A CV (curriculum vitae) is an essential part of any job application and can make or break your chances of landing an interview. However, writing one can be challenging, especially if you don’t know how to sell yourself effectively on paper. Use these tips to write a CV that grabs attention and helps get you interviews with top companies around the world!
Making your resume can be tricky. Not only does it have to capture your skills and education, but it also has to stand out from other applicants. A well-crafted resume can get you interviews, and an interview will get you an offer—and it all starts with writing a CV that will catch an employer’s eye. Here are some tips for how to write a CV, so you can start looking for work in no time! The Introduction Paragraph should be up top, summarizing your qualifications. That might sound redundant if you’re reading a CV essay on how to write one, but many resumes are filled with detailed information about each job history—so make sure yours cuts through the fluff by sticking to what really matters. Think back to when you were searching for jobs before: What did you look at first? If your CV doesn’t grab someone’s attention right away, it won’t matter whether or not they have openings in their company; they won’t take any further action with your application. Be clear about what you want.
2) Career Objective
An objective statement is your first chance to make an impression, which is why it’s important to give it some thought. Your objective should be clear and concise, designed for maximum impact. Instead of using cliches like dynamic or fast-paced, tell potential employers what you are looking for in terms of type of position, experience level needed or type of industry. It may sound silly but stay away from having something like I want a job where I can use my skills and experience—this is what hiring managers will assume anyway. Make sure you describe yourself in such a way that indicates your major strengths and character traits.
Include education and experience in reverse chronological order, listing most recent first. List each degree separately; do not combine them. Include all relevant work and internship experience, even if unrelated to your major or career goal. For more details, check out our guide on How to Format Your Resume. Make sure you have a clear purpose for including everything on your CV: you want it to be obvious at a glance why you’re an ideal candidate for any given position. Also make sure you have some white space so that employers can quickly scan through without having to wade through tons of text. One way around that is dividing it into short subsections with subtitles, but that may mean adding extra pages which could bump up against page limits set by prospective employers.
Emphasize your accomplishments and never, ever leave them out of your CV. Job-seekers often list their duties and responsibilities on their resumes (and even their LinkedIn profiles), but employers want to know what you’ve accomplished. No matter how big or small, every achievement—no matter how obvious—should be included on your resume. Because once they start digging into who you are as an employee, employers will look for these things anyway. A great way to accomplish that is by putting all your accomplishments in an Accomplishments section on your CV. Include successes at work, extra-curricular activities at school, internships or anything else that show off some of what you can do. Every accomplishment should be quantified so it gives employers an idea of just how awesome you really are. And keep it up-to-date! Your previous boss doesn’t care if two years ago you completed a rigorous internship program if you have nothing new to report since then.
Good skills will vary by job, but it’s typically smart to write about your best skills. Try not to use passive language (e.g., was responsible for…) when discussing achievements. Active language (e.g., developed an app that increased daily revenues by 30 percent in five months) is more likely to make you stand out from other candidates. For jobs requiring technical skills, highlight any awards or certifications you have. If you have leadership experience—team captain at a sports camp, manager of a small business—mention it here as well. Finally, if you speak another language, mention it on your CV and consider highlighting it in your cover letter.
Given how competitive entry-level positions are these days and how many qualified applicants apply for each job opening, it’s up to you to distinguish yourself and get noticed by hiring managers at companies where you want to work. Of course personality and fit matter most when choosing who will be part of a team—but putting together a great CV is also key. While any good résumé writing service can help you tweak your CV to make sure it showcases your strengths, here are some additional tips for creating an impressive CV that will make people take notice.
The first step in creating a strong curriculum vitae (CV) is understanding why it’s important. The CV plays an important role in today’s talent marketplace because employers need to know what your capabilities are before inviting you for an interview.
6) Honors & Awards
Make sure your resume lists any awards you’ve won or significant honors that have been bestowed upon you. Did you win an award for best science project in middle school? Be sure it’s on your resume! If it isn’t, no worries—as long as you can talk about it in an interview, there is still time to add it. It shows consistency over time, especially when coupled with activities and achievements from high school and college.