Simple Techniques For Improving Your CV
Free tips for helping to make a CV by an international employment agency.
3 simple techniques that will help make your CV structured, organised, and overall better rounded.
Making a CV can be a difficult process, especially when you really want the job you are applying for, you tend to over sell yourself.
Excel Aviation as a recruitment and employment agency has come across thousands of CVs:
Good ones, bad ones, and ones that make us pull our hair out (what is left of it.)
We have gathered together the best tips for improving your CV.
What a recruiter is looking for and what they don't like from a CV.
First, Template Layout
As a recruitment agency, it is our job to look at hundreds of CVs and it can be overwhelming.
A good CV is one that would make a recruiters job easier:
Have your contact and personal details at the top of the page (This is one of the most common annoyances a recruiter has when filtering through CVs.)
Under your details put your qualification (What degrees you have, the licenses and exams you passed.)
Put your past work experience in chronological order (Meaning put your latest job first and your first job last.)
Do not waste space by writing half sentences and leaving the right hand side 'blank.' Add columns into your CV to eliminate this happening. Example:
Secondly, what to include in your CV:
Your CV is a sales pitch about you.
This doesn't mean write down every bit of detail about your life, like your first job on your uncles farm or your summer job picking strawberries.
Do not try to over sell yourself.
A sales pitch should be short, precise, informative, and direct.
That means stating what skills you learned in your previous employments in one word or a short sentence.
I have listed below the type of information Excel Aviation as a recruitment agency wants to find in a CV:
Contact and personal details (This SHOULD include: Full Name, Phone number, email address, and home address.)
Previous work experience (Your latest work experience at the top in chronological order.)
Education (Any education you have acquired: School, College, University.)
Any other projects (This is where a recruiter will differentiate you from another candidate, we will look into this later on in this post.)
Skills (with evidence,) Achievements, and Awards should be included in your CV (A recruiter likes to see what skills you know you have, what achievements you have earned, and awards you have won, if any.)
Volunteer work (Recruiters try to find out your personality from what they read in your CV. 80% of recruiters say they value volunteering work over hobbies and travel.)
There is always one area of a CV where PANIC sets in and that is the 'skills' section. All I can say is don't panic.
Every job, project, experience will have taught you a unique skill. I have listed below a few skills that are most common among CV's.
*Make sure the skills you list in your CV are relevant to you and your experience.
day-to-day supervision of store.
health and safety responsibilities.
customer service experience.
manual labour certificate.
delegating tasks to team members.
writing policy documents.
working in a team.
working on your own initiative.
preparing funding proposals.
finding creative approaches to solving problems / budget limitations / lack of coffee.
When writing your skills section a tip would be to sit down with another person.
You will be surprised as to how this exercise can make you think more widely.
Another tip for your skills is to say what your wrote out loud.
For example, if you wanted to say you are good at working as part of a team you would say "Excellent team worker."
Say that out loud. It doesn't really tell me as a recruiter that you actually are a good team worker. How are you? What experience of team working have you done?
Instead you could say "Work excellent as part of a team - worked as a team in a large manufacturing firm "Manufacturer's name" and liaised with collaborators across Ireland." Examples give weight to your claims.
Thirdly, Common mistakes people make with their CVs.
There are a few common mistakes people make that are easily fixed, all it takes is a little more attention to detail:
No longer than 2 sheets of A4 paper.
No spelling mistakes (My school teacher would hit me over the back of the hand for this.)
Do not send your CV as a image. Send it is a pdf or word document ('.jpeg' images of a cv do not print well and may distort the information for the recruiter.)
Simple, clear formatting (As described in the first step.)
Keep your CV concise (Short sentences, rather than long descriptive ones.)
Don't lie (You will be caught out, when the recruiter ask's about the time you "endeavoured to help a charity out of the kindness of your heart.")
Name the type machinery or software you used in previous work (If you used EPOS systems in a shop or have experience using Microsoft Excel/Word.)
AND remember to Keep It Simple and Short.
This can be an area that helps you stand out from the crowd in regards to experience you have gained.
An example of a good project you could of embarked on is;
"While I was training to become a mechanic, I was fixing broken cars in my shed at home. Repairing body panels and spray painting them to their original colour."
This shows the recruiter two things;
1) It demonstrate's that you had an interest in the job you were training for, as well as initiative to practice and learn on your own time.
2) As well as completing his mechanic apprenticeship, the recruiter now knows that they have additional experience repairing body panels and spray painting.
Additional tips for getting hired: Social Media Accounts.
97% of employers will google your name before they hire you.
Don't think they don't look at your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn because they do.
Wouldn't you if you were to hire someone?
The best way to find out a persons true personality before interviewing them or hiring them is to check out what they are like socially (on their social networks.)
If someone were to look at your Facebook profile pictures, of you in Ibiza drinking the cheapest beer you could find, do you think they would hire you?
They definitely don't say "Now they're a trust worthy, confident individual that I would like to represent my firm."
Finish on this;
These tips and techniques can make your CV more structured and overall better rounded, enough so that the recruiter might actually consider hiring you.
When you think you've finished your CV, get a trusted friend to read over it for 30 seconds - after which ask them what they remember most from it.
You will then know what stands out the most and what you will need to improve (be it wording or layout.)