Is It Time To Polish Up Your CV?

If you’re looking for a new job or a promotion, is your CV up to the job? Does it show off your skills and your expertise in the best way possible? Will it help you to stand out from the other candidates?

Everyone will give you different advice about your CV, so here are my own personal tops tips on how to polish your CV, to help you to shine!

When you’re applying for a new job – whether at a new company or in the business where you currently work – your CV is often what delivers the first impression of you as a candidate to the person doing the recruiting.

The recruiter will probably have a short attention span, because they’re busy doing their day job, as well as recruiting a new member of staff. It’s also highly likely that they will have a big pile of CVs to read through. Add these two factors together and you’ll see that you’ve only got about 20 seconds to grab their attention at the start of your CV. With this in mind, start your CV with your name, following it straight away with what you’re great at. Write a short paragraph outlining your key skills or experience, as appropriate to the specific job you’re applying for, or a list of 5-7 bullet points.

Many people start their CV with their name and follow it with their address and contact details. This information won’t help to sell you to the recruiter, so leave your contact details to the end of the CV. Use the precious space at the start of your CV – the first 20 seconds – to add something that will really make yours stand apart from all the other CVs that the recruiter has to work through.

As well as your skills, education and experience, always include two or three hobbies and interests in your CV. This will help the interviewers to get to know you better and it will give them a hook – something to ask you about if they invite you for an interview. A point of connection will really help the interview conversation to flow. For example, don’t just say that you have two daughters, when you could say that you have two very musical daughters, as it can lead to a more interesting conversation.

CV writing is the art of putting in the best hooks that can be picked up by the recruiter. It’s about making their job easier, so make sure that you include some great hooks that any recruiter can easily pick up. That way, your CV will work harder for you and get your more interviews. A great CV also makes the job of the interviewer easier, allowing you to make a better impression!

There’s a new video on our website all about polishing up your CV – click here to watch it.

Three Top Tips


Here are three top tips to help you to polish up your CV:

·         Include plenty of white space – don’t try to cram too much onto the page. Leave enough space for the recruiter to write notes

 ·         Keep the font size sensible – use 12pt on the first page and reduce it to 11pt on the second page if you need to. Any smaller than that and you’re trying to say too much and your CV will be difficult to read

·         Use examples – give a concise example of each strength or skill that you list in your CV. Taking this one step further, have an example ready for when the interviewer asks you about a particular skill.

There are more tips on getting your dream job in our videos – click here to watch them. If you’d like some personal help with polishing up your CV, click here to email us or call 01483 303 593.

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