When it comes to working on a CV that recruiters will love it’s hard to know where to begin. There are so many different articles online that suggest all sorts of best practices, but which ones are actually right? Do you need to use an image? Should you use a creative design? Does it need to longer than two pages? To be honest, it’s a bit of a minefield. To help make things easier, I have put together a guide to the 6 things every CV needs to have in order for it to land you an interview for your dream job:
A Personal Statement
Starting your CV off with a good strong personal statement is a good way to make a great first impression. This is often the first thing recruiters will read, so it needs to give them a good idea about who you are, without taking up too much of their time. Include what your current position is, what you’re looking for and a few of your key skills to really stand out.
Whilst it is important to keep it brief, your education history will give recruiters a good idea of what you were doing before you were employed. If your education is relevant to the position you’re applying to, it may be worth going into more detail, but often all they’re looking for is to see the level of education you have reached.
This is the most important part of any CV as it gives recruiters an overview of your experience and a chance to see whether or not you’re suitable for the role. If you’ve had many positions it may not be necessary to list everything, but be sure to explain any gaps in employment you may have had.
Hobbies and Interests
It is often said that this is one of the least important sections on a CV, but it gives the person reading your CV a chance to see what you’re like outside of work. Jobs are now focusing on workplace culture, and they need to see if you’d be a fit for the office. Recruiters don’t want someone who is only going to be tied to their job and instead will be looking for people who know how to have a good work-life balance. List what you like to do outside of work and remember, keep it clean! They don’t need to know that you spend every Saturday at clubs and bars. Don’t be afraid to tell them about your blog or YouTube channel, but don’t be surprised if they actually check it out.
Although these skills may be stated when you mention your employment history, it’s important for you to highlight your key areas of expertise. Ideally, this should come after your personal statement and often doesn’t need to be more than a couple of words summarizing your best skills. Include skills those team player and management skills, you can also find a few lists with good examples of skills to give you a few ideas. But please don’t add any skills that you don’t actually have.
At Least Two References
Some say that including references on a CV isn’t necessary, however, it saves the recruiter a job of getting in touch to find their contact details afterward – you can always ask the recruiter their reference preferences. One of your references should be your most recent employer or manager, you can also use a coworker, previous employer, former teacher/professor, and even your landlord.
Are you looking for a new job or career change? Let me know if you have any other tips for a CV or résumé!