In a candidate market, the first thing to remember is that there may be one job opening with 100 applicants; therefore, it is vital your application stands out from the competition. A hiring manager may only have a couple of minutes to look over your CV so ensuring the below is included will go a long way to helping you get that all-important new job.
1. Concise summary
The opening sentences on your CV are the most significant as this is their first impression of you! This is your opportunity to sell yourself to the employer, highlight your relevant skills and summarise the experience you possess. It is important you include the following:
- A key achievement in your industry
- Recent work history
- Specialist skills
2. Including the necessary skills & software experience
If a hiring manager requests knowledge of using a specific program, then you must document this, and your skills should be clearly listed on your CV. The hiring manager needs to be able to find what they are looking for in the first few seconds, to want to read more.
Making sure you include a rundown of the skills you possess and incorporate relevant skills from the job description you have ensures the hiring manager that you have the relevant skill set they need to fill the roll.
A good list of skills to have:
- A keen eye for detail
- Enjoy working within a team
- Strong written and verbal skills
- Excellent communicator
- Confident with Microsoft applications
3. Relevant experience and achievements
Experience needed for a role depends on the organisation. No matter what level of the role you are applying for you must be able to demonstrate relevant and transferable experience on your CV to have the best chance of getting the job.
You should always state how long you have worked at an organisation for, but your priority should be focusing on the achievements that you acquired in the role. For example, it could be changes to the running of an organisation, a high level of satisfaction with a low level of errors, or improvements you made to the team which impacted on their efficiency.
Struggling to think of achievements? Mention something of which you are especially proud of in a previous job or something you achieved while in education.
Also, if you possess a qualification or an accreditation in your industry, then make sure to mention this. Hiring managers often desire this; however, many businesses will offer learning and development opportunities to gain such qualifications.
4. Display that you can work well with others
Working within a team will involve daily interaction with others. Whether this is done via email, phone, or face to face, you must be able to make a good impression on both colleagues and clients.
Rather than just stating ‘Excellent team skills’ on your CV, good hiring managers will look for evidence of this. Make sure you include examples of this in your achievement section or experience section of your CV. For example, were you the person that mediated conflict when your team was working under pressure? If so, writing something like this ‘’because of my ability to listen to others and mediate conflict, me and my team were able to complete our task on time and accurately, despite the issues that had arisen within the team’’
This is important as it gives the employer an idea of how you work, and they can picture how well you will fit in with the rest of the team. If you can provide a cover letter in your application, then it is always best to do so and display examples of great teamwork there!
5. Would you be a good fit?
It can be difficult for the employer to gauge whether you would be a good fit just by looking at your CV but if you find there is space then make sure to include a section about yourself. Sharing some interests, you may have will provide colleagues with some clues to help the employer understand you better, if you have anything in common with them and whether you will have a good relationship with the team.
Bonus Tip! – Do you ACTUALLY have good attention to detail?
If there are grammatical errors in your application or spelling mistakes, then perhaps your attention to detail is not as strong as you may believe. You would be surprised how many perfectly competent individuals have had an application rejected due to a typo! So, to avoid any disappointment, once you have created your CV, make sure to proofread it for any errors.
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