On average, each advertised job receives around 118 applications and only 20% of these get invited for interviews. Since your CV is the first impression you make on your job search, it’s vital that it’s eye-catching and a good advertisement of your skills and experience. Here are 5 hacks that will help make you one of the 20%.
1. Tailor your CV
Read the job spec or job advert carefully and note any key skills or experience the company is looking for. Make sure these things are immediately visible on your CV. It makes it easier for the recruiter or hiring manager to make a match between you and the kind of candidate they’re looking for. It’s also helpful, where possible, to research the company you’re applying to and to see which of their values align with yours. Highlighting these on your CV will show the hiring manager how you would fit in with their team.
2. Make it neat and professional
If your CV is difficult to read, the recruiter might miss important information. In severe cases, they may disregard your CV altogether – especially if you are applying for a job with a strong emphasis on drafting and editing documents. It’s important to make sure that everything on your CV is well laid out and legible.
Although it’s optional, adding some colour to your CV will help it stand out visually, and adding a photo will make you seem more personable, giving the recruiter or hiring manager a visual cue to keep in mind for later.
3. Don’t be afraid to brag
Applying for a job is not the time to be humble. You only have a few pages to introduce yourself and prove that you’re the right person for the job, so make them count. Market yourself effectively by highlighting your past achievements and outlining your key skills and competencies.
4. Be concise
Try to keep your sentences short and to the point. The longer and more detailed your CV is, the more likely the recruiter or hiring manager is to miss key information. Only add duties like achievements and key duties for your five latest jobs. For the rest just list the job title, company name, and period you were employed there. You want to keep everything on your CV as relevant and engaging as possible.
5. Proofread and get a second opinion
Once you’ve finished working on your CV, step away from it for 20-30 minutes before coming back to proofread it. This will help you look at it with a fresh set of eyes so that you to notice things you may have otherwise overlooked. It’s also helpful to get someone else you trust to proofread it too to catch any grammar or spelling mistakes you may have missed.
Most importantly, remember that this is your introduction to the recruiter or hiring manager. The more of an impression you make up front, the more likely you are to see success on your job search.
If you don’t have the time or the confidence to draft your own CV, our CV Revamp service offers a professional, eye-catching, and recruiter-reviewed CV or resume to help you make a great first impression. To find out more, email email@example.com.