A straightforward guide that helps the student tell their story in a way employers understand. It even helped a 49 year old Mum update her CV!  - Mother of a 6th former

The top three tips for a successful CV

4th November 2014

I've received a special request from Jess for this month's blog theme: the top three tips to make sure your CV nails that job! As an experienced recruiter, I'm trying to select the best from the rest, so how do I quickly pick out those best CVs?

Firstly, I'm looking for focus; have you done your homework and made sure that you're highlighting the experience that you know I'm most interested in? When you're a Nail That Job candidate, you have researched your target organisation thoroughly. You understand their culture, products, services, clients, suppliers and aims. You can recite the job description in your sleep and describe some shining examples of when you have demonstrated that you possess the core skills that they are looking for.

The second vital ingredient for a successful CV is clarity: clarity of content and appearance. Clear content means that you have focused on what the recruiter is looking for: expand on the most relevant areas of your work experience and contract the least relevant. A clear, uncluttered appearance can only come from ruthless proof-reading; make sure you leave plenty of white space so that whether I read a screen or paper version of your CV, it looks attractive and spacious.

The third tip for a succcessful CV is to catch the recruiter's interest. This is perhaps harder to manage, but making sure you have clarity and focus will give you a helping hand here! I'm looking for a little spark: a comment, experience, achievement or impact for customers that makes me take notice and decide that you'll be worth spending some time to interview. The most useful technique after clarity and focus to create interest is to have a tangible result to showcase. If you made something new, with fewer resources, to a higher standard, with less waste, at lower cost, attracted more positive customer feedback or fewer complaints, then I'm interested!

You'll find lots more ideas on creating a successful CV in my book: Nail That Job, the complete guide for the less experienced jobseeker.



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