Common CV mistakes

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Creating a CV is central in the search for a job but is something most of us hate doing.  Unfortunately, very few people are adept at presenting themselves in the best possible light and this can mean their application is rejected at the first hurdle.

One of the biggest mistakes most people make is sending out the same CV for every application. Each CV needs to be tailored to the job in question, and it’s vital that you do this if you want to stand out from the crowd.

What does it mean to tailor a CV? It simply means writing it specifically for the Job you are applying for. To do this you must recognise the keywords the employer will be looking for and relate them to your own experience. Keywords will be found in the job description They describe the skills, qualifications and experience needed for the job.

Another common mistake is including their entire work and educational history. It’s usual for CVs to go back only 10 years in terms of work and if you have a degree, school qualifications can be omitted, unless specifically requested or relevant. Employers occasionally ask for a full CV, in which case you do have to include everything.

Choosing the wrong format can also condemn your CV to the bin. Many people stick to the chronological CV  but this is not always the most appropriate. It works well if you have been steadily progressing up the ladder in a particular career, or if your most recent jobs are likely to impress the company you hope to work for.

A skills-based or functional CV is great if you have gaps in your work history, as you can use it to highlight the fact that you have exactly the skills the employer is looking for. It’s also useful if you are moving to a new career or area of work and your work experience isn’t completely relevant.