In part two of this three part guide, we delve into more detail on the correct way to format your CV.

Basic structure.

Name and contact details need to be clearly outlined at the top of the CV.

Next you might like to include a brief profile or synopsis of your key skills. If so, this should be clear and succinct.

Formatting.

  1. Keep it simple: avoid adding photos, fancy borders or coloured fonts, although do use formatting tools effectively to make your CV easy to read, e.g. bold for titles / lines to separate sections etc
  2. Make sure it is easy to read – the font size should be no smaller than 10/11pt, and ensure that it is consistent throughout the document.
  3. In most cases your CV should be no more, or less, than 2 pages.
  4. Check your CV again and again for typos and spelling mistakes, and get someone else to check it as well – don’t rely on your computer spell check as this isn’t 100% reliable and may bring up American spellings. Have you spelt liaising correctly?
  5. Avoid outlining your experience in paragraphs as it is difficult to pull out the key information quickly by the reader. The best approach is to use long bullet points of no more than 2 lines.
  6. Dates (month and year) should be given for all employment contracts and ensure the dates follow on from each other. It is best to explain any gaps rather than leave them for the reader to misinterpret, e.g. include time spent travelling.
  7. Do not refer to yourself in the third person – it makes the CV sound impersonal.
  8. Equally, when using bullet points, there is no need to use “I”.
  9. For more impact, use the past tense.

Have you found these tips helpful? Let us know in the comments below.

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