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How to Write a Successful CV

What is a CV?

CV, or Curriculum Vitae means 'a brief account of a person's education, qualifications, and previous occupations, typically sent with a job application'

It is a document that you will need to carry out an effective job search, both on and offline; it needs to show a recruiter that the person in the CV can carry out the job they are recruiting for and has the relevant background, skills and knowledge.

What will sell you on paper?

Firstly you need to make sure you have time to prepare your CV, the time you put in will reflect the successful outcome - you can't expect a quick 10 minute 'throw together' CV to hit the mark, especially with the ruthless processes that recruiters apply to applications; your CV needs to match online search processes and be aesthetically pleasing to the recruiter whilst containing purely relevant, targeted and focused content.

Skills, Expertise and Achievements; recruiters do not want to know your life story BUT they do want to know what you are going to bring to their organisation, so show them! Include what you have achieved in your current and past roles that have developed business opportunities and how much this supported company growth, how it affected YOY growth and how your development of training packages overcame a skills shortage and saved 60% on recruitment costs!

Why can I not just write a job description in my CV?

You can, but it will not help you stand out from the competition; your CV is about you and needs to reflect your personal contributions as opposed to a description of duties, it shows what makes you better than the other applicants?

Does one size fit all?

No, we have included an example of a CV on our site but this does not necessarily cover all types of CV requirements, for instance:

  • School / College Leaver: You will need to show your success at school/college through subjects and grades (achieved or projected), your involvement with clubs and any extracurricular activities, were you a prefect or librarian at school, did you buddy up with younger year groups and support with study areas etc… Your CV will focus on study with some work experience detail.
  • Graduate: Your CV will focus on University and Degree study; dissertations, projects, areas of recognitions, specialist study areas, internships, work placements etc…
  • Developing Career: Your CV will show a proven background in your field through skills, expertise and achievement in a professional capacity with your career detail now taking relevance over your education areas.
  • Executive Career:As a Board Director or MD, your CV needs to reflect your strengths in business management, direction and development with a key reference here being on your quantifiable achievements; YOY growth, market share increase, new market developments etc…
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