What makes a great CV?

What makes a great CV?

If you’ve been looking for a job and you’re ready to start applying, then you’ll need a top notch CV under your belt.

When you’re writing a CV you want it to stand out. Did you know the average recruiter or hiring manager will take 6 seconds to review your CV before making a decision about how suitable you are?

So, the question is what makes a great CV: and how do you get one?

With over 70 years’ recruitment experience, it’s fair to say that we’ve seen our fair share of CVs in our time: the good, the bad and the ugly. Here are some of our pointers to creating the best possible CV!

1) Tailor your CV

Whilst it’s time consuming, making your CV specific to the role that you’re applying for is important. The easiest way to do this is to take the job advert or the job description for the role you’re applying for, and pick out the key skills. Once you’ve got these together, you can start to include those specific language and skills throughout your CV. For example, if the job asks for candidates with good communication skills, you can add a line into your personal statement about your ‘excellent communication skills when dealing with colleagues at all levels.’

2) Don’t overload it

You’ve not got long to impress with your CV, so it’s good to try and keep it to two sides of A4 – chances are, anything longer than this won’t get reviewed and could be off-putting. It’s also a good idea to make sure that you put your personal statement and key skills section right at the top, and then put your most recent experience first.

3) Sell what you can prove

Telling hiring managers that you’re a ‘people person’ and that you ‘work well individually or as part of a team’ might sound good in theory; but the truth is that those things are very hard to prove without seeing you in action. Instead of putting in things that you’ll struggle to prove, why not put in skills that you can back up in an interview? For example, include things like ’delivering projects on time and in full’ ‘120% fulfilment rate’ or include your latest targets and performance figures.

4) Check, check and check again

There’s nothing worse than a typo on a CV. Even if you were leading the pack for landing an interview, a typo can be the one thing that pulls you back. After all, if you’ve not triple checked your CV before sending it out, what does it say about your level of attention to detail? Just putting it through spellcheck isn’t enough – send it to a trusted friend or family member to look over first. Believe us when we say it’s worth it!

Still looking for more CV inspiration?

Why not contact your local Brook Street branch to get some expert advice tailored just for you.