10 Tips for CV Success
10 Tips for CV Success
Preparing your CV can be a real challenge, particularly if it has been a long time since you last reviewed it. Our 10 tips for CV Success will help get you on the right road to ensuring your CV secures you an interview.
1. Tailor it for the role you’re applying for
Generic CVs just don’t get noticed. Take a look at the role your applying for and ask yourself whether your CV is relevant to the role. Have you made sure that the key attributes and experiences they are looking for stand out on your CV? It’s best to have a master copy and then tailor your CV where needed to apply for differing roles in differing industries. It could make the difference!
2. Avoid the temptation to ‘jazz it up’
Unless you’re applying for roles in the creative industries; there is little point adding images, colours or a fancy design to your CV. These only distract the reader and they might miss the key information.
3. Be clear and concise
Avoid lengthy text, it can be off-putting to the reader as they don’t want to scan through paragraphs of copy to find the key information. Keep it clear and concise with plenty of white space, and stick to standard fonts such as Arial, Calibri or Times New Roman to ensure your CV is clear to read. Bullet points are your friend here!
4. Don’t worry about the ‘2-page rule’
Whilst being clear and concise is most definitely key, don’t worry if your CV runs over the recommended 2 pages. If you’ve got more to say, then say it! As long as the information is relevant, then include it, just make sure it’s succinct and you haven’t made it unnecessarily longwinded.
5. Use positive language
Use language that is positive and confident, avoiding negativity at all costs. For example:
‘Had to implement a new system for….’
‘Identified and implemented a key new system for…’
The second statement makes it sound like you enjoyed the responsibility and achievement; whereas the first sentence makes it sound like you didn’t really want to do it at all!
6. Include a personal statement
Don’t assume that the reader knows you and knows what you’re about. Include a personal statement or profile at the beginning to summarise your professional identity.
7. Summarise your key skills & achievements
Again, bullet points are key here, don’t make the reader trawl through your work history and education to find out your key skills and achievements – instead, list them at the beginning (ensuring they are relevant to the role you’re applying for) and make the reader want to know more!
Think about what you have delivered outside of your day to day activities. What are you particularly proud of? Which projects were you involved in that had a positive impact on the business?
Fundamentally, demonstrate to the reader that you are prepared to go the ‘extra mile’ and are continually progressing and building on your knowledge and experience.
8. Include a brief company overview
It’s not essential, but if you work for a company that are not a well-known brand or household name, then there is a strong possibility that the reader will not have heard of them. Including a brief overview of who the company are and what industry they work within before your job information could help the reader to understand your current role more completely.
9. Check it and then check it again!
Spelling and grammar are important – make sure you proof read your CV several times (and if it’s possible, get others to as well). Ensure your CV reads well and has correct spelling, punctuation and grammar throughout.
10. Stick to the format!
Taking all the other points into account, you should now be in a position to format your CV. Although there is no set formula for how a CV is structured, recruiters will expect you to follow a rough format as below:
- Personal information (name, address, phone number and email address)
- Personal statement or profile (no more than a paragraph)
- A summary of key skills
- Employment history (starting with most recent and working your way back)
- Education (again, starting with most recent and working your way back)
- Hobbies and interests (optional; however, it gives an employer a rounded overview and perhaps a more personal discussion point at interview)
FryerMiles is an Accountancy and Finance recruitment specialist formed by a team of recruiters with 30+ years’ combined experience within the industry.
We pride ourselves on being a team that works hard to get to know and understand our clients and candidates. Investing our time to make sure we have the best candidates means that we get the right people in the right roles. To contact us please click here