In the world where everything is instant, a recruiter or prospective employer will decide within a minute if your cv is worth considering. This list outlines the essentials you need to keep in mind before you send your CV.
1. Cover Letter
Make sure your cover letter speaks to the key requirements listed in the job. Keep it succinct, no long-winded sentences, as you need to keep their interest. Always keep in mind that the person looking at your application may be looking at 50 others as well.
Ask yourself, “what skill or experience can I highlight that will make my CV stand out?”
2. CV Format
Keep it simple and easy to read. Make sure your CV is up to date at all times. You may lose the opportunity to be shortlisted if the recruiter has to wait for your CV to be updated. Do not copy and paste one set of duties to another role, even if they were exactly the same as it makes the reader sceptical if she notices this. Instead, spend the time tailoring each set of duties to the role.
3. Reason For Leaving
"Why is this information important, if it’s in the past?” you might ask. Employers use this to determine your dedication, loyalty and work ethic. If you are head-hunted from every job you had, the employer will think twice about investing in you by hiring you. A new staff member is an expensive cost to any business and so this is usually where he will look at risk. Highlight if the movement was out of your control – retrenchment or liquidation, or even set duration contracts where you were fulfilling a specific need, for example, maternity. Clients will ask themselves, “why does she always temp? why is she never offered a permanent role if she is good?” Answer this type of question in your CV before it is even asked.
Achievements give the prospective employer insight into your approach and accountability. If you were able to increase client base as a marketer, or implement cost-saving as a bookkeeper, then that is kind of thinking that the employer will appreciate. This is across the board of experience: senior or junior. I had a receptionist on a short-term contract that implemented a checking file for parcels and other deliveries that the employer still uses today – that was adding value to the job!
5. Check Your CV
Check, and check again! Check your grammar and spelling. In most cases where spelling errors are detected, the recruiter/employer will decline the CV. Make sure that your dates are correct. As a legal document, the accuracy of the dates and other skills/experience must be correct. Misrepresenting yourself, even in error, can have dire consequences.
Make your CV count. It’s not only about your past; it’s the doorway to your future.
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