Top 7 Mistakes That Make Your CV Look Unprofessional


By Kibet Tobias

So many people write to me to share their frustrations about their unfruitful job search and they all ask me this question, “Why don’t I get jobs that I apply for, even when I am qualified?” Have you ever asked yourself this question? Why you are not getting any job you apply for? And even when you see a job you know you stand a chance of getting, you fail to apply because no one will call you anyway?

I understand your concern and I will lay everything on the table today.

The bitter truth is that 99% of the problem is caused by your CV. Yes, that CV you send to employers very hurriedly is what is costing you all the frustration and depression.

Let’s find out why.

Mistakes that make your CV look unprofessional

1. Providing very little information about your work experience

In simple terms, it’s what I like to call a THIN CV. You see, the only point of contact between you and the employer is your CV. For example, the HR Manager at Safaricom might not know you personally, but by looking at your CV they will be able to gather some information about you.

Therefore, you cannot expect the HR Manager at Safaricom to have confidence in your abilities if the details about your work experience are summarized in one sentence.

Most people write this:  “Worked as an HR Assistant in Company XYZ,” and they end there.

The employers want to know more about how a day was like in your role. Did you interview clients? Did you attend client meetings? Did you shortlist candidates? What unique tasks were you assigned?

Write everything that you deem to be important down. Everything. The employer wants to know.

2. Providing funny Email Addresses

I’m referring to the annhottie@gmail.com and sexymato567@gmail.com email addresses you have been using since you were in high school. Nothing screams unprofessional like such emails.

It doesn’t take longer than 10 minutes to create a new Gmail account. Create one that is professional, that is a combination of your official names, and not more than 2 numbers.

3. Failing to provide your Email Address

How will employers contact you? Always ensure that you provide your professional email address and a phone number that works and is active.

4. Making Assumptions

Our team of CV writing professionals all points out this one common mistake among many job seekers, which is making assumptions.

You find that someone has not indicated their job title on their CV, or they have not provided their previous company name.

Another area one of the CV writing experts here notes, is how people write the duration they have been working.

She says that most people write something like this: “Worked at Deloitte Company (6 months). The ‘6 months’ section is the problem.

You must indicate the duration in terms of years or months for example: “Worked at Deloitte Company (May 2016- January 2017)”

When you just write (6 months), the employer cannot quite tell when you were working and when you stopped. It almost appears like you are hiding something (like being fired or quitting).

Be bold when writing your CV, and provide the correct durations.

5. Using clichés

You know the “I’m a dedicated team player” phrases? Those are cliché. They have been overused in the CV writing world, that they have lost meaning.

Write a unique CV. This is why it’s so important to consult a professional to help you come up with unique CV with a personal touch.

6. Using the “I was a prefect in Primary School” kind of phrases

Let me surprise you. Most employers do not pay attention to such roles you had in 1998 and 2002, which you have indicated on your CV.

Recruiters insist that your most important asset on your CV is your MOST RECENT work EXPERIENCE. This is where they draw most of their attention.

What happened in the past remains in the past, and is no longer relevant. Talk about your last job. Spend most of your time detailing your experience in the last one year, and summarize your past qualifications.

7. Writing Using Inconsistent Fonts

In the world of CV’s, writing with inconsistent fonts makes your CV appear dirty, unpresentable and distracting to the eye.

If your preferred font style is Times New Romans, use it untill the end. Make your CV very clean and presentable, because you want to make a good first impression when the employer looks at your CV.

Most importantly, your CV is a representation of who you are.  Let it represent you in the best way.

I am surrounded by a team of CV writing experts who have put smiles on people’s faces, by designing such beautiful and professional CV’s, that the employer cannot afford to ignore.

How does your CV look? Are you confident that you have everything in order? Let’s review it for you and work with you to create a great CV.

Your dream job depends on it.  Learn more about our CV Writing Services. 

Tobias is a Communications Officer at Jobs Kenya Network. For questions or comments, Contact: 0729735467

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