Top tips for a stand-out CV!
5 years ago
Our feet are firmly back on solid ground this week after our Information Days in Dublin and Cork. Both days were a resounding success and we were delighted with the turn-out. We hope you all got the information you were looking for and that you enjoyed our workshops.
One of our workshops on career development, given by our own career guidance counsellors and entitled ‘Career Planning’, gave some great tips on how to write a compelling CV and stand out from the crowd. In case you missed it or you want to refresh your memory, we’ve outlined some of their advice below.
The first step, as advised by our professionals, to those looking for a new job or a change in direction was to look in and then look out!
- Look at yourself; your values, interests personality and skills
- Look out! What are the opportunities out there in the workplace, job placement opportunities/internships
- Choose: There isn’t one path, there are many; employment, education, entrepreneurship
- Get there: Job hunting, internships and starting a business
- Reflect on your career to date
Our career counsellors revealed some of the top simple mistakes made when writing CVs:
- One in three CVs were considered poor with bad spelling and missing information
- 25% of CVs were too long – over three pages!
- Almost one quarter were incorrectly prioritised
Our counsellors CV Rules:
- Use a clear font (Arial, Calibri or Helvetica)
- Put your name across the top and in the footnote
- It should be in reverse chronological order
- It needs to be punchy, snappy and accurate
- Brevity counts! 1-2 A4 pages is plenty!
- Use action verbs
- Highlight your competencies
- Proof read it again
- When you’re done proof-reading it, proof read it again
- And again!
- Use spell check - but spell-check the spell-check!
Using references effectively
- Tell your referee that you are using them for references
- Let them know about the role you are going for, what evidence they can provide to match the position you are applying for
- Make it easy – provide them with the information that you have provided to the company
- Follow up –update & thank them
Writing effective cover letters
Keep the cover letter on-point!
- Why you are writing it? Convey that you want to work for them not just any company in the industry
- Why you? Explicitly refer to your skills and competencies but be careful not to replicate what is in your CV
- Why this role? Why do you want this particular job? What can you do to enhance the company?
- Get someone to proof read it
- Keep a copy for yourself
- Print it on good quality paper, ensuring that it will photocopy easily
- Try to find out who you’re writing to – show that you’ve gone the extra mile!
And when you get called for that interview, check back in with us, we’ll be posting our interview advice next week. Watch this space & best of luck!
Questions about Springboard+ or your eligibility? Don’t hesitate to give us a call on freephone 1800 303 523.