How to write a CV that gets you noticed
There are multiple ways how to write a CV that has the wow-factor, but unfortunately there is no magical formula that will tell you how to do it. However, by following these eight easy steps on how to write a CV, you are heading in the right direction.
1. No fibbing!
Don’t tell lies. Lies, here, means saying something like “I can ride a horse” when in actual fact all you’ve ever done is feed a Shetland Pony a carrot.
If you pretend to have knowledge that is crucial for the role, then you get invited to interview, chances are you will be found out and it will all have been a big waste of time for you and the hirer. Best to tell the truth.
2. 8 Seconds to Shine
Everywhere you look when trying to find out how to write a CV it seems to say, “your CV must fit on two sides of A4”. This isn’t entirely true.
The average time that a hirer takes to look at your CV is somewhere between 8 and 30 seconds, unless your CV really catches their eye. This isn’t long, so you need to be succinct and leave out the waffle. The length of your CV should be appropriate to your experience and to the position you have applied for.
For example, if you recently graduated and have little work experience, 4 pages is too much. However, if you have 40 years’ industry experience and are applying for a senior role, 4 pages is probably appropriate.
3. First impressions count
You would dress up nice for an interview, right? So, why let your CV go out wearing patched socks and a threadbare jumper? Make sure your CV looks nice and neat. Don’t make the typeface too small to cram more in and make sure you have clearly defined headers.
4. List achievements, not duties
Duties are dull lists of everything you do, but achievements show what impact you have had on previous employer businesses. For example, a duty could be “I make coffee for the office”; on the flip-side the achievement linked to this would be “I increased productivity in the office by 200% by keeping everyone hydrated.” The achievement sounds a lot better, right?
You should be proud of your achievements and make sure that the person reading your CV knows just how great it would be if you joined their team.
5. Keywords, keywords, keywords
Not only will recruiters thank you for this, but you will thank yourself when your CV is appearing in a recruiter’s search for candidates to put forward for what could be your dream role. If you have applied for a role through a recruitment company your CV is now searchable by that office or if you have uploaded your CV to a UK-wide job site, your CV is now searchable to recruiters across the country.
Recruiters will search for candidates using keywords specific to a particular role and you will want to make sure that you pack as many keywords in your CV as possible. If you can use industry specific software or have specific skills make sure they are on there.
Prospective employers will look for how much effort you have put into your CV, because this will likely reflect how much you put in at work. So, try to eliminate as many mistakes as you can. Use the spellcheck and get a friend to read it for you to make sure it makes sense.
7. Contact Details
Excellent, your CV looks amazing, you sound like the perfect addition to an employer’s team and it’s the perfect role for you, so the recruitment consultant picks up the phone… AND there are no contact details on your CV. *DreamsDashed*
Check, double check, even triple check that your contact details are on there and are correct.
8. Tinker, Tailor
Tailor your CV to the types of position you are applying for. If you are multi-disciplined and are applying to a variety of different roles that require different skills, make sure you create CV’s to cover both disciplines.
Also, remember to keep updating it with relevant experience. Don’t apply with a CV that is three years old, you will definitely have gained new experiences over that time, so remember to include them.
BONUS TIP: Word
In order for recruiters to easily search for your CV, your CV has to be in a searchable format. PDF documents restrict the ability of search engines to scan the content of a CV. Word documents however, are easily scanned by search functions in recruiting software and online platforms, which means that they are much easier to find.
Armed with these eight+ tips on how to write a CV, you are ready to start creating yours and don’t forget to ask your recruitment consultant for their opinion! Get in touch with your local consultants or follow this link to get more advice.
“Caroline and her team took the time to listen to and fully understand our requirements. They demonstrated their understanding by presenting us with a short list of candidates all of whom could have filled the post. Thoroughly recommended for their fantastic service, thank you.”
Select Client – Google Review – Select Appointments St Albans
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“I have worked with and for ‘Select Appointments’ since Aug 1st 2017. I have nothing but absolute praise for the care and attention I have received whilst working under their ‘umbrella’. The interaction and provision of work, remuneration and holiday entitlement is in my opinion second to none, I would certainly recommend the agency to anyone with full and utmost confidence.”
Select Candidate – Google Review – Select Appointments Norwich
Best agency in Cambridge
“Select Cambridge is an excellent agency specialised in offering jobs in the Hospitality sector. The quantity and quality offered make it the best agency in Cambridge. Personally, I have had the opportunity to work with […] an excellent consultant, attentive to the details and needs of her employees. I highly recommend it for those who are considering joining this sector.”
Select Candidate – Google Review – Select Hospitality Cambridge
They Invest the Time
“I have worked with the Select team on both assisting me recruit as a customer and more recently as a candidate. Having first worked with Select on a couple of recruitment projects with great success she was my first call when I needed assistance with my own career move.
For me the difference with Select is that they invest the time to understand your requirements both as a business customer and as a candidate and match you to the right people or positions. Unlike a lot of Recruitment companies the communication is strong from the Select team with regular updates and you never feel like just another candidate in a drawer. Dedication, passion, professionalism and commitment are the qualities that set them apart from the rest and I cannot rate the Select team more highly.”
Select Client & Candidate – Google Review – Select Appointments Lowestoft
Very Supportive Team
“I worked with the very supportive team from Select. He rang just before every appointment I had with my new employers to offer advice and support. He was also on the end of the phone when I asked for advice about my current position. Needless to say, I was offered the job I was recruited for and had a very good experience with Select.”
Select Candidate – Google Review – Select Hospitality Peterborough
Able to Get Results
“Select have been absolutely amazing from the get go. I haven’t had any problems with finding a job, pay or communication. The team found me a new job within 1 week and another job after the contract ended on that one.
I would heavily recommend this company as not only are the staff so friendly, they are able to get the results that you want from employment. After years of working with other agencies and having many problems, Select come out on top and will be using them in the future. I found an amazing job and was so sad to leave it as I have continued my journey at university.”
Select Candidate – Google Review – Select Appointments Chelmsford
Lovely Agency to Temp With
“Lovely agency to Temp with. Always there for advice and respond quickly to any queries I have had over the last couple of months. I would like to thank the team for the incredible service they have provided me, very professional and they really care about their work.”
Select Candidate – Google Review – Select Appointments Oxford
Cannot Recommend Them Enough
“Select Appointments are an AMAZING agency!
My consultant believed in me and saw my strengths. He gave me back my work confidence then found me my dream job. Nothing is too much trouble. The team are with you every step of the way ensuring that you are well prepared. I cannot recommend Select highly enough.”
Select Candidate – Google Review – Select Appointments Northampton
“Probably the very first agency that provided amazing customer experience to me. Staff are very professional and friendly to the point where they have managed to find something that suits me in the first 30 minutes of walking in for the first time. Paperwork isn’t as burdensome as in other recruitment agencies which is a big plus. I got an impression of genuine care from them due to the fact that they were always in contact with me and whenever I had an enquiry they responded asap.”
Select Candidate – Google Review – Select Appointments Lincoln
Dedication is Abundantly Clear
“I am an IT Engineer specialising in Apple systems. Over the course of 1 year I entertained many recruiters claiming their understanding and ability in finding a position that suited my expertise.
Chris Lo is the 1st (& only) recruiter in my experience that not only dedicated & understood my goals, but also had the technical education to fully understand my abilities and provide appropriate prospects. This lead to my current position with a company & group of people I want to stay with indefinitely.
Chris’s dedication is abundantly clear; extremely communicative and driven nature, exemplifies his passion and character.”
Select Candidate – Google Review – Select Appointments Croydon