A CV (curriculum vitae) is a short list of facts about you and your work history, skills and experience. A good CV is essential when looking for work and it is worth spending time getting it right so it sells you to an employer.
Your CV should
Be neat, typed if possible and to the best standard you can achieve in content and layout
be short, two sides of a sheet of A4 paper is normally enough.
Be positive, it should emphasise your achievements, strengths, successes and how you have contributed to your employers making a profit (add figures to support facts whenever you can and use positive action words, for example: ‘consulting’, ‘negotiating’, ‘managing’ and so on). Make a good impression, this means presenting the facts about yourself in a clear and positive way.
How to use your CV
To apply to companies to see if they have any jobs available. You can send your CV with a covering letter or email asking if they have any current or future vacancies in your trade. You can find names and addresses of companies in newspapers or in trade or telephone directories.
To remind you what you’ve done
You can use your CV to help you remember all the dates and information each time you have to fill in a different application form.
To help with applications by phone
Having your CV handy when applying for jobs by phone can help if you are asked to give more information about previous jobs. If you have hearing or speech difficulties and use textphone or typetalk, having a copy of your CV can cut down the length of time you spend making a call. Having your CV with you while you’re waiting to be called in can help you refresh your memory. It is also handy to leave a copy with the interviewer if they do not already have one.
Registering with recruitment agencies
Agencies may sometimes ask to see your CV before you can register with them.
There is no set format. How you present your CV is up to you. However, you should include at least the following:
– your name
– your address
– your phone number
– your email address (if you have one)
– your career history
Put your most recent job first and include dates. Employers will be more interested in what you have done recently. Don’t leave gaps between dates, because employers will want to know what you did during those periods. If you don’t have much work experience, you could include temporary, holiday, parttime or voluntary jobs too. If you’ve had many different jobs, emphasise the skills and experience you have gained.