The importance of Having a Professional CV

Today’s job market is really competitive with thousands of people either looking for work or looking to change roles. It is therefore so easy for employers and recruiters to instantly disregard a poor CV.

We need to think of our CV as the most potentially lucrative and most important piece of marketing material we will ever create.

Having a professionally written CV is more likely to get us through the door of an interview room, where we then can start to discuss how we can add value to a potential employer.

Note what was written there, ‘how we can add value’, and not just a list of what we have done!

The Impact of Your CV

We will only be interviewed depending on the strength of our CV and believe it or not, on the strength of the first 15 seconds of reading our CV.

In the first few seconds an employer will be interested in knowing who we are, what value we bring bring to their company and whether they think we may be able to fit their role.

Unless we’re applying for a role as an Armpit Sniffer, we need to be mindful of the competition we are up against.

Yes, you read correctly, there is such a job! – Armpit sniffers work for deodorant companies and spend their days in a hot room sniffing up to 60 armpits an hour to determine the effectiveness of deodorant and then follow up with a report! (I think there will be less competition for that role!)

What a Great CV Should Include

We cannot do anything about the skills we may not have. The focus therefore has to be on what skills and experience we can bring to a position.

We can make sure that these skills are presented well. Correct grammar and spelling is important too. According to a previous nationwide survey of recruitment professionals carried out by the Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC), 47% said that out of all the CVs they had seen, over half contained errors both in the areas of spelling and grammar!

Top Tips on Writing A Great CV

If you do wish to write you own CV then here are some tips on how to write a great CV:

  • Use Calibri font, it is much preferred
  • Font size of no less than 10 and no more than 11
  • Have clear headings in relation to your skills, experience, training and previous work experience
  • If you find it difficult to write about yourself, try and imagine you are describing someone the same as you. Don’t forget that the employer has not yet met you and therefore this is an opportunity to really sell yourself under your ‘Personal Profile’
  • Try and avoid overused statements such as I am hardworking or I am self-motivated. You can get that message across in your CV, for example ‘I looked after the office whilst the boss was out on the road’ etc
  • Ask others for feedback. Preferably those with an appropriate background as your favourite Uncle Joe, the village plasterer, will always think it is great!
  • Try and think how you can bring value to the company, include skills that you think are transferable.
  • Your career history should always be listed in chronological order starting with you most current position, working backwards.
  • Be brief but cover the main important points you want them to see i.e. avoid writing as if it is a story – if you write reports, then no need to advise that you get your pen out and log onto your computer (believe me I have seen it) ‘Responsible for producing reports’ will be just fine.
  • We all love our pets but the number of dogs we walk or rabbits we breed probably is of no interest to someone looking for a Doctor or Office Worker.
  • We also don’t need to advertise our age, it’s irrelevant, the same applies to the number of children we have produced, this should not be a deciding factor as to whether we are more competent in a role.
  • Limit your CV to a maximum of 2 pages, unless the role you are applying for requires that sort of detail.
  • Medical issues, no need to declare prior to being offered a role unless you need adjustments making for your interview i.e. you are on crutches and the interview is on the 5th floor and there are no lifts! You also should not be asked about any medical conditions until you have accepted a role. It is now against the law if the question is to decide on your suitability of carrying out the role.
  • If applying for a variety of different jobs, one CV does not fit all! Tailor your CV to each different role.
  • Finally, unless it is an absolute necessity, write about the last 10 years and be very brief on roles held past this date. We know we are proud of our car washing and babysitting in 1977 but really? Is this going to get you the job?

How We Can Help

If you are looking for help writing a great CV then please feel free to give me a call on 07553 362150 or complete the form below and I will call you!