The Best Ways to Improve your CV
- Annabelle Slator
- On 30th January 2015
Your ideal career, everything you could ever dream of in your professional life can be made or destroyed by your CV.
Your application is the employer’s first evidence of your existence, so if you want to make a lasting impression… You better read our guide to the best ways to improve your CV:
What sort of job are you applying for? Research the crap out of it. This is time consuming but it is worth it. Even if you’re applying to ten jobs, it will help you gain a wider understanding of the industry and help you if you end up getting an interview.
Use your new knowledge to adapt your application to suit each job. A lot of people just change up their cover letter but it is worth looking over your CV too. Emphasizing certain aspects of a previous job could add you onto the interview list.
Some larger companies and recruitment sites use keyword software to filter appropriate applications. Using key words like initiative, friendly, confident and communication skills could put you in the right pile.
Creating a Master CV is very important. This is a fail safe document including everything you have ever done ever. You can then pick and choose which bits are relevant to the job you’re applying for. And remember; life experience can be equally as impressive as work experience, so don’t forget to include it.
Go against the British stereotype and brag like you have never bragged before. Your experience and skills are important, so never dumb them down.
Including your achievements doesn’t make you look like a dick, it proves that you are a successful human being.
Listing what you actually did and how it helped the company can go a long way. Say, for example, you ran the social media accounts at your local hairdressers, how many followers did they gain because of you? What may not seem like a big deal to you could highlight valuable skills (and results) that the employer is looking for. Which leads us onto our next point….
Keeping a diary of your work experience makes it SO MUCH EASIER to create a CV.
It doesn’t have to be a ‘dear diary, today I saw the cutest boy at my internship and he smiled at me and then I went to lunch with my new work friend Lauren and it was so fun’… just set aside five minutes after work to write down bullet points of what you did that day.
It doesn’t even have to be huge things everyday, all those little achievements and experiences will add up to something you can flesh out on your CV.
This one is mostly for graduates: include your GCSEs and A Levels. Showing you have experience with a certain subject could put you ahead of every other person with a degree also applying for that job. You can never be 100% certain of every skill an employer is looking for. Your random A Level in Ethics and Philosophy that you took because you couldn’t think of anything else to do may actually come in handy!
Keep it clean
Nope, this is not what you think. We’re talking about layout. Minimalist is often the best course of action, let your experience and skills speak for themselves. Simple things like font can change the employer’s feelings about your application. And never go smaller than font size 10, unless you’re planning on providing a magnifying glass.
Do not use three words where one will do.
But our number one, super obvious CV tip is….
GET SOMEONE ELSE TO READ IT BEFORE YOU SEND IT OFF!
A blatant spelling mistake on a CV immediately gives the employer the wrong impression of you. You have spell check and you probably know other English-speaking humans, there is no excuse.