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Job Hunting Tips - Writing The Perfect CV - Part 2
The first part of this article focused on not making your CV too long, making sure your CV is in the right order and why you should personalise your CV for every job application. The second part will focus on the content for your CV including Personal Details, Personal Profile, Employment Experience, Educational Qualifications, Additional Training and Personal Interests.
1) Personal Details
Your CV should start off with your name in big lettering, at the top centre of the page. There is no need to also include ‘CV’ or ‘Curriculum Vitae’ as it is obvious what the document is intended for.
Your personal contact details should be next, but not take up too much room. If necessary, use a smaller font and position them towards the top corner of the page.
2) Personal Profile
Your Personal Profile should be no longer than five lines long, be written in the third person, and give an accurate overview of your employment and educational experience as well as appearing objective while subtly selling your relative attributes for a particular position.
3) Employment Experience
As discussed in the first part of this article, your employment experience should generally be featured before your educational background. Examples of when this is not the case includes recent graduates in a relevant degree as well as positions where a specific degree or qualification is essential.
When listing each place of employment, the employer name, month of employment starting and finishing and a one or two line overview of the employer should be included. Following that, the job title of the position should be highlighted above 5 bullet points describing the role.
Specific aspects of the role should be highlighted in the bullet points that are pertinent to a specific new position. Each bullet point should be no longer than 2 lines in length.
4) Educational Qualifications
Start with the most recent qualification. List the month and year that the qualification started and finished, the establishment where the qualification was undertaken, the location of the place of study and the qualification gained. There is no need to list additional information such as the modules studied within a programme unless specifically asked to do so.
High school qualifications should only be listed if you finished school within the past five years or a qualification is extremely relevant for a job role. (Such as typing speed when applying for a secretarial position.)
5) Additional Training
Any additional training qualifications should only be listed if they are pertinent to the position applied for. If you don’t have any additional qualifications then don’t bother with the ‘Additional Training’ heading.
6) Personal Interests
The final section at the bottom of the second page of your CV should cover your personal interests. In this section you have to tread the thin line between demonstrating that your personal interests influence you positively by giving you a varied perspective on life and seeming too unusual to fit in with the existing personnel.
In addition, be careful not to include information that is too personal in this section. Although you may be proud of your spouse and children, by including their names you may diminish the perception of you as a professional candidate.
There is no need to include the commonly featured ‘references’ section at the bottom of a CV. It is assumed that relevant references will be made available should an offer of employment be made. In addition, assuming that you have some good referees, you should consider this information to be private as there is no need to take the chance of a prospective employer contacting your referees without the intention of making an offer of employment (which can be made subject to references anyway).
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