7 steps to create an impactful CV

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

 

This month Paul gives some great tips for writing a CV with impact.

Easy on the eye 
The visual appearance of a CV is extremely important. A cluttered CV won’t make a good first impression. Use uniform font style throughout your CV. Use font size 11 or 12 (font size 9 or 10 is cheating). Ensure you leave ample white space throughout your CV. Insert clear headers to signpost the reader and use bullet points to enable easier navigation of the content. 

Immediate impact 
Create a strong value statement. Avoid generic words and statements. Focus on relevant points and concrete achievements. Your value statement should be no longer than five snappy one line bullet points. 

Less is more 
No CV should creep beyond two pages. Many people struggle to achieve this objective. Stop focusing on yourself and start focusing on the person reading the document. Ask yourself the question “Is this RELEVANT information for the reader?” This question will help you cut back excess content. 

One page wonder 
Your CV will be binned if the first page fails to make an impact. Most recruiters spend as little as 20 seconds reviewing a CV. You need to position as much relevant information on the first page of your CV. Help the reader make that decision to call you to interview. 

Stardust 
Most job seekers find it difficult to sell themselves effectively. Job seekers struggle to recall key successes or achievements. This information is critical. Your achievements are the stardust that brings your CV content to life. Invest time and effort here - brainstorm, hunt out old performance reviews or talk to an ex-manager. 

Social CV 
Add your Linkedin profile URL to your CV. A Linkedin profile has the potential to offer richer content than a CV. 

Other points you’d like to make 
The “Additional Information” section will be positioned towards the end of your CV. This section allows you to include other points that may interest the reader. These points don’t warrant first page status but can still add value. 

Paul Mullan is founder of Career & Outplacement Firm Measurability. Services include Outplacement, Interview Coaching, Job Search Support, Linkedin Training, CV Writing, and Personal Branding.