No announcement yet.

How to Write the Perfect CV


  • How to Write the Perfect CV

    In a competitive job market, you want every advantage possible to stand out from the pack of other potential applicants. Before you are offered that coveted interview, you need a means by which to catch the attention of prospective employers. That’s where your CV, or curriculum vitae, becomes a critically important component of your job search.

    With the right CV, you are more likely to get an interview. CVs have a basic format, but each one reflects the individuality and particular experience of the applicant. Craft the best CV possible, and you will give yourself optimal opportunities to land an interview.

    What is a CV?

    A curriculum vitae, or CV for short, is a comprehensive and detailed account of your work experience and academic credentials. By recounting your accomplishments and career experiences, you are marketing yourself to potential employers.

    The CV is more lengthy and involved than a resume or cover letter when it comes to your schooling and work records; the standard length is no more than two pages. This format allows employers to measure your abilities based upon your academic and professional histories.

    There are particular spacing and formatting rules for CVs. Follow this advice to draft the best version of your CV the first time:
    • Use bold headings in a larger font
    • Choose legible font styles such as Arial or Calibri
    • Font size should fall between 10 and 12-point
    • Margins should be no more than 2.5cm and no less than 1.27cm

    Ideally, your CV should show why you are the best candidate for the job. A CV is a necessary part of a job application and may accompany a cover letter and completed application form.

    What should you include in your CV?

    While the content of a CV is reflective of your academic and work experiences, some elements are a must for this document. Make sure you include these sections in your CV:

    Full name, professional title, and current contact information

    The first part of your CV should contain this essential information so the prospective employer knows your name and position, as well as how to contact you for an interview. Feature this content at the top of your CV; don’t waste time and space by titling your CV as “Curriculum vitae” or “CV.”

    It is no longer necessary to include your full address on a CV; simply your town and country will do. Additionally, you will want to include a current phone number and a professional email address. This location is also ideal for links to a professional social media profile, such as Linkedin, but make sure the profile is updated. No formal introduction or personal statement is needed as these components appear in the cover letter.
    Personal profile

    Your personal profile should consist of a brief paragraph directly underneath your name and contact information. This profile gives an employer an overview of who you are, what career goals you have, and what capabilities you can bring to their company. Personal profiles are short, no more than a few sentences in length. Look at these personal profile examples to see how it’s done.

    Employment history and experience

    This section of your CV includes an outline of your employment history, including expertise and internships. List your jobs and experience in reverse chronological order with your most recent role listed first.

    With each job, record your position title, employer name, and the dates of your employment. Add a sentence that summarises the essence of those positions. List or bullet point core achievements, skills, and responsibilities associated with each role. Use action verbs to highlight your abilities and accomplishments in these jobs. Include only the duties most relevant to those positions, and avoid listing any jobs that are from over ten years ago.

    Academic qualifications

    Your education should also be listed, beginning with your most recent or current degree or qualification. Share the names of the institutions, the dates you attended, as well as the grades and qualifications you earned.

    Don’t shortchange yourself on your qualifications. The International Career Institute notes that “The more qualifications you have, the greater bargaining power you have.” Include the topics you studied but also the skills you developed via your studies, such as collaboration, work ethic, and time management.

    For recent graduates, state your degree, GCSEs, A-levels, or equivalents. Write out the institution’s name and attendance dates, then indicate your qualification or primary subject grade.

    Additional information

    Your CV should reflect your education and experience. As such, you may wish to include additional categories of information. A separate area for “Key Skills” can allow you to highlight and emphasize the talents and abilities you have that may be most attractive to the employer. Detail no more than four or five skills.

    If you need more information in your CV, consider adding an “Interests and Hobbies” section, provided the content applies in some way to the industry or company in question. For example, if you are applying for a position as a pharmacy assistant, you may wish to include your avid interest in advancements in medicine.

    What should you avoid putting in your CV?

    Even though a CV is more detailed than a resume, you don’t want it to contain errors that could cost you a chance at your dream job. Here are some things to avoid having in your CV:
    • Outdated information
    • Age and birthdate
    • Marital status
    • Headshots
    • Grammatical errors
    • Incorrect contact details
    • Fake references
    • Cliches

    While you want to tailor your CV to the position you are applying for, you don’t want to include unnecessary, inaccurate, false or careless information that can reflect negatively upon your professionalism. Proofread and check the accuracy of both your information and the potential employer’s information before you send your CV and application.

    Put your best CV forward and land that interview.

    A CV requires some meticulous composition and regular updates before it’s ready to represent you on the job market. Take your time and put the best version of your CV together, and you will be fielding phone calls for interviews in no time at all.
    Click image for larger version  Name:	International Career Institute - How To Write A CV.jpg Views:	12 Size:	175.6 KB ID:	119

    • jcoppi29
      jcoppi29 commented
      Editing a comment
      Plenty of loaded insights. What I can add is particularly a dynamic approach or at least, having a template set of CV's depending on the nature of a job position. If a job position requires written and oral skills in English, for example, the youtube presentation, as Sammie mentioned, would be phenomenal as it showcases your skills. If the position revolves around design, show the designs. It becomes then more of a show and tell situation that markets one's value to a job position.

    • kdy
      kdy commented
      Editing a comment
      Keep your CV simple. Just ensure that it gives the employer enough information for you to get an interview, but not too much so they can still learn something about you during the interview.

      And, yes -I agree with a "mother CV" as well. As you apply for a job, customize the layout of your CV, and prioritize information that are relevant to the job.

    • Gerhard
      Gerhard commented
      Editing a comment
      Best CV is one that explains everything in 2 pages or less. Interviewers tend to browse through a CV and most still wish to talk to the person applying for the job.
    Posting comments is disabled.



Article Tags


Latest Articles


  • 6 Tips for Success in Your First Office Job
    by iciedu
    You have landed an office position, and as exciting as that prospect may be, it can also be intimidating and overwhelming. Feeling nervous is normal, especially when you start a job. Like any other job, office positions come with their particular responsibilities, practices, and expected behaviours.

    To succeed in your first office job, you need to be aware of these essential elements and know how to put them into practice. Here are 6 tips for success in your first office job so you...
    04-21-2020, 12:19 PM
  • How to Structure Your Day When You’re Working From Home
    by iciedu
    Working from home offers plenty of benefits, including a flexible schedule and freedom, but it can also have its drawbacks. World events have caused more people to work from home, moving them abruptly from offices and boardrooms to the kitchen table. Transitioning from a traditional work environment to your home is harder than it appears as you’ll need to find a level of comfort to support productivity.

    An abrupt change in your working routine can leave you feeling stressed out and...
    04-14-2020, 05:11 AM
  • Should I Add My Colleagues on Social Media?
    by iciedu
    In a world dominated by instantaneous information-sharing and remote employment platforms, it’s little wonder that the colleagues with whom we spend the majority of our workday may request to follow us on social media. After all, you’re bound to make a friend or two when working with them for forty hours a week. Those colleagues will hear about your weekend adventures anyway, so why not connect with them through your social media platform?

    Employees have long communicated with each...
    03-27-2020, 05:18 PM
  • How to Write the Perfect CV
    by iciedu
    In a competitive job market, you want every advantage possible to stand out from the pack of other potential applicants. Before you are offered that coveted interview, you need a means by which to catch the attention of prospective employers. That’s where your CV, or curriculum vitae, becomes a critically important component of your job search.

    With the right CV, you are more likely to get an interview. CVs have a basic format, but each one reflects the individuality and particular...
    03-24-2020, 10:47 AM