How to Write a Great CV

We are all aware that employers who are currently recruiting, receive a huge number of CVs for every vacancy.  So you would think that applicants would be trying their best to submit clear and effective CVs. However, speaking to clients, this is not the case at all. Recruiting organisations have been surprised by the low quality CVs they have received, they are difficult to read, the layout is confusing, there are spelling errors and some are four pages long!

The low standard of CVs may be in part because there are thousands of people in the job market for the first time. Graduate unemployment is high, as well as former public sector workers who perhaps have not applied for jobs externally for many years. For those who are job hunting, it is essential that they have a good, clear, effective CV, and it is highly recommended that they get some expert help and advice.

As a start here are five tips on producing a CV which will get you through the first round of screening-

1.       Relevance – make sure that everything you put on your CV is relevant for the job you are applying for. This is particularly important for those who have had a long and/or varied career. Keep the job you are applying for in mind, and keep your CV relevant

2.       Concise – keep your CV to two pages at the most.  If you think you have more than this to go in, please review all the material and check for relevance (point one above), then put all the information into short, bullet points. Go through word by word, and ask yourself, “Is this really necessary?”. This will make the CV easier to review, and the person sifting through a huge pile will be able to easily pick out the key words they are looking for

3.       Spelling and grammar – make sure that the spelling and grammar is correct throughout the CV, get someone to double check your work before submitting your application

4.       Address to the correct person – find out the name of the person dealing with the recruitment for this job and make sure their name is spelled correctly on your envelope

5.       Covering letter - send a covering letter with every application. You can use a standard format of your own for this, the details of which can be changed for each specific job. The letter should include a paragraph explaining why you are interested in this job and what experience and skills you can bring to the role