CV for the 21st century

Keep your CV short

Keeping your CV short is the important part of writing a CV, Recruiters and HR managers do not have the time to go through a 10 page CV.An ideal length of the CV should be minimum 2 pages and max being  3 pages.It has been statistically proven that it takes a recruiter 30 seconds to scan through your CV. So think to yourself, if you only have 30 seconds to present, what do you want to get across quickly?

Make your CV look good

Your CV should be well structured, professional and error-free.Going the extra mile to make your CV visually presentable is always good, however, if it is not up to scratch it just will not work.

Take into consideration that in certain industries – usually creative, visual or advertising – your CV will form part of a broader portfolio, so presenting it to the best of your creative abilities will show that you know what you are doing.Add a profile picture!recuiters and HR managers want to see who they are dealing with.

Don’t count on the recruiter to read your cover letter

Recruiters are in the business of comparing CVs with CVs. Although it’s a good idea to have a polite cover letter, keep the useful information – where you highlight relevant skills and experience – for the CV itself rather than expecting the recruiter to use two documents to get the full picture.

While many companies still request covering letters, work on the assumption that the letter may not get read due to the volumes that recruiters have to deal with.

Adapt your CV to the job you are applying for

Recruiters expect you to have done the work to tell them why you are the ideal candidate for the job on offer – not for just any job.

List only the experience you have for the job you are applying for.If you are a teacher, and applying for a teaching post, just state your teaching experience.There is no need to list down voluntary work or that time you worked at a restaurant.

Don’t overdo the biography section

In the past, people used to include everything from their age and health to their religion and marital status in the biography section of their CVs. Now, it’s advisable to include as little of this kind of information as possible, especially if it could be used for discriminatory purposes.Information such as your passport number on a CV is not needed, add your D.O.B, but the passport number will be handed in when needed to make the visa.

Repeat the job’s skills requirements in your CV

If you are applying online, your CV could be processed by a computer before any human lays eyes on it. For this reason, it’s a good idea to list the set of skills you have using the same wording as the job ad’s skills required because the computer will select your application based on how well you match the requirements.

This isn’t a bad approach even if you know that you are dealing with a human being because it will help them to see what a good match you are without having to dig for information.

Include a career summary 

Personal descriptions or self-praise must be avoided as they are outdated. like saying you’re motivated or a team player – are dead and gone.

Reverse chronology still stands

Always show your latest job FIRST. List your most recent experience first, rather than showing them your first job first. give a description of your duties at the jobs.Be specific and make sure you state the time frame of which you worked at the listed jobs.

Don’t go overboard with online CVs

While it’s great to have an online CV – especially if you work in an industry that’s technologically focused – you should still apply for jobs by attaching or uploading a document-based CV. Recruiters may have specific processes for reading through or filing CVs, and you don’t want to make them go to the extra effort of clicking on a link, and copying and pasting your information into a document format.

Clean up your social media profiles 

Although this isn’t strictly a point for your CV, chances are that anyone considering you for a job in this day and age will google your name, and check out any social media profiles you have. Beat them to it and make sure that there isn’t any questionable content out there to turn them right off you.Professionals these days should have a LinkedIn profile.

Understand your industry

While there are certain standards that every applicant should be aware of,  it’s important to know how the recruitment models in your specific industry work.Try to adjust your energies and efforts to what you think will yield the best results. If networking is the most common way of getting a job in your industry, don’t spend all your time on online applications. Act in the way that’s most likely to get results.