CV Tips

First impressions count. That’s why it’s worth taking time to perfect your CV. It’s the first chance you get to be in front of a new employer. So how do you sell yourself as the best person for the job without coming across as a know-it-all?

Here are a few pointers to ensure your CV gets you to the next stage:

Remember that applying is a competitive process. You need your CV to stand out from the crowd.

It’s an opportunity to give more than just facts. An employer wants to see you have the right skills for the role and their company.

Tweak your CV to suit that specific position. Highlight what you’ve achieved — it really will impress and the employer will recognize you’re keen.

Honesty is absolutely the best policy. Don’t exaggerate your achievements and make sure the information is up-to-date. That one extra qualification or skill could make all the difference between getting an interview or not.

Personal Details

Start with the obvious information — your name, address, phone number and nationality. Then you can elaborate. Summarise your skills, experience and career aspirations in a few sentences to show how suitable you are for the job.
Career History
List all the jobs you’ve had in reverse chronological order. For each, give your job title, the company name and period of employment. Follow this with a description of the role and your key responsibilities, highlighting the relevant skills you’ve developed and any achievements.

Above all, employers are interested in what you’re doing now or have done recently, so emphasise your most recent roles.

Don’t go into reams of detail for the last 30 years. Highlight the most recent and relevant and sum up the rest. Don’t leave gaps in your career history. If you’ve been pioneering enough to take a year out to travel, say so. It could give you the edge over someone who hasn’t.

Qualifications and Education

Take the same approach as with your employment history. Begin with your most recent qualifications and work backwards. If you’re studying at the moment, expand on any areas of relevance.


Tell the employer why you got involved in a particular interest or hobby. If you can tie in your skills and achievements with the job selection criteria, so much the better.

Presentation and Layout
Research shows that, on average, managers spend fewer than two minutes examining each CV. So visual impressions count. A well-structured, clear and concise CV will encourage the employer to read on.

Key guidelines

  • Two pages is just the right length for a CV
  • Use subheadings wherever possible, and don’t squash everything onto the page by using tiny typefaces
  • A standard typeface is ideal — fancy fonts and gimmicky design do nothing for clarity
  • Keep the language formal but clear with succinct sentences. Your personality will come through at the interview stage
  • Avoid jargon and abbreviations
  • Take great care with spelling and grammar. The slightest error can result in your CV being rejected.

Heard enough? Ready to apply? Then email your CV to