What is a CV?
Curriculum Vitae (or CV) is a Latin word which means to give a brief account of your career.
A CV is used to show a potential recruiter what you have previously achieved in your career as well as your capabilities in future roles.
How to write a personal statement
- Avoid having a generic profile/personal statement as this can imply a lack of interest in the role which you are applying.
- To achieve maximum effect, it should be customised to each and every role they apply for.
- Seek to extract the most relevant and salient points from your experience to date.
- Keep sentences short, avoid waffle and match up experience and qualifications to those listed on the job spec.
- A personal profile should be no longer than 7-8 lines.
Competition for roles is fierce in the labour market. Even the competition for an interview!
It is important to spend an extra little bit of time crafting an impeccable CV which will create impact and differentiate you from other applicants.
There are areas to concentrate on with your CV.
1. LAYOUT AND STYLE
5. WHAT NOT TO DO
LAYOUT AND STYLE should include the following:
- Your Name and contact details, Phone number, e-mail address and LinkedIn profile.
- All relevant qualifications along with, experience, skills and competencies for the role.
- Prepare your CV in reverse chronological order. (Most recent first)
- List both your academic and non-academic qualifications. Again these should be in reverse chronological order. Include results achieved and years attended.
- Write your CV with the reader in mind – use bullet points as these are easier to read. Frame past experience in the past tense (e.g. Completed, Achieved) and avoid the use of I at the start of each sentence as this is redundant.
- Tailor the CV to the role – be sure to revise and edit your CV so that your relevant experience and skills are made obvious and list these first.
- Use plain English – if you do include acronyms, be sure to explain unless they are generally well known.
- Include a section on Key Achievements for each position and include information such as: positive track record in achieving targets/metrics, success in audits, awards, etc.
- The suggested length is no more than 2 pages for a graduate and 4 for an experienced professional.
- Ensure that you only include information relevant to the position you are applying.
- Include a line stating that references are available upon request.
WHAT NOT TO DO
- DO NOT write on the CV (or in the title) the date the CV was prepared. This will make the CV appear out of date.
- DO NOT include anything you are not able to discuss at an interview.
- DO NOT leave any gaps on CV – always account for breaks in your work history.
- DO NOT lie about or exaggerate exam results or achievements – always be honest.
- DO NOT have a LinkedIn profile with contradictory/missing/dated information