Spelling Mistakes

Just had a CV in for review and it had the following as an opening Key Skill:

  • EXELENT COMUNICATION SKILLS 

Why didn’t they spot this!!

It’s simple. Firstly they haven’t properly read their own CV and secondly it’s in UPPER CASE. Why does this matter?
Because Word doesn’t look for spelling mistakes when words are in upper case and we’re all so reliant on spell checkers that we’ve become lazy with our spelling.
So, do not use UPPER CASE in your CV and make sure you get someone else to proof read what you’ve written – they’ll spot your mistakes!

Magazine Style CV

We’ve noticed a growing trend for CVs in what we refer to as a magazine format.

Basically the CV is written like a page from a magazine with small snippets of information dotted around the page with different fonts and different colour backgrounds – much like you might see in Hello! or OK! magazine.

These CVs look great but they are a major mistake.

Magazine pages are laid out that way for a very specific set of reasons. Their authors know that their readers are essentially scan reading articles whilst relaxing or killing time and are looking to be informed, entertained or even titillated by sometime random snippets of information.

The person reading a CV is in a completely different mind set.

They are focused on extracting key pieces of information that will tell them if the person they are reading about has the experience and/or qualifications to do the job vacancy that they are looking to fill. If you make that task hard for them – they’ll give up looking and move onto the next one! The information has to be where they are used to looking for it.

So, please, make it easy for the person reading your CV!

Templates

There are many CV templates and free examples available that look good, but you need a combination of both style and substance for a really professional Curriculum Vitae.

A template is good for getting the look and layout of a CV correct but that’s about as far as it goes.

An employer or recruiter needs to be able to quickly read a CV and ascertain if you’re worth interviewing. Whilst a template will help you along the road it doesn’t help with writing compelling content that really gets you onto the interview list.

If we write your new CV then you will have a document that really sells you and  gets you the interview.

Click on our free review to see what we mean – with no obligation. 

Be Positive!

Employers look for positive language in a CV.

Sounds obvious but the number of CVs we see that use weak language is incredible.

What do we mean by “Positive Language”?

Perhaps the most common example is when applicants say in their profile “I consider myself to be a hard working person” or “I can consider myself to be a reliable employee”.

This is weak language for a CV.

It’s much better to say “I am a hard working person” or “I am a reliable employee”.

It’s the same thing but so much stronger and positive in the way you portray yourself.

Age on a CV

You don’t need to put your age on a CV and recruiters and employers are not allowed to directly ask you how old you are.

It would be naive to think that your age doesn’t make a difference as many recruiters are under 30 and to them anyone over the age of 50 is not a good candidate.

But how do you avoid showing your age?

1. Don’t put your date of birth on.

Obvious but we still had to say it!

2. Only show the last 15-20 years of employment history on your CV.

You don’t have to show your entire life history in a CV and if the last 15-20 years doesn’t include any relevant experience then you probably shouldn’t be applying for the job in the first place!

3. If your email address was generated by your email provider it may well have your year of birth in it, e.g. davidsmith52@blahblah.com 

Get yourself a new email address specifically for job applications from Gmail or Yahoo.

4. Take out the years for your training and education.

Training is training, no matter when you did it and the same applies for education. There are exceptions to this but with many time related certifications the re-application process is pretty basic and employers won’t hesitate to get you through it if they think you’re the right person.

5. Take a careful look at your interests and hobbies…

If you put down that “spending time with my grand children” is an interest then you are giving away your age.

 

Follow these 5 steps and you’ll get past the age barrier and get the interview.