Summer jobs have never been harder to find, which is why having a successful CV is an important way of standing out.
It is the first step in gaining employment as well as the first impression an employer will get of your character, so it is definitely worth spending some time on.
Whether this is your first application, or you are looking to land a new job, these tips will help you create a winning CV!
Start strong with a template
If this is your first ever CV, staring at a blank document can be intimidating but do not stress! Thankfully, there are loads of templates online that will help you create a professional CV. Canva have lots of great CV templates that are free and aren’t log your standard, boring CV. It’s easy to make Canva CVs look like you put a lot of effort in, which can really impress potential employers and make you stand out in a sea of CVs.
Feel free to play around with the formatting but if it is your first CV, my best advice would be to keep it simple and stick to the original as much as possible. Make sure that your name, address and contact details are clearly marked at the top of your CV before you get to work on adding any additional details. Now, that you have the basic layout down you can start to focus on the specifics.
Keep it concise
Employers must delve through plenty of CV’s in order to shortlist the best candidates. They will not appreciate your multiple page CV taking up their precious time, so while it is important to stand out, make sure it is for a favourable reason.
A maximum of two pages is the typical recommendation for a CV length and given the limited experience your first few CV’s are likely to display, a single page application may help you to reduce unnecessary waffle. Focus on the most valuable information and highlight what is relevant and up to date.
Always tell the truth
Lying gets you nowhere… except stuck into very awkward positions you will struggle to escape!
Tempting though it might be to embellish your CV in the hopes of landing the job, it is better to stick to the truth. This is not just because you might get caught out but because you are almost guaranteed to regret it. You may get the job that matches your embellished skillset and miss out on the opportunity that suits your qualifications and will offer you the best chances for potential growth.
Do not overlook appearance
When you go for a job interview it is important to dress professionally. It is just as essential that your CV looks the part and the easiest way to manage this is to format it neatly. Stick to a font size between 10 and 12 depending on the style. Times New Roman is a popular font style, but Georgia or Calibri are good alternatives if you find the formatting fits better.
The most important thing is to maintain the same font throughout the CV. Starting with Comic Sans (a catastrophe CV font all by itself!) and then moving on to Arial before finishing off with Cambria will leave your CV looking messy and unprofessional.
A consistent and neatly organised CV could make all the difference.
Tailor your CV to the job
Once you have created a generic CV, save it, and make amended copies for each separate application. Tailoring your CV to the job description and the company will help you to stand out as a great potential fit for the vacancy.
One of the best ways to do this is to do your research. Most companies have websites that offer additional details or a company ethos. If you notice the same words such as “loyalty” or “creativity” cropping up repeatedly, echo these valued characteristics in your personality traits – but again stick to the truth!
Update your CV regularly
Now that you have your basic CV ready to go it is important to keep a copy of it saved on file and available to be regularly updated to reflect your qualifications. As your credentials develop ensure that your CV reveals the most accurate and current information about you to any prospective employer to provide yourself with the best chance.
Good luck with the job search!