3 Updates You Must Make to Your CV Before Applying
We have all been there, left with mere hours until the deadline of a job vacancy you just found out about yesterday. Maybe you procrastinated too long like the overconfident hare from the Tortoise and the Hare, maybe you heard about it late.
Whatever the reason, it might be too late to do more than give your résumé a once over, however there are 3 updates (verified by human resources professionals) which you absolutely must do to give your application a better chance of being noticed. Or at the very least, you'll remove any major red flags which may reveal that you had to rush the application.
1. Check your grammar and spelling
It may sound pretty obvious, but when in a hurry it is surprisingly easy to miss a repeated "the the" or mixing up "there" and "their". You may be the most qualified in your field, but a small grammar mistake or two on your CV may be enough for the HR department at your dream company to disregard the rest of your application. Don't take that risk! Read it out loud, or if you can, have a friend skim through to see if it sounds right.
2. Keep it 2 or 3 pages long at the most
Yours isn't the only résumé landing at the recruiter's desk, and they never have the time, nor care (yet) to know about your hobbies - unless they are relevant to the job in some way. Leave any non-critical information out so that the important stuff doesn't get lost in the fluff. If you are worried that by cutting those extra 5 pages you'll lose the real story about why you should be hired, don't be.
Your CV's job is to give a good first impression which makes them want to know more. And part of a good first impression is showing that you respect the recruiters' time enough to get to the point quickly and concisely.
Tips for shortening your CV:
- Select only your career highlights
- Write in bullet points under headings instead of paragraphs
- Leave out primary school education and very early career experience (unless it's somehow relevant to the application). This is especially if you're in your mid- to experienced phase of your career.
- Avoid repetition (If you had similar duties in 2 jobs, rather mention it once in the first job and then highlight different duties which were unique to the second job, instead of writing it twice)
The only exception to the "3 page maximum" guideline is if the job application specifically indicates that it can be longer.
3. Make sure your contact information is accurate
When you dig out an old resume for a "spit shine", sometimes it may slip your mind that the number, physical address, or email is outdated. A quick check can save you from being in a situation where you've been shortlisted but you're unable to be contacted. Disastrous. Make sure to check for misspellings as well, since your document spellcheck often won't be able to pick up errors regarding personal details.
If all else fails, hire an editor to do all that for you, and more...
Sometimes you'd rather spend money than time. In that case, get a professional like myself to correct errors, sharpen the language, and consult with you to ensure that only the most relevant information is presented.
You can also request the extra service of having your CV redesigned in an eye-catching, modern style, which shows recruiters that you care about how you present yourself - even on paper. Of course the more time I have, the more I can include in the service, so the earlier the better.
I work 100% online, and serve clients from all over the world.
|Sample of my work upgrading a CV|