Don’t bore us, get to the chorus! That’s the mantra behind almost every chart-topping pop hit. Three minutes on the radio is all most get, and you better win audiences in that time-frame or you’re in the wrong business.
The process is not that different when it comes to writing your CV.
Recruiters and hiring managers may personally enjoy slow-paced novels or long, elaborate songs, but when it comes to your application, three minutes is all you get. If it takes more than that to go through, sorry, but “too long, didn’t read” and onto the NO pile.
There’s definitely too many CVs for them to go through to read 3 or 4 page long essays.
Therefore, we’ve come up with 4 essential tips to help you: we call them “TLDR to avoid TL;DR”.
T = Target your CV
We can’t stress this enough: there’s no such thing as a universal CV. Take the time and tailor your CV to each job application.
Let the job ad be your guide; never let it out of sight.
Basically, try to imagine what would the recruiter like to read. Then, present your skills, experience, and achievements as close to that as possible.
Try to hit all the crucial requirements. Identify the keywords in the ad, and use them.
Describe and market yourself using their language and you’re sure to grab the recruiter’s attention.
L = Long is wrong
Real-estate on a CV is a limited commodity.
It’s scientifically proven recruiters are allergic to having more than two pieces of paper in their hands.
So, whatever you write in your CV, write it on no more than two pages. Aim to fit everything on one.
D = Ditch the details
Get your point across in a direct, clear, and concise way.
Use efficient and relevant language, stay on track, and don’t bore the reader.
Avoid full sentences and make strong use of bullet points.
Keep your verbs active and your adjectives to a minimum.
Remember, your task is to list and describe your skills, education, past duties, and experience, not to explain all the ins and outs of your career. Save the details for the interview!
R = Right away!
As we said, you don’t have much time to grab the recruiter’s attention, so you better not waste any.
Make sure your relevant assets and most impressive achievements are screaming at them as soon as they look at your CV.
One good way to do this is to write a “qualification highlights” section and put it right under your name, on the first page of your CV. Think of it as your professional storefront. Here, you can list your most significant experience, abilities, certificates, and professional traits.
Indeed, you need to show the gist of why you should get the job in the first few lines; when the recruiter bites, they’re usually staying on the hook. This way, you will ensure they read your CV.