Is your CV getting you interviews? If not, then it’s not doing it’s job! You need to know what to put on a CV so it will stand out from the rest.
Overall, here’s what to put on a CV:
- Summarise your CV in 2 pages
People have worked 20 years in some industries and can still get their work history on 2 pages.
- Professional photos
If you want to add in a photo it must be professional or it can detract.
- Use phrases instead of sentences
The only section you should have full sentences is in your career objectives. The rest will be bullet points or phrases.
Now that you have a big picture of how your CV should look there is a specific order of what to include:
The items you need to include should be listed in the following order:
- Name section
Include your name and contact details. No gender, age or ethnicity is needed.
- Career objectives
Discuss what you really want to achieve in your career and how it relates to the job you are applying for. This should be covered in 2 sentences or 3 lines.
- Skills and work experience
List your experience in reverse chronological order with the most recent experience you have had up top with the most detail in it. Include the role and what exactly you achieved in that role?
Start with your most recent education up top. If you have any awards you received at uni then include them.
- Skills and attributes
What are you good at, what have you learned, what are your strengths and what have you developed through university and your work experience?
- Memberships and affiliations
Only include this section if you have memberships that back up the skills you would need for the job you are applying for.
Show that you have interests outside of study. What you list here should show you are fun and approachable and can even be a conversation starter in your interview.
Write that your referees are available on request. If a company is interested in you they will call you to get your referees. This will help you know where you are in the process with them. You can call your referees to let them know to expect a call and let them know more about the role you are applying for.
Check out this video to understand how all the pieces of your CV fit together.
In summary, keep your CV simple and to the point and limit it to two pages. This will boost your chances of it being placed in the “final pile”.