Your CV is your personal advertisement. Together with a covering letter, it gives you an opportunity to sell yourself and impress a potential employer.

Always remember that the employer may have another 50 CVs in the in-tray. Lots of CVs don’t even get read because they are too long, too boring and badly laid out. You need to make your CV stand out from that pile. Make it easy to read!

The 6 golden rules for your CV

  1. Start with a summary
  2. Try and keep it short, but remember to include all relevant professional experience
  3. Keep it logical and include clear headings for the following sections:
    • Employment history
    • Education history/qualifications
    • Languages – state whether basic, proficient or fluent
    • Computer literacy
    • Professional memberships and offices held
    • References
  4. Always check for spelling mistakes or grammatical errors
  5. Always include a short factual summary at the very beginning. This grabs the reader’s attention within the first 10 seconds of reading your CV. Don’t use clichés such as ‘I work well on my own and as part of a team’
  6. Lay out your CV neatly. Don’t use formatted boxes or tables – many employers have HR software that stores CV in plain text format. If you use tables, the text is often stored in the wrong order.