CV Writing Guide

Our CV Writing Guide

We know that a bad CV can prevent you from getting an interview. The difference between good and bad is a little extra time spent in preparation. To help you if you are in the middle of redrafting or even creating a new CV, we have created this handy CV Writing Guide.

A CV isn’t supposed to be a work of art, nor is it the place for gimmicks. As such, you need to regard your CV as the way to get an interview. Once you have your interview, your CV has done its job and your personality can take over.

The “Right” Way

Unfortunately, there isn’t the “one” way that is right when writing a CV. But, there are many places that can negatively affect the perception of the reader. So, we have come up with some simple rules to help you out:

  1. Make your CV easy to read. Your potential employer will be 50-100 CVs, keeping it concise with a clear layout will ensure that all of your hard work is read.
  2. Avoid lengthy paragraphs. A CV should arouse interest and not give every detail. Extra details should be filled during the interview stage.
  3. There is no set length for a CV. But, a general rule of thumb is that after 3 pages’ people have a tendency to become bored. So keep it short and concise.
  4. Try to use a good standard of English, avoiding a conversational tone, slang or jargon. If you struggle with this get someone with a good command of English to proofread your CV.

Presentation Is Important

The way that your CV looks is just as important as how it reads. If it is unorganised or has too much information then it becomes difficult to read. Resulting in your CV going to the bottom of the pile. There are many tips on CV presentation, here are 5 key points that we recommend:

  1. Bold key terms like your name, date, name of employers, and job titles.
  2. Carefully think about your layout. Use subtitles so the reader knows what information is next and leave plenty of space in between paragraphs. Bullet pointing key information is important as well.
  3. Use a professional font, it makes it easier to read!
  4. Include a brief customised letter with every CV. It should highlight a few key relevant skills and make the reader want to read more.
  5. Do not do the following: date a CV, attach you photo or enclose a salary (unless requested).

Employment History

Using some of the tips above, we’ll give you an example of what your employment history could look like. You want to list employment in reverse chronological order, ensuring that the most recent is first.

Remember to include any achievements because this adds extra value. They are also an opportunity to really sell yourself- remember to use facts and statistics to support what you write.

Example:

Jan 2016-Present             ABC Ltd                Assistant Manager

  • Responsibility
  • Achievement

Feb 2016-2016                   FGH Ltd                Assistant manager

  • Duty
  • Accomplishment

For job-seekers that are looking for their first opportunity, try to include as much relevant experience as possible. This can include vocational training and extracurricular commitments e.g. being a trainer for a local football club. It will show that you have valuable transferable skills. Which will help if you do not have much work experience under your belt.

Try to not include reasons as to why you have left previous roles, as the reader may interpret this a negativly. But, we advise that you explain any long-term gaps in your work history.

Extracurricular Activities

Although you want to keep this section short, we do encourage that you include your hobbie. As they are a way to showcase your personality on your CV. Think about any interests that have a direct bearing on your suitability for the role or that are a little unique – remember that you want your CV to stand out from the crowd.

References

There is no need to include full references in your CV, as they tend to be requested by the employer after your interview, Simply put ‘References Available On Request’ at the end of your CV.


We hope you have found our CV writing guide helpful, remember that there is no set way to write your CV. However careful planning is the key to success, if you are looking for additional support don’t hesitate in contacting us today on 0116 262 3733.

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