Career Tools - Interview Winning CV
How to Write an Interview Winning CV
In order to maximise your job hunt success, you need an impressive CV that will compel recruiters to contact you, and ultimately invite you to interview stage. Obviously everybody's CV will be unique but there are cross-industry CV writing guidelines that you should stick to if you want to ensure that the interview requests keep coming in. The guide and infographic below from leading Professional CV Writing company Stand-Out CV; show the essentials of writing an effective CV
Structure is extremely important when preparing your CV. Recruiters and hiring managers tend to be very busy people; therefore you need to make it as easy as possible for them to read your CV so they can quickly find the information that is relevant to their vacancies. Use similar sections and headings to those in the infographic above and make sure that everything is clearly laid out using a simple font.
Break information up so that it is easily digestible and use bullet points in your role descriptions - Avoid big chunks of text and keep the CV between two and three pages in length.
A short and sharp profile at the top of your CV can really grab a recruiter's attention when done properly. Ideally your profile should be around 3-6 lines, giving a high level overview of your skills, experience and knowledge whilst demonstrating how they can benefit a potential employer. Keep it factual, avoid cliché phrases and really sell yourself. This is the first thing a recruiter or employer will see so it needs to be packed with the skills and experience that they will be looking for.
Your role descriptions give you an excellent opportunity to showcase exactly what value you can bring to an employer; so take the time to craft them properly and ensure that you highlight the experience that will be important in the jobs you are applying for. Start each role with a brief outline of the employer's work, where you sit within the organisation and what the overall goal of your role is - this builds context for the reader and gives them an idea of the level you work at. Then list your responsibilities in bullet points and try to show how they benefit the employer where possible. Some of the important factors that recruiters look for are listed below so make sure you work them into your responsibilities;
* People you interact with; e.g. Customers, management, suppliers, contractors, regulators etc
* Tools & software packages used
* Product/service knowledge
* Work produced; Depending on your profession this could be Anything from reports, design work or web applications through to physical products like buildings or cars
* Environments you work in: e.g. busy sales floor, high profile government building etc.
Your current and recent roles should have lots of detail because recruiters will be very keen to know about your recent work but you can summarise older roles as they won't be too interested in work from several years ago
If you really want to make an impression on recruiters then be sure to back your claims up with some impressive numbers.
Add an achievement section to the end of your roles and give some examples of how your work has greatly impacted your employer. These will differ depending on your industry but here are some generic examples:
* Reduced departmental spend by 10% through rigorous supplier negotiations
* Exceeded sales targets by 120% and generated £300k in first year
* Successfully migrated 1,000 users onto new system with zero service disruption
Be sure to triple check your CV for grammatical errors before sending it to anybody and ensure that the tone is as professional as you can make it - it only takes one mistake for a recruiter to start doubting your credibility. When writing your CV, the most important thing to remember is that you must show the reader that you are suitable for their job vacancy if you want an interview - so ensure that you highlight the skills and knowledge that recruiters are typically asking for in the job adverts that you are responding to.
Author: Andrew Fennell is the Director of London based CV Writing Service - StandOut CV