Resume/CV Writing Tips: How to Write a Winning CV
You’ve found your dream job, but sending in your resume or CV didn’t get you the call-back you hoped for. If you’re like most people, you’ve been in this situation before, but don’t worry, it’s not too late to make a change. With the right resume/CV writing tips, you can craft a compelling CV that no employer can resist.
Your CV is the first point of contact between you and your potential employer. Therefore, it should be well-structured, succinct, and easy to read, with a simple font, minimal styling, and bullet points to break down information.
To ensure your CV stands out, follow these recommended tips:
- Start with your name, address, and contact details
List the primary contact information that employers can use to reach you easily. Ensure that your details are clear and prominently displayed at the top of your CV.
Pro tip: Include a link to your up-to-date LinkedIn profile in your introductory details.
- Introduce yourself
Summarize and highlight what you can offer a potential employer. Summarize any career highlights that will draw attention to what you have accomplished. Tailor this section for each role you apply for, and aim to make yourself stand out from the competition.
- Summarize your skills
Use brief bullet points to list the skills and experience that are specific and relevant to the role you’re applying for. Hiring managers will quickly scan this section to see what you can offer and your suitability for the role.
Pro tip: Use the same adjectives as those used in the job advertisement.
- Highlight relevant experience
This section should include your work history in reverse chronological order, including paid work, relevant volunteer or work experience placements. Tailor this section to the job, specifically where key responsibilities in previous roles are applicable to your application.
Pro tip: Highlight how you overcame challenges both personally and as a team member.
- Shout about your achievements
Your CV is your opportunity to sell yourself and highlight why you are the best fit for the role, so be sure to include where you have gone above and beyond or made a significant achievement. If your achievements are measurable, include the numbers, such as “increased sales over target by 10%”.
- List any training, education, and courses
Only list what is relevant or required for the role you’re applying for, starting with the most recent. Showcase where you may have upskilled or could bring new knowledge to the organization.
- Mention any interests/hobbies (optional)
Highlight your personality with any hobbies or interests outside of work. Note that it is optional to include this on your CV, and it is best to avoid stating anything that could cause friction early on.
- References are available on request
It’s fine to list references are available on request if you’re not comfortable disclosing your referees until further into the recruitment process. Make sure you have them readily available and contactable when requested.
Final top five tips:
- Use the right keywords to ensure your CV is picked up in word searches.
- Explain any gaps in your CV and highlight the skills you developed.
- Don’t include acronyms or organization-related terminology.
- Include two forms of contact, email and mobile.
- Spelling and grammar check – ensure you check your CV thoroughly for any spelling and grammar errors. Consider having a friend or family member check it over for you as well.
By following these resume/CV writing tips, you can create a winning CV that stands out to potential employers and increases your chances of landing your dream job.