Today we have another set of tips how to write a perfect CV.
Rather than list your skills – adapt your CV
A common mistake is to write a career history – rather than explaining why you are perfect for the job. You will naturally list skills from your job 5 years ago, which may have little relevance to the job you want.
If you are applying for a management role, then will your photocopying experience still be relevant?
You adapt yourself every day, when attending events, when fashions change, hairstyles, music trends, the list is endless – so why wouldn’t you adapt your CV for your desired job?
How to adapt your CV
- Google the ‘top skills required’ for your chosen job/industry – there is so much content out there to help you
- Write down the top 10 skills needed
- Number these 1-10 (E.g. communication skills, analytical skills etc)
- Review your CV and write a little number next to time you have demonstrated this skill.
Your CV should now be covered in little numbers.
Make a note of how many 1s, 2s, 3s etc you have. You should be in this situation:
- For some of the 10 skills, you do not have any numbers on your CV
- You have bullet points / paragraphs with no numbers against them
- Your CV emphasises some skills too much.
This is good. You are starting to analyse. When a hiring manager reviews a CV, it is a tick box exercise to see if you have the required skills. Make it easy for them – show them what they are looking for.
Go back to the past to help your future
By now, you realize that there are some gaps – E.g. you have no 1s, no 5s, no 8s.
For example, you are applying for a sales role, your CV hasn’t mentioned your good presentation skills.
It’s time to reflect, think back, discuss with friends / family, meditate – whatever it takes to remember that you once got an A for a presentation at Uni, or you are currently captain of your sports team, or you chair a weekly meeting at work.
You will have many more examples than you think, it’s just about getting into the right mindset. Do this for every area that is lacking numbers on your CV.
Responsibilities vs Achievements
Another common mistake in the ‘what I’ve done vs what is relevant’ conundrum, is how to highlight your achievements.
The solution – why not have responsibilities and achievement as subheadings for each job in your employment history?
That way the reader can quickly flick over your relevant responsibilities… and move onto being impressed by your outstanding annual review, your promotion within 6 months or your reward lunch with the CEO.
You are Interview ready
Once you have re-written your CV to reflect the skills needed for the job, you have started your interview preparation.
You have a list of examples in your mind for skills 1-10 – which you can elaborate on further at interview.
This will give you confidence to blow the interview panel away.
Extra tips for perfect CV
- Two pages ideally, three pages maximum
- Short, punchy language, this is not an essay so keep in snappy
- Bullet points are much easier to read than paragraphs
- Structure your bullet points in order of importance
- Use Figures for your examples, figures jump out at the reader
- The ‘look’ is important – use Google to find examples of good CVs
- Use tangible examples wherever possible, but just hint at them, to elaborate on at interview.
Let us know, if these tips helped you to write the perfect cv.