How To Build An Awesome CV

Looking for a new job is a thrilling proposition for anyone. When you’re searching, it can feel like there are so many exciting opportunities to grasp. However, to take advantage of these opportunities, you need to have a high-class CV. If your CV doesn’t stand out, it’ll be challenging for you to land the position.

Studies have shown that on average recruiters spend just seven seconds looking at a CV before deciding whether a candidate is suitable for the role. So, it goes without saying that first impressions are critical to success. Here are a few simple, but effective tips to make sure your CV stands out.

Organisation

It’s a myth that a great CV needs to have everything but the kitchen sink included in it. Familiar with the KISS theory? No? Well, essentially the PG acronym stands for ‘’Keep it super simple. What was once used as a US Navy term, can be applied here as well. A great CV only needs to provide the relevant details so nail the basics and leave the ‘’fluff’’ out.

Here’s the basic CV format that all resumes should incorporate:

  • Personal/contact information
  • Education and qualifications
  • Works history and/or experience
  • Relevant skills to the job in question
  • Personal interests
  • Achievements or hobbies
  • References

By following this order, you can ensure that no matter where you apply, the CV is in proper format and won’t be discarded immediately.

Fonts Matter

It’s okay to want to add a bit of a personal touch to your CV and switch up the font, but job seekers often make the mistake of picking one that doesn’t look professional. Not only does your font need to look professional, but it needs to be a font that’s easy to read as well.

No matter how good your CV, if reading it annoys the recruiters, then your application will not stand much of a chance.

Here are a few fonts that will never go wrong;

  • Arial
  • Tahoma
  • Helvetica
  • Sans-Serif
  • Times New Roman
  • Bookman Old Style

When it comes to font size, the golden rule is to go with either 11 pt or 12 pt font size. Make sure you also remember to go with single spacing. For all headings, anywhere between 14 to 16 pt font size will work.

Presentation

Your CV’s layout should be simple, well-structured, and take into account the CV “hotspot” which is the upper middle section of the first page. Studies show that this is where the recruiter’s eye will naturally fall at first glance so make sure the most important information is placed here. 

To ensure that your CV looks as neat as possible in its final print, maintaining consistency across the document is vital. That means ensuring that the margins of the page are equal on all four sides.

Ensuring uniformity is critical towards making the CV as neat as possible. With your headings, pick one particular font size and decide between making the text bold or not. It’s important that your headings are distinguishable from the rest of the CV content.  

Make Everything Brief and Relevant

Fluff is one of the worst things you can include on a CV. You might be endorsing yourself, but to the employers, it’s just needless information. The information that you include in the CV must be brief and relevant. There’s no need to mention every single detail about your life in the CV, however, a little bit about your activities outside of work will show your personality.

Don’t Include Any Photos

If the job posting doesn’t ask for it, then there’s no reason to attach a photo with your CV. Even when the job posting asks for it, be careful when selecting what picture you’re going to use. Pick a picture that ensures that you look professional and doesn’t feature any other objects in the background.

By following these golden rules, everyone can ensure that they build the most professional-looking CV possible!

Author: Danny Main is a co-owner & Director at Responsum Global. He has over 15 years’ experience matching the top building services engineering talent with the best employers. He has over 100 written success stories. He’s active on LinkedIn, is a host on The Building Services Podcast, and a regular writer on The Building Services Blog. He loves football, talking properties and owns a cat that is bigger than his dog.

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