Not ‘jazzed up’ with different fonts, bright colours, borders or clip art
Up to date
Not have any gaps in your education/employment history
Checked for spelling and grammar
What should a CV look like?
While there are no fixed rules, you should cover the following:
A short statement about your skills, personality and qualities. It should be tailored for each job you apply for.
List your secondary schools and colleges with the dates attended. List your qualifications and grades. Leave out junior and primary schools.
List any paid work, work experience or voluntary work you have done. Start with the most recent first.
For each job, give:
A brief outline of your duties
If you don’t have much paid work experience, put down any voluntary work you have done, e.g. helping out at a school, school work experience.
Include details about any certificates gained for timekeeping, sporting achievements, Duke of Edinburgh awards, etc.
Include any relevant skills or certificates that you have that might be useful at work, for example a driving licence, a first aid certificate, ability to speak a foreign language, experience of computer software such as Microsoft Office.
Include interests that will help show you as interesting and sociable, especially if they are relevant to the job. For example, an applicant to a catering company whose hobby is cooking.
Include the contact details for two referees who will provide references for you. Suitable people for this include your last employer and a school teacher or College lecturer.
If you do not want to include them on your CV put ‘References available on request’.
Note: Laws on discrimination mean you do not have to include your age and date of birth
Everyone has ‘transferable skills’. One example is ‘being a good communicator’ – someone who is sympathetic, a good listener and able to help others to sort out their problems. This skill is needed for a range of different jobs, for example, a doctor, shop assistant or a teacher.
Look at the list below and identify some of your transferable skills. Add these to your CV:
THIS IS ME…
A good laugh
Gets on well with people of all ages
Sociable, chatty, bubbly
Good communicator, confident
Has leadership skills
Likes to be the centre of attention
Open to new ideas and suggestions, flexible worker
Bit of a daydreamer
Helped to build a garden shed
Construction skills, planning and budgeting skills
Play for a local football team
Teamwork skills, shows commitment/reliability
Babysits for family
Childcare skills, happy to take on responsibility
Helps out with household chores
Organised and efficient, food preparation/catering experience
Took part in school play
Presentation skills, confident in front of an audience
Enjoy computer games, using the internet
Good IT skills, enjoy researching information
Enjoy fixing my car/bike/scooter
Excellent practical skills, technically minded, problem solving skills
Like to do things my own way
Like to be told how to do things
Able to follow instructions accurately, methodical worker
Attended school on time, every day
Good attendance records, punctual and reliable
Didn’t take many exams at school but regret it now
Willing to train and gain further skills and qualification
Good at getting friends to do what I want them to do
Able to organise and motivate others, effective negotiation skills
Always hand homework in on time
Able to meet deadlines, excellent planning skills, effective time manager
Friends come to me to talk about problems
Sympathetic, good listener, caring attitude
Worked in a school shop
Experience of cash handling, happy to take on responsibility