CV Writing

Your Curriculum Vitae (CV) is the document you use to sell yourself to potential employers. It should reflect your skills and experience in the best light, whilst remaining accurate and truthful.

Length

When looking for new staff, employers may be inundated with CVs, and hence have very limited time to look at each one. They may only have 30-60 seconds to look at each CV and take in the relevant points.

Keep it Concise

Therefore your CV should be concise, but must not underplay your skills and experience. Try to keep all relevant information within 2 sides of A4.

Be brief and factual about skills and experience gained, and about duties and responsibilities held in any job Key skills and achievements should be highlighted. Keep paragraphs of prose, and discussions of feelings and working relationships with others to a minimum.

Layout

Your name, contact details and brief personal information should be at the top of the CV. This sets the scene for potential employers.

The generally preferred style for CVs is that Employment History and Education/Qualifications should be presented in reverse chronological order. In this way potential employers can easily see the most recent skills and experience gained.

Education and Academic qualifications should be kept together. It is useful for potential employers to know which qualifications were gained at what School, College or University.

If potential employers are looking for job applicants with work experience, they will be most interested in the Employment History section of your CV. If this is the case it should come before the Education & Qualifications section.

Employers who are more interested in recent graduates or their academic experience & qualifications will want to see the Education & Qualifications section before Employment History.

Make sure there are no time gaps in your employment or education history. Periods of unemployment or travel are acceptable and understandable in the modern world. These should be included.

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