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Bag that job interview!
By Hayley from Jobulo
CV writing can be tough. Not only do you have to demonstrate your key skills and expertise, but you have to do it against some stiff competition! Most employers receive hundreds, sometimes thousands, of applications for every job role they advertise. Last year supermarket giant Tesco received 4,300 applications for 150 job openings they were advertising – that’s around 30 applications for every vacancy!
With so much competition on the job market, it’s now more important than ever to get the initial CV writing process perfect. So with this in mind, we wanted to look at 5 common CV mistakes and offer some tips on how you can avoid them and hopefully improve your chances of securing a job interview.
#1 Too Long
There’s no doubt about it – no matter how interesting your vast work experience may be, a CV can be too long. Employers allocate a short amount of time to look through CVs and create shortlists for job roles they are advertising, so if they are faced with a CV that is pages and pages long, then it’s unlikely they’ll want to read it. Employers need to get to the key information on a CV as quickly as possible. Find out ways to shorten your lengthy CV.
Tip: Remember – a CV is designed to entice an employer and to prompt them to want to find out more about your expertise. It’s not designed to tell them your entire career story, so keep it short and sweet – two pages or less if you can.
#2 Too Short
Although a CV can be too long, a CV that is too short can be equally damaging to your job interview prospects. If your CV doesn’t have much information or experience on it then how can an employer assess whether you have the credentials to succeed in the role?
Tip: When you are writing your CV ensure you include all of the key information and if you are struggling to fill out the work experience section why not consider volunteering? Voluntary roles are a great way to boost your CV content, gain experience and you can also meet valuable industry contacts.
#3 Spelling Mistakes
If there’s one CV mistake that irritates employers the most it’s this. Sending a CV out with spelling or grammatical errors indicates that you haven’t put much time and effort into your CV writing and you are not that interested in the job role.
Tip: Before you send your CV to an employer, print it out and proof read it several times to spot any mistakes and correct them before you send it off.
#4 Writing a Generic CV
As employers receive multiple applications for every job role they advertise, it’s crucial that you make yours stand out from the competition. If you write a generic CV that doesn’t relate to the employer and send it out to a handful of vacancies, then every recruiter that reads your CV will find it hard to visualise the impact you could have on their company.
Tip: When writing your CV always keep the job role and responsibilities in mind and relate these to your previous positions to demonstrate why you are the right person for the job.
#5 Poor Design
You might think that concentrating on the content of your CV is the only task when writing one, and although it’s certainly essential, you also need to consider the design. A scruffy or disorganised CV will send a recruiter running for the hills so ensure yours is laid out well and that it’s all in order.
Tip: Organise your CV. Include your most recent job role at the top of the work experience section, use sub-headings to organise each section and consider using a professional CV design to add extra visual-impact.
You may also want to check out how to create a Social CV.