Never underestimate the importance of a good CV or Résumé layout. There are thousands of people going for the same jobs and your CV or Résumé is your foot in the door. You need to stand out from the other applicants – but stand out in a GOOD way. Here are some tips to help you:
- The summary at the top of your CV or Résumé is your opportunity to catch your employer’s attention and interest, so use it to pack some punch. Keep it extremely factual and drop in any key achievements that you think would be of interest to prospective employers.
- AVOID FLUFFY WORDS IN THE SUMMARY – we cannot emphasise this enough, but so many candidates just don’t listen. While it may be true that you work well as part of a team, a prospective employer is not going to believe you based on what you’ve written. If you want to prove a particular soft skill, offer specific examples later in the CV or Résumé of how you have demonstrated that skill in a working environment. For example, if you are good at handling difficult customers, you could write “I worked in the complaints department of XYZ Holdings for 2 years. During that time I successfully resolved typically 100 – 200 complaints every week. Customer satisfaction scores in relation to the handling of my complaints were 97% positive.” As you can see, this is extremely specific – but it is an ideal example to show your prospective employer that genuinely, you are very good at dealing with difficult customers.
- You don’t need to include too much personal information on your CV or Résumé template – it’s irrelevant and it gives the employer an opportunity to discriminate against you before they have even met you. For example, it’s best not to mention that you’re married, have children, or what your age is.
- Similarly during a job interview (under UK law) your employer should not ask about:
- Your age – unless it is relevant to the job, e.g. you will be selling alcohol
- Spent criminal convictions – they can ask but you don’t have to tell them, with some exceptions (e.g. a school)
- Trade union membership – they cannot refuse to hire you based on membership (or insist you joint a union) so they shouldn’t ask you about this
- Whether you are married or in a civil partnership
- Whether you have children or plan to have children
- Whether you are or are becoming a transsexual person
- Whether you have a disability
- Any other ‘protected characteristic’ such as race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin religion, belief or lack of religion/belief, sexual orientation
If during the job interview the employer asks a question such as the above and then does not hire you, and you do not think there was another good reason why they did not hire you, you should consult a solicitor as they may have discriminated against you.
We hope you love our Indented CV or Résumé template and we’d welcome your feedback as always!