Codiekinz' Top Tips for CV Writing Success!
Major nerd alert: I LOVE rewriting people’s CVs. I think it’s the same principle as tidying someone else’s room. Doing yours seems impossible, but something new and unseen is weirdly fulfilling. So last weekend I offered my CV rewriting services as a freebie (or ‘pay what you like’) to get some buzz around them, but to also enable some of my student friends to be able to get their CV looked at without forking over cash. It’s been great and I got a whole load to look over, so I figured I would write a little post about my top tips! Of course I am not an expert and what works for me, might not be what works for you. If you do want me to have a look over your CV, just email firstname.lastname@example.org & I’ll see what I can do!
- Is it relevant? Maybe you were a paperboy at school, but now you’re applying for marketing jobs. Future employers don’t need to know every job you’ve ever done, so culling less important ones gives you more room to talk about the ones that mean something!
- If you’re potentially applying for several jobs in different sectors, consider editing your CV to tailor it to these areas, and perhaps have two or three ready, depending on which job you apply for. For example, if you’re applying for teaching jobs and acting jobs, you can talk up your work with children on one, and your acting experience on the other. That way, you’ll always have a relevant CV and be giving yourself the best chance.
- Ditch that awful email address! email@example.com is not an okay email address to put on your CV, that much should be clear! But even something like firstname.lastname@example.org isn’t great either (even if Harry Potter books are the best thing ever! (which they are!)). Consider setting up an email that just uses your name - you’re a grown-up, don’t let an email address let you down!
- Don’t put a picture on it. No matter how hot you are, it’s just unnecessary. Also, research shows that a lot of companies discard CVs with a picture incase they are accused of picking someone based on their physical appearance.
- Leave the negativity. Never, ever, ever say you're not good at something. Not even if you follow it with ‘but I’m getting better!”. No! Don’t! If you’re not great at time keeping, just don’t even mention it on your CV and make sure you get better at it!
- Save the manuscript for your novel! Apparently, employers look at a CV for matter of seconds. This is pretty heartbreaking if you spend forever on it but que sera sera! Still, it shouldn’t really be more than two A4 pages. Unless you’re Bill Gates, calm your beans!
- Keep your Linked In up to date! I know it’s the least sexy social network but employers will check it and in some cases you can even use it to apply! On a sort-of-but-not-quite-CV-related-note, be careful what’s on your other social networks. Don’t talk about skiving off work on your Twitter or post pictures of you topless and wasted on Facebook. Or, if you do, put them on private!
- Put references at the bottom. Choose people who love you (in a professional kinda way!) and who would be willing to tell the world how amazing you are. Make sure they’re okay with you sharing their info!
- Talk yourself up! Sell your damn self! That’s the whole point! Now’s not the time to be modest! Of course, don’t be arrogant, that’s not cute, but if you’re great at something - shout about it!
- Get me to do it! * Cheeky plug alert * but seriously! I love writing CVs and I’m trained in personal statement writing! Send me a message if you fancy it!