In this current age of economic meltdown, jobs are fewer on the ground and there’s mass competition for jobs that are advertised. Being a resident of sunny Manchester pretty much means that I will seldom get a look in. That isn’t me adopting a negative attitude (at least not wittingly) but it is me realising that I am competing against at least 300 other applicants for every position I apply for! We are under more pressure than ever to make our CV’s – the first point of contact – stand to attention to get to interview stage, at least.
This is a situation I have found myself in several times. Constantly amending my current CV to make it look worthy of at least being looked through by potential employers. There is a lot of CV writing ‘rules’ that have become clichéd advice that many of us have tried to adhere to, no matter how ridiculous they fundamentally are! Here are a few:
Your CV shouldn’t be more than 2 pages long: Some career advisors think that this is a hard and fast rule for everyone whether you are a school-leaver or a senior executive near the top of your chosen career-ladder. The more work-experience you have, the more this is going to be a restriction. The only way to include all your relevant information is to decrease your font size to 1pt! But this is a rule of thumb and it should be judged entirely on the quality of the content in your CV. It is fine for your CV to be 3 or 4 long if the information in it is relevant to the position you are applying for.
‘Reasons for leaving’ must be included in your employment history: Not true! There isn’t any need to do the dirty laundry if it hasn’t been seen! Your CV is supposed to be a positive portrayal of yourself and the skills that you have obtained from various experiences that could help you to perform your next job well. Information on why you left previous positions is peripheral information that is sometimes requested in application forms and interviews. When prompted, explain your reasons carefully. It’s not a good idea to say that you left your last job because your manager kept giving you a hard time due their impartiality to you turning up to work in speedos and nothing else!
References must be included: This isn’t true. This is personal contact information that shouldn’t be made available unless the employer is considering employing you! A standard line to put in your CV, possibly at the end, is “references available on request”.
Something to remember about CV templates
There are a lot of generic templates littering up cyber-space, and prospective employers are wise to this. It is easy to spot the crossover in narrative voices in your CV writing where you weave in your own annotations of your occupational or educational information into the text in the sample document that you are working from. This gives your CV a dual persona that employers can pick up upon. The sample document is there as a guideline; not as an almost finished CV that you can ad-lib to. If it looks like you haven’t made any effort with your CV writing then you may come across as unconfident, or worse; incompetent.
So if you’re bogged down with the whole CV writing agenda, it would be a good move to AppleCopywriting Ltd compile your CV for you. All you need to do is give some of your education and employment history and the rest will be done for you in a way that will engage prospective employers!