I have learned how to effectively draw key skills from my previous work experience, put it into a clear and concise sentence. I got some really good pointers today to improve on this.  - Undergraduate attending Sian's seminar

Tried and tested help, Step 4

17th April 2012

Welcome back. Its time to make your first stab at writing a CV. 

This exercise is not about the layout or appearance of a CV, I'd just like you to rustle up some strong content in order to have something to arrange on a page later. 

What you do have is a list of skills, tasks or activities that you enjoy doing and you can demonstrate at least 1 example of having achieved positive result in each of these activities. For now, focus on your top 3 examples. and write them out as 3 clear, concise sentences. These sentences should describe clearly what you did to add value to a process, result, service, task, or outcome for your customer or end user. If you can put any sort of number in that sentence, to measure the value you added, then that is a brilliant benefit that will be noticed by a recruiter. 

If this proves hard to describe, try speaking your draft sentences out loud. You may feel a little silly, but this really does help to clarify the right words to capture on paper. Keep talking to yourself until you hear 3 sentences that sound clear, positive and impressive. That's when you know that you have discovered the heart of your CV.

The next piece of content to tackle is a personal statement. Try asking yourself this question: Who are you and what have you got to offer your next employer? There is more detailed help on this question in my forthcoming book, available from the end of April. 

 Keep polishing those descriptions of your achievements, in the next tip, I'll guide you through some presentation rules.

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