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How To Write a Killer CV and Get Hired

How To Write a Killer CV and Get Hired

Your CV is the single most important document that any job hunter can have.

Done correctly, it will open the door to a million opportunities.

Done incorrectly, it will put off potential employers and ensure you will only work for companies that can’t recruit anyone else. 

 

With these simple tips, I am going to help you to understand what clients and agencies are looking for in your CV. After reading this blog, you’ll be equipped to write a CV that will give you the opportunities that you deserve and ultimately help you secure the best jobs in the best companies. 

 

Whilst you create your CV, you should remember that it has one job, and that is to get you an interview.  

 

#1 Let's talk about length!

When it comes to CVs, bigger is never better.

 

A typical job will receive a minimum of 15 applications, especially if the company is a more favourable place to work. If each of these CVs were 6 pages long, a prospective employer would have to read over 90 pages.

Now, I read a lot of CVs and I can tell you they are not always the most interesting reads!

 

Your potential employer will spend just a few seconds deciding if a profile is worth reading. If it is - they will spend 45 seconds reading the first page, 30 seconds on the second page and 10 seconds on the 3rd page.

Your CV needs to look beautiful, be very clear, simply laid out and be really easy to read, ideally 2 pages long.

 

#2 Format.  

Choose a clear font, Arial or Tahoma. Please no Comic Sans or Times New Roman!

 

Consider having an 'F Pattern' to your profile. 

Surveys show that the F pattern scores highly on initial scanning over classic 'left to right' alignment.

  • First, start with your Name – centre It – and don’t make it too large. 
  • Beneath this add your contact details (don’t write 'telephone: 078**** etc.' just write the number).
  • Also, include your email and address. You'd be surprised by the number of people who forget this! 

 

#3 Next up - your profile.  

Now, this is a personal statement, and it is vital for any first-class CV.

 

This should be about 4-5 lines talking about what you do, where you have come from and where you are going. Here is where you can inject a little personality and talk about the traits that make you amazing!

This is a part of your CV that will change over time, so make sure you keep this updated.

 

#4 Photo. 

The jury is out on these…

 

There is no rule on if they are a good thing or a bad thing, it really is down to you. What I can say with certainty is that if you include a picture, make sure it is a good, professional one. Please don't include the selfie you took with a mate on a night out or one you took on the beach in Zante! It needs to be professional and make sure it matches the photo on your LinkedIn profile. 

 

A slight aside here: LinkedIn will negatively score your profile if you do not have a photo, meaning you come at the bottom of search results!  

 

#5 Your experience.  

This is your work history from the most recent job backwards.

 

In one line write:

- the date from and to

- the company you worked for

- the job title you held

 

Beneath this tell us:

- what your job was

- what you were doing a

- what you achieved

 

Do use some bullet points, but make sure you are showing us the traits and characteristics that make you a great candidate. Then continue to tell us about your previous jobs. 

 

The trick here is the older the job (I’d argue against anything that is more than 10 years old), the less relevant it isThe less relevant it is, the less we need to write about it, unless we what to exhibit some of our traits (leadership, communication, organisational skills.)  

 

#6 End of your CV  

You then need to show a technical skills summary for us to see what level you are at. It is also really important that you know these technologies well, as you will be asked questions about them.

 

 

#7 Interests  

This is about creating some rapport with your interviewer.

 

This section will make your CV memorable and help you to stand out. But don't get carried away! It should be a few lines at most. We are simply looking for something to peak interest and at this stage, we just want hte client to be interested enough to meet you.   

 

And there you have it. You’re ready to write your Killer CV!

 

Have a look at our Candidate Toolkit for access to an easy-to-follow CV Template and more Resume Writing Tips.

 

If you need more tailored guidance, reach out to the Initi8 team for a chat and one of our lovely members will be more than happy to help!

Author

Claire

Date

20 September 2022