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Writing a resume help

Image: Improve your CV

I have been reading through all of the articles that have been submitted so far and have been impressed by the quality and depth they contain. However all so far have focused entirely on business projects and startup ideas and although this is the websites main aim, I wanted the services of the website to encompass careers advice for younger people and also general advice for people working in private companies. This is really why I added the forums section.

So I have decided to write an article helping people improve writing a resume. Perhaps some of the more natural entrepreneurs among you will use this article as a basis of setting up your own private CV writing company (low costs, can be done online, no qualifications needed, no age limit and lots of demand).

These are the things I recommend doing in order to improve your chances of getting a job.

1)    Look over your CV and check grammar and spelling, Obvious I know but I have had to check CV’s from job applicants when working for a small company and it is truly unbelievable how many had spelling mistakes on (about 1 in 10). A lot also had American spellings for words. Examples include cheque becoming check (monetary terms), favourite becoming favorite the worst is colour becoming color.
2)    Now check the layout and fount. This is all very simple. There are tonnes of guidelines online. Times New Roman or Arial are both fine. I know you will be eager for your CV to stand out, but that should be in the content not the layout. Be consistent in your layout, if qualifications is in bold fount, then experience should be aswell.
3)    Two pages long.
4)    When you write about your previous jobs. Don’t just describe what you did. Describe how you used your transferable skills and what you learnt there. For instance if you worked as a waiter and kitchen porter don’t just say you washed dishes or answered the telephone. Explain how this improved your already high skills of organisation and coping under pressure.
5)    Be clear and concise, don’t waste words. No-one cares if you were ‘a good student’ they want to know what skills you will bring to the company. A lot of people say adjust your CV to the certain job you’re going for, but I don’t agree with this. That’s your covering letter. Your CV is a list of your accomplishments and achievements. If for example you’re going for a job at Tesco’s how will you mention Jack Cohan and Tesco’s values in your CV? Don’t be tempted, people will see through this and you will look desperate which is exactly what you don’t want.
6)    If your CV seems empty think deeply about your past, it’s amazing how many things you will have forgotten about. Remember that time you volunteered at the local sports centre. What did you do there that isn’t on your CV, maybe you handled petty cash, or maybe you controlled a large ground of noisy children with special needs. Try To balance out your CV, this will show you have a wide variety of skills.
7)    As much as your qualifications and previous job experience is vital, a lot of people will have similar grades and job experience to you. To set your self apart you must add to your volunteering and skills section. If you have been unemployed for a while consider volunteering or even better volunteer abroad and then learn a new language at the same time. Unlike mainland Europe a lot of English people cannot speak another language so this would really set you apart. This method is basically trying to think what your competitors don’t have and trying to get it yourself to make you more employable. Learning a new language is quite a big commitment, it may be something smaller like getting a driving licence.
8)    If you hand in your CV as a paper copy, remember to print it out on good quality paper and staple it together.
9)    Don’t lie. Sure you may get an interview or even the job, but 1) you may look a fool further down the line if you can’t do something you claim 2) You may well end up a considerable success in life, but how will you feel if looking back you know you had cheated to get to that position?

I hope this will help anyone who is in the process of writing or updating their CV. Comments welcome.

Created 07/31/2013 at 01:32 PM by Purdeyent in Careers advice

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