Are you looking for a job?
Do you think you have all the qualifications but can’t seem to find a job? Your CV could be letting you down.
A CV is the first content you have with a potential employer and so you need to ensure that you tailor yours to fit the job description and the company you are applying to.
In this article, I will discuss some of the dos and don’ts when writing a CV that stands out.
The Do’s of writing a CV
1. Include Your Personal Statement
By reading the personal statement, a recruiting manager is able to identify your strengths and can tell that you have the right qualifications for the job.
One of the mistakes that most job seekers make is fail to include a personal statement.
2. Keep it short
There is no evidence that shows that a longer CV gets the most interviews.
The length of a CV is dependent on your years of experience. However, in as much as you may have over ten years of experience, having worked for several companies, include only those jobs that are related to the one you are applying for.
Fresh graduates who do not have a lot of experience, you don’t have to include irrelevant information to make your CV longer
3. Use Key Words
When showcasing your qualifications, ensure that you include the keyword that are in the job description as well as those related to the industry.
Employers shortlist candidates based on these keywords.
4. Use the Right Font
The most commonly used and recommended font is Times New Roman. But you may also use Cambria or Calibri for online job applications.
On the other hand, the ideal font size is 11. So make your CV nice and easy to read to help the recruiting manager scan it easily.
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5. Add Professional Qualifications
This section should include relevant qualifications in chronological order starting with the most recent.
It is good to note that KCPE qualifications do not matter. Just include a degree and KCSE. You may also include other certification courses like CPA or foreign language.
6. Proofread Your CV
Nothing is a turn off than a CV full of typos and grammatical errors. Once you finish writing your CV, always proofread it.
Have a trusted friend to proofread your CV before you submit it.
Typos and spelling errors can quickly undermine your chances of getting the job.
The Don’ts of writing a CV
1. Don’t include irrelevant personal information
Most people include their age, marital status, nationality among other things on their CV. This information is not necessary unless the employer has asked you to state things like nationality and gender. Actually, no employer wants to know your sexuality, ethnicity and marital status.
And on that note, a photo is not necessary unless asked to.
2. Don’t lie
When writing a CV, most of the people are tempted to lie to fit the qualifications of the position. . Employers perform background checks and the truth will always come out.
3. Do not mention salary
Anything to do with money and other benefits can wait until the interview stage. Unless the job description required you to indicate your expected salary, do not include it.
Anything to do with money can be discussed once you passed the interview and the job offer has been given.
4. Do not include unnecessary references
You only have a limited amount of space on your CV. So don’t waste time and space on things you don’t need.
It is recommended that you include at least three referees and these should be people you have worked under at some point who can easily be reached if there is a need for a background check.
With all these said and done, make it your habit to create a well written and perfect professional CV that will portray you in the best light.
The writer is a Communication Officer & Professional CV Writer at Jobs Kenya Network.