. Key achievements are an excellent opportunity for you to highlight what you have done in the past, which may have saved the company time and/or money in some capacity. Think about what you have changed, implemented or improved in your previous roles, which has resulted in some kind of value add to the company. What was your ‘Return on Investment’?
Personal Achievements, Hobbies and Interests
List all of your personal achievements, hobbies and interests that will reflect you as a person.
If you have gaps in your CV where you have not worked (travelling, sickness, maternity leave etc.), please note this down as it is important to cover these breaks. Gaps in your CV with no explanation could impact your chances of getting an interview request.
How to present your CV
When presenting your CV it needs to be a true reflection of who you are. Therefore, it needs to look professional and read well to potential employers and recruiters.
- Try to keep your CV to a maximum of 4 pages.
- Identify a professional font for your CV. Once chosen, the font needs to be a suitable size for others to read.
- Clearly layout your CV with sufficient spacing and clear section headings. Consider using underline or bold for different headings.
- Make sure you spell check your CV and get someone to proof read it once it is completed.