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CV advice – what makes you different?

As we venture into the summer months of graduation parties and relaxation following the sleepless nights that came before exams and dissertation submissions, it might be time to think about what's next.

Yes, you have graduated, but so has everyone else in the class that you sat in everyday for three years. Maybe some of them have aced their interviews and have their first jobs lined up and ready to go, but what about those of you who haven’t? Now really is the time to sit down with a coffee (with all the added sugar needed to get over those late nights) and think about your CV.

When working on entry level positions, we speak with hundreds of graduates a week who are all looking to apply for the same roles, and often, when we ask ‘why you?’, we don't get a real answer. So here are our top tips for writing your cover letters and CVs!

Keep it simple. You may have found a font that you are completely obsessed with, but we don’t need to see it! Try sticking to a clean Ariel 10 font that is easy to read and easy on the eye. This also includes the length of the CV; the key is to try and fit enough information on two pages. Anything else can be put in the cover letter.

What are you proud of? As a graduate you may not have extensive experience to put on your CV, so in your cover letter, talk about something you are proud to have achieved. It can be study related or something you have done in your extra time, just try to link these achievements to a skill set you have learnt that might be attractive to a future employee.

Relate to the JD. If you are applying for a specific role we would suggest including key words in your cover letter that are highlighted in the job ad or description. If you need to have an ‘analytical mind set’ – talk about a time in your life where you have had to do this.

What makes you different? …the real question here is who are you and why should someone hire you over your class mate? Try to include how you would describe yourself, talk about your key skills, and how you believe others would see you.

Short and sweet. Talk about all the above, but we are not asking you to write an essay here. We would usually say stick to ½ – 1 page of A4.

How about putting this into practice? We have a couple of graduate roles on at the moment and would love to speak with you and see if you may be the right fit… so get tweaking those CVs and send them to us at [email protected] or give us a call to find out more at +44 (0) 1702 481650. 

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