If you’re struggling to get a job interview it could be that your CV isn’t able to match up to the competition. Trying to figure out what may be going wrong is difficult, but not impossible.
To help you stand out and make a great first impression, here are 7 ways to create a CV that beats the competition:
1. Make it easy to navigate
A hiring manager will spend less than 30 seconds reading your CV, so you need to make it easy to navigate. Space out each section accordingly and use titles in bold and with a larger font. The employer should be able to find any section they want within a few seconds. Use a simple, ATS-friendly CV template such as that offered by The Career Journal.
2. Avoid embellishments
Employers are well aware that a CV has been written from a very biased perspective. Although you want to make a great impression you should avoid getting carried away and embellishing or even lying on your CV. Stick to the facts so you don’t get caught out in an interview.
3. Keep it relevant
Although not every aspect of your career history to date will be entirely relevant to a new employer, you can however still ensure your CV focuses upon what matters.
An employer wants to see what you have to offer them, and shouldn’t have to read between the lines. Tailor your CV to the role and make sure it’s relevant to the role, the company and the industry.
4. Check your personal details
Just the one mistake in your email address or telephone number could mean you never get contacted for an interview. If the hiring manager tries to contact numerous potential candidates on the same day and fails to get hold of you, they are probably not going to keep trying.
5. Do your research
If you want to truly impress the employer, you need to conduct lots of research into the company and even the role if possible. Read the company’s website and social media pages to get a better understanding of what makes them tick.
The more you know about the company the easier it will be to write a great CV. The hiring manager will easily spot your commercial awareness and attention to detail.
6. Show your performance
An employer is not just interested in what skills and qualifications you have, and are also keen to see how you’ve performed in the past. Provide examples of your previous performances and consider creating an ‘Achievements’ section.
Quantify your results with numbers and figures, graphs and charts, and anything else you can think of which will go one step further to demonstrating your consistent and high performance record.
7. Write a CV for the company – no one else matters
Finally, one of the best ways to create a CV that beats the competition is to tailor it exclusively to the company and the role. Taking great care to ensure you supply the right information is more important than simply listing all your achievements.
Cut out as much irrelevant information as possible and structure your entire CV around the company. Consider what’s important to the employer and what they would be looking for in a candidate. Give them everything they need and nothing they don’t.