Dos and don’ts of CV/Resume Writing

Do’s and Don’ts of a CV_Resume Writing

Dos of CV/Resume Writing:

  1. Keep the CV/Resume short and concise
    No more than 2 pages of A4 size sheet. Prioritize information that is relevant to the employer. Adding irrelevant information to keep your CV long will not make you standout.

  2. Use bullet points to highlight your responsibilities & accomplishments
    Add your responsibilities and your accomplishments in bullet points. That makes it easier for the hiring manager to go through your role and understand how much value you brought in to the company.
    Note: Avoid long chunky paragraphs, it makes it harder to read and no one likes to search for relevant information within it.

  3. Outline your education and career history
    List out your education and career history in a reverse chronological order, i.e., starting from the most recent. Ensure you add your title, company name and start and finish date (the month and year) of where you have worked/ studied.

  4. Proofread your CV to check for grammatical and spelling errors
    Nothing gets your CV/Resume in a junk pile than going through a resume with grammatical and spelling errors. Having typos and spelling errors shows that you are not detail oriented and are clumsy.

  5. Optimize CV for ATS
    Most companies nowadays use an Application Tracking System to screen through CVs which eliminates CVs that do not meet the requirements set for the specific role. Ensuring your CV/resume is optimized with the right keywords, filling up the entire application form, keeping graphics to a minimum are just some pointers that will help in getting your CV past the ATS and into the hands of a human.

  6. Support your statements with facts and figures
    Listing out your success and achievements with the numbers shifts the minds of the hiring manager from what you do to what value you brought in at your workplace. Accomplishments showcases your initiative that you will take on the challenge and bring in the enthusiasm to do more for the hiring company.

Don’ts of CV/Resume Writing

  1. Use personal pronouns – “I”, “My”
    It is best to remove any personal pronounces as it is implied. The CV, after all, showcases your skills and experiences. Instead of writing, “I led a team of intern…”, it is better to write “led a team of interns…”. The phrasing is concise and effective and also, eliminates of repeating yourself with “I did this” and “I did that”.

  2. Experiment crazy fonts or colors
    Your CV should look good and be easy to read. Using a font that is cursive or funky will not do you any favors. Instead, use a font that is clean. We recommend – Times New Roman, Calibri or Arial with a font size of 11. Also, do not use multiple fonts. Stick with one font and use the styles of bold and italics to highlight the main areas.

  3. List salaries and benefits
    Listing out your salaries and benefits on your resume creates a negative impression or even a restriction in the minds of prospective employers which may cause them to not consider your CV for the job. It is always better to discuss salary and benefits in person at a later stage of the hiring process, preferably, during the in-person interview.

  4. Use your company number and email
    Do not under any circumstances use your company email and number on your CV. It shows that you are looking out for a job while you are at your desk. It may make the hiring employer wonder if you would do the same when they hire you. Instead, create a professional email address with your first and last name.

  5. Mention reasons for leaving your past jobs
    Your CV showcases your skills and expertise that markets why you are the best at your job. Having a reason list out such as “made redundant” does not benefit in marketing your candidature for the role. It is best to leave it out till the recruiter/hiring manager asks you the question about reasons for leaving the past job.

  6. Lie about your experiences and skills
    While there is nothing stopping you from lying in your CV/resume, there are consequences that you will face if and when you are caught. It will range from not being hired for your dream job to being fired and have your reputation tarnished if the employer finds out you have lied in your CV/resume. On that note, most hiring employers are well connected, having lied on your CV can also impact your candidature with other companies.

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