It is the first impression you leave on someone you are hoping would employ you. Yet, people often do not take the necessary care when it comes to preparing their CV’s. Thoughtless mistakes can result in a CV application being rejected from the onset.
To give yourself a competitive advantage when applying for a job be sure to avoid making these mistakes on your CV.
1. The one-size-fits-all CV
With so many online recruitment platforms and portals, job-seekers tend to submit a one-size-fits-all CV. They do not tailor their CV’s for the specific job they are applying for. This could result in their CV applications being overlooked by a recruitment agency/employer – even though they have the perfect skill set for the job.
For example, a generic CV may include several jobs that were done in the past with a wide variety of experience, roles and tasks. The employer may only be looking for one or two of those particular skills. Because the CV received is broad, the employer would rather choose a candidate whose CV displays the two skills required most prominently and consistently than the more comprehensive and generic CV.
How to overcome this? Always write a strong motivational letter – highlighting why you suit the advertised role. Ensure that the CV submitted supports the motivational letter by consistently displaying the skills in previous places of employment; as requested in the job specification.
2. It’s too long or too short
Candidates can often fall into one of two categories when submitting a CV. It’s either way too long or way too short.
Employers do not have the time today to read through CV’s much longer than four pages. If a CV has too many pages, the chances are that an employer will only read the first few and then set the CV aside – often missing important information. Preferably keep the CV brief, and add the detail in an interview, than miss an opportunity to have an interview at all.
Just because a CV is submitted online does not mean it should be too brief either. Writing “Finance Manager” and expecting the employer to deduce what roles, responsibilities and tasks were undertaken in this role will not work. Candidates need to expand and explain the tasks and responsibilities undertaken while being employed.
3. Gaps in the CV
Trained recruiters will immediately spot gaps in a CV. Rather explain a gap in the CV than leave it for interpretation by the reader. For example, at RecruitMyMom a candidate may have had a career break while raising her children. Rather than omit this time from the CV, include it with an explanation of where and what one was doing at that time.
If one doesn’t explain gaps, the employer may feel the candidate is hiding something in their past. Unfortunately, you may then not have an opportunity to explain the real facts if you fail to secure an interview.
Remember, a powerful CV represents you in the absence of your physical self.
If there are many responses to the job advertised, the recruiter will skim through the applications and set aside those with the required skills and experience. After that, he/she may sift through the shortlist again, reducing the pile of prospective employees, before calling in the remaining few for an interview. Make sure that your CV is on the shortlist by following the tips above.
RecruitMyMom.co.za has hundreds of jobs available for skilled moms seeking flexible and part-time work. Register today and take a look.