Over the years and during my career with Jobcentre Plus and other Training Providers, I have come across hundreds of CVs. Many of these were poorly written and contained numerous items that were of no importance to employers. I was recently sent a CV that contained the author’s National Insurance number! Errors like that can be horrendous, especially if the CV falls into the wrong hands.
WHAT THE EMPLOYER WANTS TO SEE
Name: Simple enough.
Contact Details: Supply mobile & land-line numbers where applicable.
Personal/Career Profile: This should be a brief description of your field of work, do not make it ‘War & Peace’!
Key Skills: This should include skills that are relevant to the current job application, along with the ‘obvious’ skills.
Career History: Your work history should go back no further than 10 years, if the employer wants to know more than that, they will ask you.
Education/Training History: List your Secondary school + any exam results, along with any College and further training courses.
Hobbies: This can be important. In just a few sentences, detail what you enjoy doing the most and where applicable mention ‘ spending time with family and friends ‘. The employer could have something in common with you and that will give you more to talk about if you reach the interview stage.
References: You can list your Referees (with their permission), or just write ‘References are available on request’.
Never criticise previous employers on your CV.
Never write Curriculum Vitae at the top of the CV. Most employers see hundreds of CV’s on a weekly basis. They know what a CV looks like. They do not need to be told that it is a CV, it insults their intelligence and in most cases it will be filed in the nearest waste bin.
Do not include Date of Birth and Marital Status. This is open to discrimination by some employers.
Do not exceed more than 3 A4 pages in your CV. 2 pages is the accepted norm, but 3 is okay in this current climate.
Never include your National Insurance number. If the CV falls into the wrong hands, your details can be used for fraudulent purposes.
Finally, and most importantly, if you have a Criminal Record DO NOT mention it on your CV. I know that people say ‘ Honesty is the best policy ‘, but not in this case. I have experience of helping ex-offenders into employment so if this applies to you, I can also supply advice in this field.
Keep it brief and to the point. Do not waffle on and always use bullet points where applicable. Always remember that you can tailor your CV to suit the relevant job applications that you are making. It is important to check for spelling mistakes on your CV. Always insert your telephone number at the top of additional pages, as the employer might lose the main page of your CV ( it happens ! ).
Finally, if anyone has any questions, just email me at any time and I will gladly try my best to answer them.
I am always willing to offer free advice to anyone who needs it regarding their CV / Resume. I currently work as a freelance CV writer and have enjoyed some considerable success. I have recently taken on some clients in the USA.
I can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org
Good Luck to all.