I have to be honest here, I hate writing CVs. I’m not sure anyone is particularly fond of them, and it has a lot to do with the pressure of making yourself stand out in the average six seconds that potential employers spend looking at your resume before deciding if they’ll read more or not.
But, mates, it’s a very necessary part of life and once you have the basic formula perfected you’re in a much easier place to tailor the next one. So how do you write a winner?
Reconsider Your Objective
You know that little summary/ objective paragraph you probably still have at the top of your resume? They’ve been modernised a little bit. The trend now seems to be two to three dot points that sum up who you are as a professional and what makes you different from the competition. Short, concise and clean.
Include With Your Recent Jobs
This may be obvious, but besides contact details and the objective, there’s really nothing more important on your resume than the experience you’ve already had.
Starting from most current, list the roles you’ve held that make you a strong candidate for this role. You are NOT required to list literally every single job you’ve ever held. That time you worked in a bakery in high school and that one job you left after a few weeks aren’t going to help you land many other jobs, so you can skip them.
If you’ve done relevant work experience that’s actually impressive, list it under its own ‘volunteer/ work experience’ section.
Add The Deets In Point Form
We’re not quite done with the jobs yet. It’s not enough to just list the jobs, you need to have concise bullet points under each one summarising what you achieved while you were working in it. Please note I said achievements, not duties.
Hiring managers probably have a pretty good idea of what the job entailed, but what makes you stand out from all the other candidates is what you were able to accomplish during your time performing those duties. You don’t want to wax lyrical here, but you do want hard details.
You Don’t Need Your Education
If you’re a very recent graduate, yeah sure you can still have a line or two talking about your studies on your resume. If you’ve been in the workforce for a while, however, potential employers are looking at your work experience over your grades. If you do include it, make sure it comes after your jobs, not before.
You Probs Don’t Need To List Skills
Besides I.T. or other highly technical fields, your skills are probably going to be pretty obvious so you don’t need to list them. If you feel you still want one, make sure it’s hard skills like second languages and software programs. None of that ‘strong written communication skills’ stuff.