Useful tips on how to write the perfect CV.

Writing a successful CV has its challenges, especially when the aim is to target a specific job opening or employment sector.

The following information is a guide on how to write a CV that exhibits your character and professional skills to their full potential, which will be your one-way ticket to secure a position, may it be part-time, full-time or freelance work. The key to writing a good CV is your ability to demonstrate that you are a well-rounded character with the right skills and potential in the field, always keeping in mind the job you are applying for. Your profile will be viewed as the introduction to who you are and what makes you the ideal candidate for the job. It is also the information placed at the start of your CV, making it vital to locking in the interest of the person who will be reading it. Important points to keep in mind when writing your profile is to strike the right balance between personal and professional skills.

The aim of your profile is to highlight those skills that run-in line with the requirements of the position, making sure to always link it back to personal characteristics providing you with the right attributes for the job. Personal skills also include your attention to detail, organizational as well as managerial skills. A great attribute crucial to your CV is the languages you speak and your cultural understanding too, therefore it should be included either in your basic information or within your profile.  In the case of a general CV, where your aim may not be to target a specific job, it is important to write about your personal strengths and generalise them to fit any job description. One of the most fundamental aspects of your CV should be your knowledge of team work and self-initiation – this will portray you as a candidate with strong social skills.

First impressions of your CV will be the most important, therefore font choices and layout are crucial elements. Bear in mind that the reader wants to gain a basic understanding of who you are simply from scanning over the first page.

Basic Information

Your basic information should appear first on your CV, including your full name, current address, date of birth, nationality and the languages you speak fluently. It is crucial to include a photograph of yourself, which will accompany the basic information at the top of your CV. This will give the reader a brief idea about who you are and set the tone for the rest of your CV. Your photograph should be professional but friendly.

Qualifications

May they be academic or non-academic, if they relate well to the job description or key skills you have touched on throughout your profile it is worth putting into your CV. Make sure to include when you started and finished as well as where these were obtained, in order from most recent.

Work Experience

Including a short description of the job role and the skills you acquired will boost your CV as this will allow you to elaborate and provide context to the reader. It is also vital to mention any major projects you worked on or significant achievements. Again, make sure to include the start and finish dates as well as where you worked, in order from most recent.

Education

Include where you undertook your primary and secondary education as well as any certificates you may have obtained during your secondary education such as GCSE’s (or the equivalent) and your A-Levels (or the equivalent). Most importantly, include any college/university courses or degrees you may have done. Your education should be in order from most recent.

Your Hobbies and Interests

This will give the person reading your CV a better idea of you as a person, not just as a candidate. Writing about your hobbies is an integral section within your CV. It will give a broader picture of other skills you may have unrelated to the job requirements that will improve the overall aura of your CV and fill in the gaps about your personal life. The interests section will demonstrate your intellect and help express your understanding of different topics.

References

These are considered most crucial to any good CV. It is important to make the right choices about who you decide to include as a reference, as these will be the people that will influence the decision of the person hiring you or not hiring you. Contact your references beforehand to make sure they will talk positively about you or better yet, write you a reference. Having both an academic as well as a character reference will make your CV stand out.

And remember, everyone has a unique selling point, so use yours to your advantage.