Create a CV that stands out and gets you an interview.
A CV is a short, written summary of your skills, achievements and experience which relate to a role you want. You use it in the first stage of applying for jobs. Employers often ask for a CV instead of an application form but sometimes you’ll need both.
It’s your first chance to promote yourself to an employer. A good CV will get you to an interview.
Use it to apply for advertised jobs, or to introduce yourself to employers you’d like to work for. They may have vacancies that aren’t advertised.
Start with the job advert for the role you’re applying for, so you can refer to the:
Think about how your skills and experience match what the employer is looking for and gather the information you’ll need, including:
You should tailor your CV to suit the job description and the company. If the job you’re applying for does not have a job description, you can look at our job profiles to understand the skills you’ll need and the typical things you’ll do in that job.
There are different CV styles, so use the one which best matches the role and the stage you’re at in your life or career.
Your finished CV should be no more than 2 sides of A4 unless it’s an academic CV.
You’ll need to provide details of how employers can get in touch with you if they want to offer you an interview.
You should only include your:
You can also provide a link to your professional networking profile, like LinkedIn.
Do not include your age, date of birth, marital status or nationality.
This is a few short lines that sum up who you are and what you hope to do. It should go just under your name and contact details.
Think about the job you want and what the employer is looking for. Make your profile sound like you’re the right person for the job.
You can add this section after your personal profile if you’re early on in your career, or if you don’t have much work experience. Whatever order you choose, you’ll need to include the:
If you’re older and have had a number of jobs, you might want to change the order and show your work history and skills first.
Include placements, volunteering and any paid jobs you’ve had. You should list these with the most recent first, and include:
Use active words to highlight your strengths and skills, to describe things you’ve done like:
Give positive examples of your achievements rather than just listing responsibilities. Use the STAR method to help.
If you’ve had a lot of jobs, you can use a skills-based CV to group them.
A skills-based CV is useful when you have gaps in your work history. Give examples of skills you’ve developed during the times you were out of work and how you got them.
If you’re applying for your first job, you can focus on skills you’ve learned through:
Try to show the skills you have through your hobbies and interests. Focus on examples that show you have relevant skills for the job.
This section of a CV is useful if you do not have much work experience.
You can leave out the details of your references at this point, or mention that ‘references are available on request’.
The recruiter will ask for these when you get through to the next stage.
Employers get lots of CVs to look at and have to decide quickly who they are going to interview. Here are some tips to make your CV stand out for all the right reasons.
When writing your CV remember to: