• Employers generally spend less than one minute reading a CV before deciding to reject it, or to shortlist it for detailed consideration. If you fail to make the right impact, you missed your chance.
• If applying for an advertised vacancy, always ensure that you comply with any application process entirely. The vacancy notice might specify: how to apply (CV, application form, online application), the length and/or format of the CV, whether a covering letter is required, etc.
• Be brief: two A4 pages are usually more than enough, irrespective of your education or experience. Do not exceed three pages. If you hold a degree, include your secondary school qualifications only if relevant to the job in question.
• Is your work experience limited? Describe your education and training first; highlight volunteering activities and placements or traineeships.
Be clear and concise
• Use short sentences. Avoid clichés. Concentrate on the relevant aspects of your training and work experience.
• Give specific examples. Quantify your achievements.
• Update your CV as your experience develops. Don’t hesitate to remove old information if it does not add value for the position.
Always adapt your CV to suit the post you are applying for
• Highlight your strengths according to the needs of the employer and focus on the skills that match the job.
• Do not include work experience or training which is not relevant to the application.
• Explain any breaks in your studies or career giving examples of any transferable skills you might have learned during your break.
• Before sending your CV to an employer, check again that it corresponds to the required profile.
• Do not artificially inflate your CV; if you do, you are likely to be found out at the interview.
Pay attention to the presentation of your CV
• Present your skills and competences clearly and logically, so that your advantages stand out.
• Put the most relevant information first.
• Pay attention to spelling and punctuation.
• Print your CV on white paper (unless you are asked to send it electronically).
• Retain the suggested font and layout.
Check your CV once you have filled it in
• Correct any spelling mistakes, and ensure the layout is clear and logical.
• Have someone else re-read your CV so that you are sure the content is clear and easy to understand.
POSITION PREFERRED JOB STUDIES APPLIED FOR PERSONAL STATEMENT Delete non relevant headings.
All CV headings/fields are optional. Remove any fields left empty.
Replace with First name(s) Surname(s)
If you have more than one first name, start with the one you usually use. Example:
Replace with house number, street name, city, postcode, country
Choose the postal address at which you can be contacted quickly. Example: 32 Reading Rd., Birmingham B26 3QJ, United Kingdom
Replace with telephone number Replace with mobile number
Choose the number at which you can be contacted quickly, most likely your mobile phone. Example:
+44 7871 330 1234
Separate groups of digits in accordance to national convention, to ensure your telephone number is easy to read. Example: +<CountryCode> <AreaCode> <LocalNumber>
State e-mail address
Choose the e-mail address at which you can be contacted quickly, preferably your personal e-mail address. Avoid fancy or silly addresses. Example:
State personal website(s)
Be sure it is relevant to the position and it does not hinder your application. Example: www.sample.com
Replace with type of IM service / Replace with messaging account(s)
Be sure it is relevant to the position and it does not hinder your application. Example: AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) john.smith
Sex Enter sex | Date of birth dd/mm/yyyy | Nationality Enter nationality/-ies
Complete only if required. Check local legal provisions regarding data such as sex, age, nationality, etc. on a CV. Example:
Sex Male | Date of birth 01/04/1973 | Nationality Spanish
Replace with job applied for / position / preferred job / studies applied for / personal statement
This heading gives an immediate overview of the purpose of your application. Delete non relevant headings in the left column. Examples:
JOB APPLIED FOR
Human Resources Assistant (ref. 562/2013)
Customer Service Representative or Clerical Support
STUDIES APPLIED FOR
Postgraduate Applied Economics
A graduate with strong communication and organisational skills gained in nursing, now seeking to move into HR as a trainee manager
Use ‘Personal statement’ only if you have a clear idea of what job you wish to apply for. Focus on your core strengths and achievements related to the job, rather than past duties. A few sentences are enough (max. 50 words). Avoid generic statements such as ‘Looking for a challenging opportunity’, etc.
• Focus on the work experience that gives added weight to your application.
• Add separate entries for each experience. Start with the most recent.
• If your work experience is limited:
o describe your education and training first;
o mention volunteering or (paid/unpaid) work placements which provide evidence of work experience.
• If you are applying for a position you have no prior experience of, underline skills gained from previous jobs relevant for the position. For example if you apply for a managerial position but have never worked as manager, emphasise that your previous position involved significant responsibility and decision-making duties (delegation, coordination, training staff, etc.)
Replace with occupation or position held
Maintenance technician / Receptionist / Ice Hockey Volunteer Coach
Replace with employer’s name and locality (if relevant, full address and website)
Anderson and Dobbs Ltd., 12 Highland Road, Edinburgh EH3 4AB, United Kingdom Indicate telephone, fax, e-mail or Internet address only if required. Example: