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While we make every effort to accurately represent your personality strengths and other soft skills to potential employers as part of your personal profile, your CV undoubtedly remains a fundamental tool in securing your next ideal career move. From getting the basics right to achieving the ideal layout, our top CV writing tips below will help ensure your CV stands out from the crowd for all the right reasons.

pink CV document icon TOP TIP #1: GET THE BASICS RIGHT

Knowing how to craft the perfect CV can be a daunting task. However, starting by including the following information will put you on the right track:

Contact information - email, telephone numbers and address.
Descriptive personal profile - sell yourself.
Education and qualifications.
Key skills.
List your job history in reverse chronological order.
Interests and hobbies should be factual.

pink icon showing two pages of a CV document on top of one another TOP TIP #2: GET THE LAYOUT RIGHT

Your CV is the first opportunity to show an employer that you're the best fit for their role. Your application is likely to be amongst hundreds of others so make sure you get it right first time.

Place important information relevant to the role up front such as key skills and qualifications.
State references available on request rather than detailing.
Try and keep it to two A4 pages.
Don't include photos
Secondary education (GCSEs/A-levels) should be after experience.

pink tick in a circle icon TOP TIP #3: ALWAYS TELL THE TRUTH

Dates and job titles must be correct as they are often cross-checked in the referencing process.
Interviewers will be able to pick up on giveaway body language when discussing your experince.
If you get the job, it may then be very difficult to succeed in that role. Your lies could set you up to fail.
It's fraud! Companies can take legal action against you depending on the severity.
Leave off anything you are not proud of rather than falsify information.

pink calculator icon with three numbers TOP TIP #4: DO THE MATHS

Use facts and figures to quantify your experience and tip detail your achievements.

If you raise invoices, detail the number you have dealt with at your busiest time, showing your capability.
If you work in sales, detail the percentage of growth of your success and how you ranked within the team.
How much money have you made your employer?
How much money have you saved your employer?
Big numbers Arte good but make sure they are realistic and factual.

Pink lightbulb icon lines shining out the bulb TOP TIP #5: BUZZWORD BASICS

As well as carefully selecting a recruitment agency to represent you, upload your CV to job sites so that other companies can find you too. Your details will be accessed via a search engine by entering keywords that match your CV.

Keep job titles industry standard specific so the search engines can match your CV easily.
Search online for buzzwords and phrases that describe the duties and skills popular within your role.
Populate your CV with subject related information and qualifications.
Detail the job title you are looking to gain within your personal statement.

Pink lightbulb icon lines shining out the bulb TOP TIP #6: PRESENTATION IS KEY

Your CV is designed to showcase you ability. This is your chance to make a great impression and stand out from the crowd. Take the time to ensure your CV is aesthetically pleasing and easy to understand. Ultimately, this document needs to be something you are proud of.

Use bullet points to separate long paragraphs.
Use the full page to maximise on space.
Double space lines between roles and to separate sections of your CV.
Use a font size no bigger than '12'.
Use a professional font.

If you are applying for a creative role then forget all of the above and get creative!

Pink clock icon showing 9 o'clock TOP TIP #7: KEEP IT CURRENT AND RELEVANT

Your CV should always reflect the here and now. Keep it up to date whether you are looking for a new role or not. That way you will always be prepared should you decide to look for a new role.

List the jobs in reverse chronological order.
Only list your most recent and relevant roles.
Expand information on your jobs that are relevant and minimise the roles not relevance to your application.
Stay up to date by adding to your CV every time something significant happens in your career.

Pink pencil icon for writing on a CV TOP TIP #8: DON'T LEAVE GAPS

Your CV should be used to describe your employment situation and leave no questions in the mind of your prospective employer.

Detail your start and finish dates of each role, expanding on months and years.
If there are any gaps, what were you doing? Travelling? Providing care? Or simply unemployed?
Put a positive spin on periods of unemployment. Did you complete a course or do any volunteer work?

Pink clipboard icon with three tickboxes TOP TIP #9: TAILOR IT

If you are applying to jobs online, you will need to do your best to stand out from the crowd. Take the time to make your CV 100% relevant. Employers are often looking for specific skillsets.

Think about the skills required to perform within the role and then expand on key examples in your CV.
Change your personal profile to mention the role you are applying for.
When using bullet points, move your most relevant experience for that role to the top.
Research the company vision and mission statement to identify suitable attributes to include.

Pink warning icon showing exclamation mark in pink triangle TOP TIP #10: CHECK FOR ERRORS

Your have put so much time and effort into making your CV a document that you are truly proud of, so don't fall at the last hurdle! Spelling and grammatical errors will often mean that an employer will reject your application straight away... no matter how great the content is.

Ensure language settings on spell check are set to UK.
Spell check your document using F7.
Ask a couple of friends or family members to double check spelling and grammar.
Do a final check on all contact details, telephone numbers and email addresses.

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