As a job board, we have 1000s of CVs sent to us every single week so when it comes to looking for the right things, we’d like to think we have a good eye for it. However, when it comes to pointing out the bad…oh boy…we do see some ‘horrors’. Your CV is the first thing a potential employer will see (that’s if they don’t trawl through social media and yep, trust us, they do that!)
Here are our 10 CV horrors we have come across:
10. Swallowing a thesaurus
Personal profiles can provide a great summary of your skills and experience but listing a load of buzzwords to describe you lacks depth and meaning. Keep personal profiles informative and succinct.
9. Don’t get too personal!
It helps to list a few of your interests but that’s all you need. If you go into detail about how you were a teenage champion at ballroom dancing and then became a semi-pro swimmer before you turned 19 years old, it might detract from what’s relevant to this vacancy. We recommend you keep it short and snappy!
8. Talking in ‘third person’
This is an unusual thing to do and employers don’t especially like it. Everything you write should be about things YOU have done and that YOU have achieved. Writing in third person can comes across as a bit pretentious which may not put you in good stead from the outset!
7. An email address to make you LOL!
The title says it all. If your email address is firstname.lastname@example.org, think about how this might come across! Or how about email@example.com, it automatically gives a bad impression. Our advice is to just keep it to your full name with a dot in the middle, if you can’t have that, add your year of birth i.e. firstname.lastname@example.org
6. Your current work details
Although employers are legally obliged to request your permission before requesting a reference about you from a current or previous employer, not all employers realise this. So the risk is that they could contact your current place of work and ask about you, before you have got as far as resigning from your role!
Also, it’s best to use the space for more information about your skills and experience rather than contact details of your current employer.
5. A photo of your pretty face!
If you work in the entertainment industry and you’re a performer then yes, usually you would include a photo, but this is the only exception; otherwise it’s simply not necessary. Figures now show that most recruiters will look at your social profile before they even make a choice so they will see your pretty face then (let’s hope you have an appropriate photo on Facebook)!
4. Crazy Fonts!
Formatting and editing your CV is one of the most important things you need to nail. Having the font all the same size is a must and using bold lettering for the titles to break up the CV is standard. The one thing you DON’T do is use elaborate fonts or a mixture of fonts. Just stick to something clean and under no circumstances use Comic Sans…..
3. Annoying Buzzwords
You’re not auditioning for The Apprentice so using phrases like ‘dog eat dog world’, ‘survival of the fittest’, ‘people pleaser’ and ‘best of breed’ are likely to make a joke of your CV which you don’t want.
2. Pages and pages and pages and pages
The debate goes on and on as to what should be the perfect length CV. On one hand, a one-page document is great because the employer can see all the information on one page which means they won’t have to trawl through pages of text. However, on the other hand, if you are going for a senior position you will need to provide more detail. As a guide, around two pages is the ideal.
This is the most common problem we come across with CVs. 50% of people make a grammar or spelling mistake on their CV. When an employer sees a mistake on a CV it creates a negative impression from the offset. If they spot more than one error on a CV, then you are reducing your chances of being considered for a vacancy. TIP – Check twice, send once!
And that’s it. If you follow these 10 steps it will mean that your CV will be idiot proof and you will be proud to put it forward for a vacancy.The only thing now to do now is to search for some more jobs.
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