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What is a CV?

A CV is your first chance to highlight your skills, qualifications and experiences to an employer, in order to get an interview.

CV should contain the following information:

  • Contact details - name, email address and phone number. Do not include your age, date of birth, marital status and nationality.
  • Personal profile - a few short lines to summarise your skills and experience, make it relevant to the sector you are looking for.
  • Work history - list any paid jobs, volunteering and placements. Start from the most recent experience. Include name of the employer, your job title, the dates you worked there and what your responsibilities were.
  • Gaps in work history - if you have any gaps on CV where you have been in employment and you have been attending any training or caring for someone or bringing up a family, add this to your CV to explain the gap.
  • Education history - include the name of the qualifications, the institution where you attended and the dates you were there. Start with the most recent qualification and work your way back.
  • Hobbies and Interests - this is useful section to include in your CV if you do not have much experience and if your interests are relevant to the role you are applying for.
  • References - you do not need to provide full references at this stage, if you are through to the next stage or if you are successful securing the role, the recruiter will ask you for further information. In the meantime, include 'References are available on request' on your CV.

Remember to:

Keep the same Font throughout the CV.
Use headings to make the information easier to read.
Use bullet points to break down the information.
CV should be no more than two sides of A4.
Be clear and concise as most employers take seconds to review a CV.
Read the job advert/description and tailor the CV for the role you are applying for.
Check your spelling and grammar. Get a family member or friend to read it over for you.