We all know that a well-crafted CV opens doors to new job opportunities, without it, you’re not getting an interview, so you best make it work as hard you do!
Now, more than ever it’s important to take time to review your CV. I’m not talking about adding your latest role to a new page, I’m talking about taking a step back and actually looking at your CV as if you were the recipient.
Some of the most important areas of your CV are often overlooked, here are some tips for getting your CV employment ready.
1. Ensure your CV is well formatted and styled, the general look and feel of a person is also expressed in the presentation of the CV. Check your spacing, spelling and font size To help you we’ve created a CV template for you.
2. Does the top 1/4 of the first page make an impact? Remember, it takes about 5 secs of viewing your CV before it gets longlisted, shortlisted or thrown out – yours could be in a pack of 800 applicants!
3. Spelling and grammar are crucial! Too often I see CVs with even an address being misspelled – in our roles, it’s even more critical to get this right, if you can’t check the spelling of your own CV, how are you going to do an Executive Assistant role. I can tell you now, CVs with poor spelling are thrown out immediately.
4. Two (2) pages MAX! You may have 15 years of the most amazing employment history, but ‘ain’t nobody got time for that’ nor do they consider anything past the last 5-7 years as hugely relevant. You can capture some of these in your key highlights which are positioned right up front.
5. Tailor it to the job application! Seriously, if you can’t do this, do you even want the job? I always encourage our candidates to change or tweak certain elements for better alignment to the role and organisation. Your CV needs to reflect the areas the employer or recruiter has detailed in their ad, that way you’re immediately standing out and matching exactly to what they’re after.
6. If using a recruiter, save your CV in Word rather than PDF, this is to protect your personal particulars. It’s easier for a recruiter to send the appropriate content to perspective employers.
7. Be sure to use your personal contact information not your current employers’ email, however, make sure your personal email is actually professional – personal emails such as firstname.lastname@example.org is not a great reflection of your professional brand.
8. Keep it relevant! Summarising your role in specific dot points or a couple of paragraphs is all that is needed, an EA role, for example, encompasses many of the same tasks, think about using the words managed, lead, engaged, relations and communicated.
9. Check your social media platforms for privacy, you are sadly mistaken if you think a future employer is not going to check your socials, they most definitely will, so either keep it clean or lock it down! Read Michelle Mitchell’s Tips on our blog.
10. Your referees should be your current employer and one to two past recent employers.
Tip: If they want to call your referees you’re in with a very high chance of getting the role, so talking to your current employer about the potential of a new role might be a good idea about now.
What does a good CV look like?
There is no hard and fast rule, however, to help our EA community, we have share a few examples of CVs which highlight the elements we look for when recruiting.
The MS Word resume – If you don’t have graphic design skills, but you have an awesome grasp of Microsoft Word, try our MS Word Resume Template.
Canva Templates – There are literally hundreds of Canva templates you can use. Activate a free Canva account to make use of their templates. Be warned though, select a template which is appropriate to the position you’re applying for. Take a look at these examples as a starting point. You can use these templates for free in Canva.
Ready to start job hunting?
Sorted your resume and want to be considered for upcoming jobs? Register your interest on the Capital EA Recruitment Database.