Improve your job prospects by improving your CV.

The first important tool in your next career move!

Seven seconds is all it takes.

Studies suggest that a CV has about 7 seconds to impress in order for a more in depth review to be carried out. In order to ensure that you pass this first test you need to ensure:

Your CV is neat and tidy and in a readable font.

You have included all your relevant skills for the job to which you are applying.

That there are no obvious spelling errors.

Once you have passed the first test you will need to look at the layout of your CV.  There is no specific rule governing the layout but most follow a similar format which means that potential employers can find information quickly and easily. The following are guidelines only but will give you a good idea of the layout you should be looking for:

1. Start with name and contact details

You do not need to include information on your age or marital status here so just the basics will be fine.

2. Next you should have a profile / objective for your CV

I like to see a short statement on what makes you good for the job you are applying for here. You can also put in a general statement about your skills and abilities in this section though, if it is a more general application. Make sure you adapt this for each job you are applying for though, don't make the mistake of stating you have always dreamed of working in 'X' company when you are sending your CV to 'Y;.

3. Finishing Education? You should include this

If you are more experienced though, you should now lead with your most recent job. Always work from most recent experience first (e.g. Degree - College - School) and remember to include dates of employment down to the month which you started and left.

4. Skills and Experience

Once you have noted your education and employment, you can include some information on your soft skills or other experience. This can include voluntary experience/hobbies etc.

5. References?

It is then your choice whether or not to put references on your CV. Make sure you only put references that you are happy for people to contact on your CV.

6. Last checks

Your CV should now look great! Do not rest yet though. My advice is to get somebody with great attention to detail to have a good look at it next. Some spelling errors can slip through your spell check system and can cause you real problems down the line.

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