Posted on 7th November 2016 by Jon Terry

It's your CV. Not a patchwork quilt!

It's your CV. Not a patchwork quilt!

When looking for a new path on your career journey, it may be tempting to pick up your old CV, add your latest role and send it off to multiple vacancies... don’t. This is not going to be effective as your old CV is most likely outdated, lacks consistency and may not be formatted correctly, whilst also including paragraphs of old, irrelevant, unnecessary information. We recommend, therefore, that you don’t just add to your old CV, you rewrite it instead.

Keep it concise

Most employers and recruiters get sent hundreds of CVs each week and, therefore, don’t have time to read through endless pages. It is important that you keep your CV informative, yet minimal - two pages is the general rule but with so many people reading CVs on computer screens and tablets these days don't worry too much if it is 2 1/2 pages. Within those two pages ensure you state your key roles, milestones and main steps in your career - bullet points will be easier for the employer to identify as opposed to reading prose heavy paragraphs.

Adding to your CVWhen formatting your CV you must make sure it is relevant. Stating a part time job you had ten years ago in a completely different sector may allow you to identify skills developed, but are they relevant to the role you are applying for? Will they make you stand out? If the answer is no then don’t include them, you are wasting precious space and time.

Remove any jargon, it’s very common to be tempted to write elaborately, but a CV should be concise, simple and to the point.

Keeping your CV concise will also mean that you’ll be able to expand on your points during the interview and could provide a great starting point for questions. Leave the recruiter wanting to know more about you in your CV, make them want to offer you an interview.

Alter your CV to match the new job role

Writing paragraphs about your career plans and long term ambitions aren’t necessary, as your previous experience and cover letter should have already explained this. Instead, what you should do is highlight particular achievements and relevant jobs, state attributes which would make you a better employee than others.

Put the skills most relevant to the role near the top, and don’t be afraid to swap this around for different roles you are applying for.

Remove references

Alter your CVAt the early stages of the recruitment process references aren’t needed and including their details within your CV will take up a lot of space. If the employer needs to converse with one of your references, they’ll ask. Writing a sentence such as ‘references are available upon request’ will do the trick as it is showing the employer that you’ll be able to provide the relevant information when necessary. And if you are really short of space even that sentence can be jettisoned.

Transform your social image into a brand

As well as a CV being a crucial element to the recruitment process, in some cases so are your social media accounts. Most employers will try searching for you through a variety of social platforms to see what they can find, giving you the perfect opportunity to create a brand for yourself. Ensure your social profiles are consistent, give them all the same name and bio. From this, employers will be able to see your hobbies and interests and make a judgement as to whether they see you as fit for the role.

Wright Solutions offer executive recruitment services and have a team of expert executive recruiters that specialise in placing candidates for executive roles within Human Resources (HR) and Learning and Development. For more information or to discuss our services please feel free to get in touch either by telephone on 0121 222 5599 or by email to Don’t forget you can follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn or sign up to our newsletter for regular updates.

Jon Terry

By Jon Terry

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