CV Advice

Writing a CV can be a daunting task – there’s a wealth of information out there and figuring out where to start can feel like a job in itself.

That’s why we’ve created an brief guide to writing a CV that will grab the attention of potential employers and help you bag that all-important interview.

When applying for any job, your CV is the first chance to make a good impression and stand out from the crowd. However, research reveals that only 15% of UK adults feel confident when writing and submitting a CV for a new job role.

Remember, the purpose of your CV is to gain the interview not the job!

 

Format

Everyone has different ideas about CV design – the most important thing is that it’s clear and uncluttered. You only have about five seconds to grab their attention.

Some people use colourful backgrounds, fancy fonts and photos, but an employer is looking for information, not style. Keep it simple, positive and easy to read.

 

How long should a CV be?

There are no hard and fast rules on length, but put yourself in the shoes of the employer – they want to know the headlines, not the details (they can ask you about those at interview).

Generally, you want to keep it to about two pages. Three pages is an absolute maximum.

 

Layout

Start with your name and contact details at the top. Then provide a brief profile of yourself – a couple of sentences summing up your work experience and current goals.

Next is your career history – start with the most recent at the top, and include your key responsibilities and achievements for each role.

Then it’s education, followed by a couple of lines on your personal interests.

Note: You don’t need to include your full address (the town or area will do), date of birth, nationality or ethnic origins and you shouldn’t need to include a photo either.

Never include personal information, that can be used by fraudsters, such as your full address, national insurance number or bank details (genuine employers can obtain this information from you later).

 

Hobbies and interests

This is a very short section that gives you a chance to include specific interests or hobbies. Defiitely mention things that involve club or team activities, volunteering or involvement in the community.

Think about what the hobby says about you to your potential employer – what skills does it show you have? You’re looking for things that are relevant and add value to your CV.

 

Spelling and grammar

It doesn’t matter how amazing your experience is or how active you are in the local community if your CV is full of spelling or grammatical errors.

Employers will reject a CV instantly based on a single mistake – because it shows you didn’t put the time and effort in.

 

Be honest

It might sound obvious, but be truthful. Never try to fudge dates or roles, or to hide periods of unemployment. The most basic of checks will expose your deceit and ruin any chance of getting a job.

 

Second opinion

Once you have read and re-read your CV, ask a family member or friend to read it through too. Ask them if it’s clear and logical, if there’s anything you’ve missed or if there are any gaps or ambiguous parts.

 

How can we help you?

If you are searching for a new job in Cumbria, the Lake District or Lancashire, please get in touch. You can call us: 01946 448765 (Cumbria) or 01772 846320 (Lancashire) alternatively send us a message and we’ll get straight back to you and do all we can to assist you with your job search.

Good luck with your job search!