As you are all fully aware, your CV is the key to your success. It is also extremely important then to personalise your CV and not just to copy an example CV. When drafting your CV you need to make a number of decisions, and it's here that we would like to help you! We have noted a series of the most frequently asked questions for you.
Many people put their most recent work experience and their most recent studies at the top. Indeed these are the most relevant ones for the position, which you are applying for. The advantage is that the recruiter sees the most relevant information first, which is most important for him/her.
In particular, we advise people with a lot of work experience to put their most recent experience at the top. In this was you avoid the risk of the recruiter first having to plough through a whole list of less relevant work experience.
It is only best for you to opt for a non-chronological structure if you have a good reason for doing so. For example, if it is not immediately evident from your most recent professional work experience that you are suitable for the position. Where this is the case you can start your CV with that part of your CV with which you think you can convince the recruiter of the fact that you are the ideal candidate. This may, for example, be a job that you performed a few years ago and that fits in closely with the position for which you are now applying. Remember that your CV must be well organised and that the recruiter must be able to find all elements. Clearly state therefore for all stages in your career start and end dates, or at least the month and the year. Do not use this method if you just want to hide a period of unemployment.
If you are looking for a completely different job to the one that you have performed in the past, then it is best for you to state this at the top of your CV. Make a separate heading for this purpose. In it state what job you are actually looking for, where applicable, including a brief description. This can be useful, in particular, for ad hoc applications. Recruiters can then immediately see for which positions they can contact you and see that you are motivated to take up a similar position.
If your clearly wish to highlight on the basis of which strengths you set yourself apart from other candidates, you can also state this at the top, under the 'Profile' heading. Put it, for example, in a box at the top of your CV and in it only state the most important characteristics that indicate that you are the ideal candidate for the position and/or the company. In this way the employer is immediately presented with a picture of you. If he is looking for somebody with your profile, he will undoubtedly read your CV. Try to give concrete facts, such as '10 years' experience in a managerial position'. This is more effective than clichés such as 'flexible and dynamic'.
Your CV must be complete and contain all of your work experience, but that doesn't mean that you also have to give an equal amount of detail for each position. Just provide more of an explanation for the most relevant parts of your CV, such as a description of your job responsibilities. Always use keywords so as not to make your CV too long. People with a lot of work experience, will not have an excessively long CV as they just limit themselves to what is essential. Try to provide the recruiter with a summary of your career in 2 pages and try to convince him/her of the fact that you are the ideal candidate. If you are successful in this, he/she will invite you for a preliminary interview and then you will be given enough time to explain the full details of your career.
You not only need to customise your covering letter but also your CV to the position for which you are applying. The company is looking for a specific profile and it is a question of highlighting in your CV all of the qualities that the company is seeking.
Where applicable, adapt your CV to the job description so that the keywords in the advert can also be found in your CV. Also make sure that your CV and your letter of application are effectively tailored to one another in terms of content. Make sure that you state everything that makes your CV unique, such as important projects, which you have been involved in or success stories that you can take credit for. In the case of special performance achievements, you may also give statistics, so that recruiters can form a clear picture about the extent of the success, for example, "Expanding the customer base by x%", "Increase in sales by € x".
It is generally said that the font size may not be any smaller than 10 points and that the layout must be the same throughout your CV. You can highlight important things in bold. In addition, it is particularly important that your CV is well organised and neatly presented. You may certainly present yourself in an original way, particularly if you are applying for a creative job.
Companies are not only looking for people with a good knowledge of the subject, they are also looking for a specific personality. This is why many companies ask you to do a personality test before your initial interview. Many people find this a bit frightening, but you should not be put off. There are no right or wrong answers, you just need to answer the questions asked as honestly as possible. Here are a few tips from StepStone to get through the personality test:
Making applications is all about selling yourself. A rock solid CV is also a must then. Today we will give you a checklist for a CV that works.