Tips For Creating An Effective Curriculum Vitae

In many parts of the world a curriculum vitae, or CV, is replacing the old-guard resume. An effective curriculum vitae will be your personal sales pitch for a job, so you must prepare it in that light. Often, a well planned CV is your only means to getting an interview. Building your first CV can be a daunting task, so we put together a few tips that should help you get started.

Global CV Tips

There are a few global tips, or tips that you need to keep in mind throughout your CV. The first is to always be clear and concise. Hiring professionals have hundreds of CV to go through for each position, so they will dedicate no more than 30 seconds to a cursory glance of yours. All of the information contained in your CV must be up-to-date, i.e. employment, education, and employment related awards or publications. You can accomplish these goals by remembering:

  • The easiest way to draw an HR associate’s eye to key information and help them scan your CV more quickly and efficiently is to use bullet points throughout the document.
  • When you begin to build your CV, do not worry about length. Get everything down, then you can edit to a maximum of three pages.
  • Keep track of what you do day in and day out. This will help you describe your job experience.
  • Many people create a master document with all of their information, but adjust their CV content depending on the job to which they are applying.

Key Tips For An Effective Curriculum Vitae

  • Regularly update your CV: when you meet an important goal at work or are given a promotion with new responsibilities, add a line or two to your master CV.
  • Never have a time gap: gaps in employment will be questioned, so address them in your CV. No matter the reason, explain it in a few lines.
  • Use a common font and limit the effects: a complicated font is unprofessional and can make your CV hard to read. Bold and underlining may be great effects to draw attention to key accomplishments, but they lose their effectiveness if used too often.
  • Keep it on the level: if you get an interview, the interviewer is going to make you talk through your CV. If you have exaggerated at any point, you may trip over the details during the face-to-face.
  • Terminology used in your CV must be job appropriate and commonly used throughout the industry. To double check this, you should look at job descriptions that are similar to the position you are applying to.
  • Show all job progression: obviously, you will want to show every promotion. If you have not been promoted, but have taken on additional responsibilities as your skills progressed, that should be noted as well.
  • Outside eyes are key to a readable CV: show your CV to friends, family, or colleagues. Ask them how easy it is to read and quickly find key information.
  • Experienced workers should not be punished for an extensive work history. If your work history section tends to run long, you can summarize your experiences in the profile section, offering reviewers a short overview.
  • Space is at a premium, so limit the amount of words you use in the personal details section.