How to Write a Good CV
The value of a cleverly engineered CV is unquestionable. Your career advancement simply isn’t going to happen without it. It’s not quite accurate, however, to suggest that a CV is ‘well written’. A CV is of course a written document, providing you the opportunity to demonstrate communication skills, but much of the effectiveness of a CV is due to its organisation.
The measure of success of a good CV is the efficiency with which it makes the most important information readily available. While the order of presentation may vary in CV examples, the contents are more or less unvarying. The typical CV is comprised of the following sections:
- Personal details: Name; current address; postal address (if different); phone, mobile and email contact. Note that date of birth is not a standard requirement.
- Education: Full details of course, degree and institution names. Relevant subjects may be listed (no more than 3). Awards and achievements are always worth mentioning.
- Skills and qualities: You should list skills with a direct relationship to the position applied for, including any technical, general or transferable skills, such as team management or conflict resolution. These may be written as dot-points, though detailed examples build credibility.
- Employment history: Period of work; Job title; Company name; Key responsibilities (in a dot point list); Achievements.
It is common practice to work backwards chronologically from the present, giving particular emphasis to employment which is equivalent to the position being sought.
- Voluntary and community work: Organised as per Employment history. The value of this inclusion is the community or team-minded spirit that it communicates to a potential employer.
- Professional development and further training: List all relevant courses/training sessions
- Achievements: Awards, scolarships, citations etc.
- Interests and hobbies: Summarise (dot point) such interests as community, sporting or cultural activities.
- Referees: Supply the names of two or three people who can confirm your skills, experience and competence. (Make sure you get their permission before you list them.)
If you have presented the required information in full detail, in a manner which is articulate and attractive to the eye, your CV should stand up to even the most rigorous examination. We offer you our sincere good wishes in respect of the success of this project.
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