Make your CV land an interview

Are you struggling to land that interview and wondering why? There could be several reasons for this and we explore these further in our blog:

Is your personal statement engaging?

You have approximately 6 seconds to grab your reader and get your CV read. Write a snappy introduction stating the industries you have excelled in and skills you can bring to the role. What value do you bring? What is your USP? Make your introduction relevant to the role.

Have you spent time tailoring your CV?

You need to be tailoring your core CV for each job application.  It’s far better to apply for a few jobs well and spend time tailoring your CV for these positions, than to send your CV out on mass.

Tailoring your CV does not need to take long. Spend 30 minutes tweaking your core CV so that it reflects what the employer is looking for and what skills and achievements are of importance to them. Include some of the keywords used in the job description to beat those applicant tracking systems.

Is the contents of your CV relevant?

There is no need to list every single job you have ever held. Keep it relevant to the job you are applying for – what skills and aspects of previous roles are going to help you land this job? Ensure you tell the reader about the most relevant experiences, qualifications, achievements and skills you have early on in your CV. Avoid leaving the best for last as your CV may not be read to the end.

Are you using meaningless soundbites?

It is easy to fall into the trap of reeling off soundbites in your CV and regurgitating the job description. For instance stating that you are a hard-working, team player with excellent attention to detail. This is not going to help you to stand out from the crowd and tells the reader very little about you. 

Instead, take these key words and weave them into your CV in your own words. Go that step further and provide evidence to support these statements, quantifying your skills and achievements where you can.

Is your CV inviting to read? 

Your CV needs to be short, easy and inviting to read. Aim for 1-2 pages. Your CV is essentially your career highlights and a sales pitch, rather than a list of everything you have ever done. Keep paragraphs short, make use of bullet points and utilise white space. A simple, short format will keep your reader happy.

Are you proofreading your CV?

The contents of your CV may be great but spelling and grammar can let you down at the last hurdle and lead to your CV ending up in that ‘no’ pile. Spend time proofreading your CV for spelling, punctuation, grammar and format.   Use a free download like Grammarly to check your grammar, spelling and punctuation as you write.

It’s very easy to overlook these aspects of CV writing but they are quick to remedy.  When you’ve finished writing your CV, imagine you are picking it up for the first time. What jumps out at you? Is that what you intended? What changes do you need to make to pass the five-second glance?

If you’re not sure, ask someone else to review it for you, a fresh pair of eyes may spot what you’ve missed.

These quick tips will help ensure your CV is read and increases your chances of landing that interview.

Need some expert help with your CV?

Our Mastering CVs course makes it easier for you to quickly refresh and update your CV so that you are ready to market your expertise successfully and secure that interview.

We will give you templates and guide you step-by-step through the process of writing your CV. We’ll explain how to structure your CV, what to write for each section, how to handle career gaps and how to tailor your CV for the job you want. We will help you to present yourself successfully as the perfect candidate for the job.

Find out more here: https://bit.ly/careercoachingprogrammes

Book in for a free 20 minute career consultation: https://bit.ly/careerconsultcp

Discover where to look for flexible jobs: https://bit.ly/flexjobsites

By Coaching Partners, Becky Wilding-Jones and Rachel Veal

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