We are sure you are all aware how crucial it is to have the ideal CV, it is, after all, a potential employer's first meeting of you but how do you go about writing it? What information should you put in and what should you leave out? We at AllBathJobs want to aid you in maximising your possibility of getting that ideal so here are tips for making the right first impression.
We know it's clear but a Curriculum Vitae (CV) should always be typed to give it the greatest clarity possible. It should also be well laid out. Consider how it looks on the page. There should be apparent headings and breaks between paragraphs. A prospective employer will likely look through lots of CVs for a job so they should be able to see the important information immediately before short listing it for a more thorough read through. A shoddily laid out CV which is not easy to read will probably end up in the trash.
A lot of employers want a CV to commence with a personal statement as it allows them to see straightaway what you are about. What should this include?
Make sure you give these questions real thought before you answer them as they are likely to be questioned at interview. Here's an example of the type of thing may say:
' I am bright, a conscientious worker and determined about any challenges I take on. My employmentto date has all been very customerfocused and I have found this to be very enjoyable. I have spent the last eight years in a sales environment and I find enjoyable the contact with different sorts of people this brings. I feel I am intelligent and would like the chance to take this further. During my time at Barney Ruddles Estate Agents I very much enjoyed learning as much as possible about the procedural and legal parts of the conveyancing process and felt that I absorbed it quickly. I am especially keen to take on a challenging role with opportunities to progress and train where possible. I am also extremely IT literate and very much take pleasure using computers as part of my working life.'
The next heading should be your education if it is especially relevant to the job for which you are applying. For example, if you have a degree in French and you are applying for a multilingual position then it is useful to state this first. However, if you are of the opinion that your education is not particularly important and you are applying on the value of your experience then it is worth considering putting your work history first.
Your education should be stated in reverse order with the most recent education done first. There is no need to go into lots detail here, simply state where you studied and what grades you were awarded. It is not vital to put the dates of study if you do not wish to as, under the Age Discrimination Law, you are not obliged to make any reference to your age and this includes dates from which your age may be discerned. Do not forget to include information of any other certificates you may have received which may be significant to the position.
Like education, it should be laid out in reverse order, the most recent or current employment at the top. You should give the name of the employer and the period of time you were employed (this need not be dates but you should state for how much time you were employed in that position). It is also useful to state where the employer was based, e.g. Bath. You should also clearly indicate what your job title was. Underneath explain briefly what your job role was and your main tasks. This should aid a potential employer determine whether your experience makes you suitable for their role. Try to be succinct and keep it to only relevant information.
It is not advisable to put your salary for each employment undertaken on your CV as this can cause an employer to make assumptions about your suitability for a role and make negotiating your salary, where applicable, harder. The same can also be said for putting your salary expectation on your CV.
It is not uncommon for people to put a little bit of personal information, such as hobbies, on their CV. You should keep this to a minimum. You should, however, state whether you have a driving licence and whether you own your own car etc.
Employers do not necessarily want to see photos on a CV. For most roles it is unnecessary to include a photo but if you want to it ought to be passport photo sized and professional in appearance.
It is vital that you make sure all spelling and punctuation are correct. Literacy is often highly valued to employers so use the 'Spell Check' facility on your computer.
Ask a friend or contact to read through your CV. Ask them to double check that it looks presentable and easy to read. They should also check your spelling and grammar.
When applying for a role you should incorporate a covering letter. This should indicate why you are applying for this job in particular and a small amount about the experience and/or skills you have which could be useful to them (avoid repeating too much from the CV itself).
Remember that it may not be 'one CV fits all', it is important spending a few moments reviewing your CV before each occasion you submit it to ensure it makes the best impact for each particular position. You may want to think about changing some information, particularly your personal statement, to suit the job description.