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Top tips on crafting your CV

Congrats on making it to the end of your studies! With graduation approaching, you may be feeling a little overwhelmed by the whole job search process. One of the first and most important things you’ll need is a good CV. Your aim is to get noticed by potential employers and stand out above the others. To make sure your CV is up to scratch, we’ve put together some tips to help you get started.

Promote yourself Start off with an introduction, it's important to make a strong first impression. Start with a brief summary of your academic or professional experience, highlighting your most relevant qualifications. Be sure to include your career goals and how they align with the position you're applying for. Keep it short, aiming for a maximum of two to three sentences. You can expand further on your cover letter. Make sure you include your name, phone number and an email address where you can be contacted. You don’t need to include your date or birth, nationality or address on your CV.

Customize your CV for each job While it's important to have a strong general CV, customize it for each job you apply for. Highlight the skills and experiences that are most relevant to the position. Tailor your CV not only to the job, but also to the company culture and values. Research the company and try to incorporate their language and style into your CV.

Highlight your education Your education is an important asset, especially as a recent graduate. This should start from your GCSE’s (or equivalent) qualifications and you can also include any relevant coursework, modules and academic achievements.

Showcase your experience Even if you haven't had a full-time job, highlight any internships, volunteer work, or extracurricular activities that demonstrate your skills and experience. You should show the company name, your job title, the dates worked and a brief description of what you did. With your most recent experience at the top. Extra tip: Start bullet points with action verbs like "created," "managed," or "led".

Include relevant hobbies If you have any hobbies or interests that relate to the job, include them on your CV. This can make you standout and spark interest with the employer.

Keep it concise Aim for a one-page CV, focusing on the most important information. Many companies use applicant tracking systems to screen CVs, so try to use keywords from the job description to increase your chances of getting through the initial screening process. Employers are looking for candidates who not only have the necessary technical skills, but also strong soft skills such as communication, teamwork, and problem-solving. Make sure to highlight these skills on your CV. Extra tip: Don’t forget to proofread! Check your CV for spelling and grammar errors.

Have references ready You don’t need to add your references directly on your CV, but have these in mind as you will need to provide these if you get through to the next stage. At least one of your referees should be a professional such as your previous employer if you have one or you can ask your university tutor!

If you have a LinkedIn profile it’s a great idea to add this link on your CV or share with employers. If you haven’t, we recommend setting one up as many recruiters advertise jobs and approach people directly on this platform. It’s also a great way to get networking!

By following these tips, you can create a strong CV that showcases your skills, education, and experiences, and helps you stand out in a competitive job market. Be persistent! Job searching can be tough, but don't give up. Keep applying and networking until you find the right job for you. Remember, your CV is your chance to make a great first impression. Taking the time to create a well-crafted document can make all the difference in landing your dream job. Graduating from university is a huge achievement so be proud of yourself. You can now look forward to the next chapter of your life.


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