Create the perfect CV

How many of you have a CV that you regularly update? When was the last time you thought about what would go into your CV?

I’ve recently had to think about my own CV. It’s not something I’ve considered for over 16 years – I’ve been with the same company for that long.

But the time had arrived for me to consider other options and explore new career paths. It was then that I realised that I didn’t have a CV that was up to date. Suddenly it dawned on me just how important it is to have one and to constantly update it.

A CV is one of the most important items you should have on hand when you are looking for a job. It is the first point of contact you have with a possible employer and through it that possible employer can easily identify if you are the right fit for a job.

Hence it’s imperative that your CV is well written, well-presented and easy to read.

Here are a few tips for creating the perfect CV:

It is important to make a great impression when looking for a job, even before you speak to your potential new employer.

Your CV is the first point of contact you will have with your potential employer, so it’s imperative to make it stand out and makes it to the top of the pile.

  • Perfect presentation

Your CV should be relevant, well-written, grammatically correct, free of typos, clear and concise, and generally looking good with consistent formatting.

Without this attention to detail, you risk having your CV placed at the bottom of the large pile companies are likely to receive. Or worse, it could be thrown in the bin.

  • Boost your skills set

No matter how great your CV looks, it’s always good to add new skills that are relevant to the position you are applying for.

As I looked through my desk drawer I came across certificates for courses and workshops I had attended over the years. These were all relevant and my CV from over 16 years ago didn’t have a mention of them!

  • Make it short and sweet

When companies post an ad for a job, they receive hundreds of CVs. But they’ll only read the ones they like the look of. If yours is six pages long, and full of irrelevant information, it could get tossed aside. Don’t make employers work to find the information they need to know about you. Rather, tailor your CV with information that is relevant to the job you are applying for.

  • A good cover letter

This is key to gaining the attention of employers. This is where you can truly shine. Let them know a bit about you and why you are perfect for the position.

But also be sure to show you know who they are and what they are about. They’ll appreciate that you’ve done your research.

I’ve found that LinkedIn helps you create a really good and concise CV that can be saved online and shared online. It also allows you to edit and update it as often as you may need.

Another good option is the digital training portal, Educate24. Once you register online you can create a SmartCV that you can also update regularly. And any courses you take through Educate24 will be automatically added to your SmartCV.

If you’re still aren’t sure that your CV isn’t perfect, you can get an assessment done and it’s free of charge. All you have to do is mail your CV to  with your first name in the subject line.

Someone will look at your CV and offer up guidelines on possible improvements.

Putting together my CV was not such a daunting task when I followed these simple tips and used the online versions at my disposal.

Now, it’s just a matter of getting out there and applying.

 

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Meneesha

Online and books editor by day, mum even while I sleep, individual all the time. I live in the beautiful city of Durban – the unpolished gem in South Africa. If I didn’t have a family, I’d be that crazy cat lady your mum probably warned you not to feed! Blogging is where I share, vent, rant, laugh and generally be myself. Join the ride!

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