Putting together a CV? Or perhaps wanting to improve your strike rate with recruiters? The WellsGray team have over 20 years of experience and are more than happy to share some insider tips with you!
Resume Tips and Hints:
- Stick to standard font types like Arial, Times New Roman and Verdana, and avoid using coloured text or unusual designs.
- Avoid the use of italics as they can be difficult to read on PC screens.
- Keep your CV clear and simple. Start with your contact details, then list any relevant education completed, followed by your work history in reverse chronological order. Remember to include the company name, your position, the dates you were employed and between 5 – 10 bullet points listing your main duties in the role.
- Keep a ‘career objective statement’ to no more than 5 lines in length. It should be honest and in your own words. Good recruiters can easily spot a cut and paste from Google!
- Your resume will be the guide at interviews, so know it inside out. Information will also be validated through rigorous reference checking so don’t exaggerate.
- Show the entire length of service with the companies you worked for including months. For example, 2010-2011 could mean Dec 2010-Jan 2011 or it could mean close to two years. If you don’t specify, the recruiter will guess!
- Only briefly summarise any employment that was over 15 years ago. There is no need to list specific duties for a role you held prior to the invention of email or common usage of MS packages.
- Employers like to know a little about your outside interests. Choose one or two ways that you like to spend your free time to show the type of person you are. For example; attending music festivals (you are social), going hiking (you are healthy), fashion and beauty (you are well groomed). Anything more than that is unnecessary and will not be read by recruiters. Resumes are for skills and experience. Interviews are for showing your personality.
- Personal or character references will have no bearing on employment decisions and will not be contacted by recruiters. Leave them off the CV.
- Remember to both spell check AND proofread your CV. Then do it again. And again.
- Provide a cover letter which is specific to the role you are applying for. If your experience is a bit out-of-the-box for the position you are applying for, then use the cover letter to explain to the recruiter why you feel you should still be considered (again, Google-ing will be detected!)
- Finally: A recent and professionally-taken photo of you, well groomed and wearing appropriate office attire can help you stand out from the crowd. A photo of you laughing in a cocktail dress at a club in Mykonos six years ago will also help you stand out… and not in the way you want.
REMEMBER: Your resume is your front-line tool for selling your capabilities and landing you a great job. It’s not your Facebook page, so make sure it looks and sounds professional.
Author: Jill Wells
Jill Wells is the Managing Director of WellsGray Recruitment with over 30 years experience in the recruitment industry. Since 1998, Jill has built the reputation of WellsGray as one of Victoria’s leading specialist providers of temporary, contract and permanent staff, having proudly established long-term relationships with its clients and candidates.