If you are looking for a job, then it is very important that you understand how to offer yourself in the best way to an employer.
This is done by writing a ‘CV’ (curriculum vitae – Latin for ‘life story’), called in some countries a ‘resume’.
Different countries may have different requirements and styles for CV resumes. So you must follow the correct practice for your culture and country. However, we will try to give you important principles and advice.
Employers do not want to see CVs which are all written in exactly the same way. Therefore, do not just copy standard CV samples! Your CV should be your own, personal, and a little bit different.
A CV should be constructed on a word-processor (or at least typed), well laid out and printed on a good quality printer. Do use bold and/or underline print for headings. Do not use lots of different font types and sizes. You are not designing a magazine cover
- Do use plenty of white space, and a good border round the page.
- Do use the spell-check on your computer! (Or check that the spelling is correct in some way).
- Consider using ‘bullets’ to start sub-sections or lists.
As you are using a computer or word-processor, you can easily ‘customise’ your CV if necessary, and change the layout and the way you write your CV for different employers.
Picture yourself to be a busy manager in the employer’s office. He (or she) may have to read through 100 CVs in half an hour, and will have two piles – ‘possibles’ and ‘waste-bin’.
So yours must be easy to read, short and attractive.
|There are two communication principles to remember:*’Keep it simple,.
*’If they didn’t hear it, you didn’t say it’.
So, when you have written a first attempt at your CV, get someone else to look at it, and tell you how to make it better.
Ask your friends, your tutors or teachers, your career office, family friends in business. What you have written may seem simple and obvious to you, but not to an employer! Go through it again and again with a red pen, making it shorter, more readable, more understandable!
WHAT TO INCLUDE
Name, home address, college address, phone number, email address.
Give places of education where you have studied – most recent education first. Include subject options taken in each year of your course. Include any special project, thesis, or dissertation work.
Pre-college courses (high school, etc.) should then be included, including grades. Subjects taken and passed just before college will be of most interest. Earlier courses, taken at say age 15-16, may not need much detail.
List your most recent experience first. Give the name of your employer, job title, and very important, what you actually did and achieved in that job. Part-time work should be included.
They will be particularly interested in activities where you have leadership or responsibility, or which involve you in relating to others in a team. A one-person interest, such as stamp-collecting, may be of less interest to them, unless it connects with the work you wish to do. Give only enough detail to explain. (If you were captain of a sports team, they do not want to know the exact date you started, how many games you played, and how many wins you had! They will ask at the interview, if they are interested.) If you have published any articles, jointly or by yourself, give details.
If you have been involved in any type of volunteer work, do give details.
Ability in other languages, computing experience, or possession of a driving licence should be included.
Usually give two names – one from your place of study, and one from any work situation you have had. Or if this does not apply, then an older family friend who has known you for some time. Make sure that referees are willing to give you a reference. Give their day and evening phone numbers if possible.
Maybe all you need to say will fit onto one sheet of A4. But do not crowd it – you will probably need two sheets. Do not normally go longer than this. Put page numbers at the bottom of the pages – a little detail that may impress.
There are two main styles of CV, with variations within them.
Information is included under general headings – education, work experience, etc., with the most recent events first.
2) Skills based
You think through the necessary skills needed for the job you are applying for. Then you list all your personal details under these skill headings. This is called ‘targeting your CV’, and is becoming more common, at least in UK.
But it is harder to do. So take advice on whether it is OK in your country and culture, and how to do it best.
It can be good to start with a Personal Profile/Objective statement. This is a two or three sentence overview of your skills, qualities, hopes, and plans. It should encourage the employer to read the rest.
You may vary the style according to the type of job, and what is accepted in your country and culture. So a big company would normally expect a formal CV on white paper. But, just perhaps, a CV applying for a television production job, or graphic designer, could be less formal – coloured paper, unusual design, etc!
Consider using a two column table to list your educational qualifications and courses taken.
Here is an anonymous sample CV which to GUIDE you in creating your own CV or resume. Good luck!!