How to write a CV

Now it is that time, you need to apply for a job, but you need to send the employer, recruitment consultant or recruitment agency a CV.


Writing a CV can be seen as a very daunting task writing a CV. Looking at a blank screen or a blank piece of paper, not knowing what to write and where. Do you know what a CV should contain?


Well do not worry we have created a simple guide to the most important information you should have on your CV:


Basic information

At the top of your CV should be your full name, address, telephone number, email and date of birth. Remember though to use a professional email address like joe.bloggs@mail.com instead of catscanrun@mail.com. First impressions count and you do not have long to stand out and make an excellent first impression.


Education and Qualifications

If you are still in education then this section usually comes next. You should start by listing your most relevant educational qualification, (normally degree, A-Level and GCSE’s). Do not forget to include the grades.

Also make sure that you tailor education and qualifications to each job, as some applications may not require GCSE’s. But if you do include your GCSE’s remember to be brief with them.


Work experience

This is where you now include all your past work experience; remember that any job is a job at the end of the day, so include it! Even if it wasn’t the best job in the world, it is still work experience, and there maybe skills you learned that are transferable to other professions. If the job is completely irrelevant to the new position or you did them a long time ago then simply ignore them.


Remember to pick our skills you learned during each job you have held and make sure you use CV buzzwords to help describe them and give your CV a huge impact.


Interests and achievements

Listing interests and achievements helps the reader to build a mental image of you in their head. Some people do not add this section, because they feel is it irrelevant to the job position. This is for you to decide, think does the reader really need to know this about you? Space is a premium on your CV!


This section should be used to demonstrate good qualities about yourself and are relevant to the role you are applying for. Try to avoid anything that you have done prior to you being 16 years of age, as it is mostly probably going to be irrelevant.


Skills

People love to know what skills you have, this section should be short and to the point, even just listing your skills is enough. Avoid big blocks of text as people will not read it; they just want to scan your CV so make your skills easily readable. You could mention any language skills, computing skills or life skills you have learned, but do not lie! If you can speak a language make sure you put your level of competency speaking it.


Being able to use a computer is becoming more and more important in all job positions; so if you are able to use one then put it down. Can you switch between PC’s and Mac’s, can you use Microsoft Office suite, Abode Creative Suite, if yes then list it! But if you cannot do not lie about it, as it will only damage your professional credibility.


References

This is a required section on any CV, but what you put in it is always up for debate. Some people like to put the references of their last two employers, names, address and contact details. Other people like to just put “Excellent references available upon request”. Have a think what is most relevant to you.


Do not forget though you can always ask for references from a teacher, tutor or professor. But make sure you always contact your referees so they know you have added them and maybe contacted by a future employer one day.


Now check

Ensure that you have double, triple checked your CV, please read our CV for mistakes so that you know what the most common mistakes are. This will help you to avoid falling into the common CV mistake traps. Even get someone else to proof read it.


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