Anyone who is unemployed and in the job marketing knows that applying for a job can be a daunting task, or even worse, having to document their work history. Although performance during an interview is key, CV is the first step towards securing a job, even before you can be invited to an interview. Ultimately, it will leave a potential employer wanting to engage you based on your experience and the requirements of the job you have applied for. If you are in the market or looking to apply for another job, here are 5 tips on how to make sure you submit a CV that sets you apart and can be considered at first glance:
- Properly highlight your work experience
- Don’t underestimate the power of an intro on your cv
- Don’t copy and paste the advert of your current job on your cv
- Make sure you look at the job advert content and not just the purpose and title
- Don’t attach unnecessary documents to the initial application, unless it was part of the submission requirements.
Properly highlight your work experiences
Very often candidates make the mistake of not appropriately highlighting their work experience by listing the core functions of their previous or current role instead of properly articulating it. i.e. Performance Management, Recruitment, rewards etc. When you do that, you are expecting the prospective employer to guess what your specific role was under each of those functions. It is important to state what your role was in relation to that, which would provide the prospective employer an opportunity to see just how much you have been exposed to.
Don’t underestimate the power of an intro on your CV
Put a brief summary as part of the first page of your cv. Note, I used the words brief and as part of the first page and not the whole page. A summary gives the recruiter a quick update about what you have done or competent in and how it relates to the job you applied for. That will also save the recruiter the time of having to go search for the advert requirements on your CV. Sometimes, the job you are applying for is largely what you did in your previous roles and not current, therefore if the recruiter isn’t coming across those familiar requirements at first glance, they are more likely to miss it if it’s not reflected in the recent work experience.
Don’t copy and paste the advert of your current job on your CV
When it comes to your CV, put your best foot forward and do away with laziness. Most people struggle to articulate what they do, so in turn they copy and paste the job requirements of their current role from an existing advert. Believe me, how a job is written versus how a career history is documented on the CV, no matter how minor the variance, there will always be a difference. You are denying yourself an opportunity to fully highlight your real contribution in how you have come to define your current role. An advert merely stipulates the primary functions of the role at a high level, whereas a CV articulates the contribution against the requirements of the job.
Make sure you look at the job advert content and not just the purpose and title
A lot of times, people see the title and immediately apply for the role without truly reading it line by line and check what the job content entails. Most of these times it’s because, the title is the same as their current one, and they assume the job requirements are also the same. That could be true, however it’s important to see how the potential employer had phrased their requirements. This will help you to review your CV and compare how you have phrased your experience and provide you an opportunity to make amendments where required. These amendments are not to say that you are cheating the system, as sometimes you find that, you have done exactly what they want, but you didn’t phrased it like that on the cv.
Don’t attach unnecessary documents to the initial application, unless it was part of the submission requirements
Unless there was a specific requirement that as part of the application process, you must submit ID copies, certificates, I would suggest you don’t. You are unnecessarily making your application busy and it becomes worse when the attachments are not even labelled. This would mean the recruiter has to open all those attachments to get to the document they are looking for. Very few recruiters have time to review CV’s in detail, let alone multiple unnecessary attachments from candidates. Once you make it through to the interview, and getting shortlisted, certificates and ID copes will be needed to do qualification, credit and criminal checks. Until then, there is really no need for those documents.