Creating a well-crafted professional CV is like drawing up a map of your achievements and experiences; it serves as a compass for potential employers to understand who you are and why you should be considered for the position. Crafting an ideal CV takes dedication and attention to detail, from understanding what sections should be included, to highlighting relevant experiences and discoveries from one’s background. In this blog post, we will explore how to tailor the experience of creating CVs and cover letters, including how to include keywords, highlight achievements, and make the process of creating them easier.
To make a curriculum vitae, there are certain elements that employers expect to see. While each position may differ slightly depending on the requirements set forth by the employer, there are some standard sections that should definitely be included.
Contact Information: This section should include your full name, email address and phone number. You may also include your physical address if it’s applicable to the job.
Summary Statement: This section is an overview of who you are and what you bring to the table as an employee. Include any key accomplishments or successes related to the role.
Work Experience: Employers want to know what sort of work experience you have. In this section, list out any paid or unpaid positions – paid internships or apprenticeships included – within the last five years. Provide detailed descriptions of your duties with each role such as who you reported to, how many people you supervised etc. Begin each description with an action verb (i.e., “managed team of 10”) while emphasizing key accomplishments.
Education/Certifications: This section is fairly straightforward – list out any post-secondary degrees or certifications related to the role you’re applying for along with the institution where you obtained them and date of completion.
Skills/Qualifications: Here is where job applicants can showcase their strengths and abilities relevant to the role they’re applying for. List proficiency areas such as coding languages spoken languages etc. Be sure to emphasize any awards or certifications pertinent to your qualifications.
Awards, Publications, or Other Achievements: If applicable, list out awards won at school or in competitions, publications such as articles or blog posts written on a particular subject etc. Employers like seeing examples of noteworthy accomplishments related to a specific area so don’t hesitate to showcase them here.
Using keywords related to the position being applied for is one way of getting one’s name noticed by recruiters and employers. Here are some tips on how to do this effectively:
- Research job description: Scour through the job description carefully before submitting your application; this helps you pick up on keywords that are relevant to your experience and qualifications.
- Incorporate keywords into sections: Once you’ve identified which words will be helpful in giving recruiters a clear picture of who you are and what you bring to the table as an employee, insert these words into your CV in sections such as a summary statement, work experience, and skills & qualifications.
- Use industry-specific terminologies: Make sure to use terms that are specific to the industry you’re applying for when listing out areas of expertise. This helps recruiters know that you have a clear understanding of the field.
- Avoid over-use of keyword: The importance of keywords should never be underestimated. However, it’s important to not use too many particular keywords as this could make your CV seem spammy.
In order to ensure that employers take notice of your CV, it’s important to showcase accomplishments in a way that stands out. Here are some tips on how to do this effectively:
- Quantifiable results: When listing out responsibilities or duties from previous roles, include any quantifiable results whenever possible (i.e., “increased sales by 25%” rather than “responsible for sales growth”). This gives employers a better idea of how successful you were at each position.
- Focus on relevant achievements:Highlight any awards or recognition received from employers or professional organizations; mention publications if they relate directly to the role; provide customer feedback/testimonials if applicable; list volunteer activities demonstrating leadership qualities; describe projects completed with positive outcomes; and reference online portfolios or other relevant work samples.
Having a customized CV and cover letter can help applicants stand out from the competition. Here are some tips on how to tailor this experience effectively:
- Tailor the CV: Rather than submitting the same one-size-fits-all CV every time, customize it for each job that you apply for. Make sure the language is appropriate for the role and emphasize skills, experience, or achievements that are most pertinent to the job ad.
- Include relevant examples: When crafting your summary statement or work experience section, provide concrete examples of how your qualifications match what employers are looking for. This entices recruiters’ attention.
- Proofread carefully: It’s important to make sure that all information provided is accurate and up-to-date before submitting your application. Be sure to go through it multiple times and make sure there aren’t any typos, factual inaccuracies, etc.
- Personalize cover letter greeting: When writing a cover letter, personalize the greeting with the contact person’s name (if known). Show genuine enthusiasm about working with them then briefly explain why you’re interested in this specific role with their company and what makes you a great fit– furthering your chance of getting an interview invitation.