Could your CV be improved?
A simple Google search will pull up over 50 million hits about writing your CV, including several professional services that will do that for you. There are tips about layout, format, style and another dozen other aspects for you to consider. Yet, there’s no cookie-cutter profile that is right for all.
CVs come in all sizes – we’ve seen 20+ page books with a table of content and index, to the more simple 1 pager. For creative types, we’ve seen CVs embedded into portfolios and links to online content. Some applications don’t even have a CV, but just a link to their page. So, which is right? By doing one and not the other, are you missing something?
The simple answer is to know your audience – who is going to read my CV? The harder answer is actually finding out who that person is or what system / process is in play!
That’s where we come in – recruitment companies worth their salt should be able to explain to you what your CV should hold. They can’t necessarily write your CV, but they should be able to give you some good pointers as to what you should be including (or not including!). At ECM Selection, we pride ourselves on the information we have gleaned over the years working with our clients and it is our intention to pass this relevant information to our candidates. We have a track record of getting interviews and offers for our candidates, and whilst the onus is on you to perform at the interview, we take out some of the mystery by helping you prepare. The first step is the CV – a good CV gets you that interview usually! We’ll talk to you about yourself and through your projects – what you may think isn’t that great maybe the differentiator of getting an interview or not. Different clients want different things from candidates – some want technical skills, others are looking for character and pro-activeness.
So, where to start? Send us your CV at firstname.lastname@example.org (we guarantee that your details will not be shared with any company without your prior permission) with the label #CV_ECM_KT and include everything you think is relevant. Don’t worry if you think it’s too long, we’re looking for something that’s going to excite our clients. If you have more than one version of your CV, send them both.
Things to pay attention to:
- Academic achievement – if it is good, tell us!
- Transferable technical skills – software, engineering, electronics, physics, biochemistry, etc…
- Technical projects – provide context to your technical skills (a list of skills doesn’t mean that much to us)
- Hobby projects – got a github account? design your own electronics? build your own tools? Let us know!
- What we’re less interested in reading in a CV is “good communications skills” or “project / time management” if they are not demonstrated within a commercial environment. Similarly, publication lists where you’re not the main author or conferences you’ve attended (unless you’re a speaker) are also not that interesting.
- Awards achieved during your primary schooling or that 50m breast stroke certificate will also raise questions as to why they’re still on your CV.
- Hobbies that include “socialising” and “eating in restaurants” should also be avoided!