Writing a CV Tips

Basic Format for a CV.

  • Personal details, including name, address, phone number, email address and possibly any professional social media presence. You no longer need to include your date of birth, owing to age discrimination rules
  • Career history, starting with your most recent job first. Include dates and temporary or voluntary jobs if appropriate
  • A personal profile which sells yourself and your qualities, tailored towards the job you are applying for
  • Achievements from previous jobs that are relevant
  • Qualifications and training from previous jobs, with the most recent first
  • Interests, if they are relevant and especially if the skills or teamwork concerned are relevant for the job
  • Any extra information, such as reasons for a career change or reasons for gaps in career history, such as caring duties
  • References, ideally two or more and including a recent employer

Many people think that one CV will fit all applications, but it needs to be a very targeted document for the role they are going for. Do some research so you understand what employers are looking for.

How Long Should My CV Be?

There are no absolute rules but, in general, a new graduate’s CV should cover no more than two sides of A4 paper. If you can summarise your career history comfortably on a single side, this is fine and has advantages when you are making speculative applications and need to put yourself across concisely.

However, you should not leave out important items, or crowd your text too closely together in order to fit it onto that single side. Always read through your final written CV, ask someone else to check it for you as well. Spelling and grammar are an important element.

Avoid using ‘text speak’ ie, Thank U, 2morow, etc.