If you’ve never written a CV or Resume before, it can be quite a daunting and, somewhat overwhelming task.
Of course there are many resources and templates online that can guide you, but sometimes you can lead yourself down a rabbit hole of looking at these too much, and not just focusing on the basics.
The important thing to remember with a CV is, the intention of it is to pique interest in you enough to get you noticed, and have the potential employer wish to speak to you – they don’t want to see every single detail of your life, what you do at the weekend for fun, how much you love the Batman movies, or what you had for dinner last night.
Sure, they want to know a bit about who you are, because this allows them to see if you could be a potential good fit for the company overall, but they’re really just looking for an overview.
Here are a few tips for you to use when creating your first or next CV.
The length of your CV is quite important, and the key is to give enough information for relevance, but keep it as short as you can to give that information. Usually a CV should be about 1-2 A4 pages. Unless it’s extremely relevant to the position you’re applying for, then any more than that is simply not required, and they may not even read it all. People are busy, so they don’t have time to read all that – they simply want an introduction to you, and will ask you more details during the interview stage.
Despite what some people believe, there really is no right or wrong way to format a CV. You definitely want it to read easy, so creating sections, short sentences, and avoiding massive paragraphs that just seem like a wall of words is all you really need to do.
Start with your personal details at the top of the page, such as your name, address, date of birth and contact details. Then create sections for education, employment history, skills, passions, and hobbies.
Also don’t be afraid to be honest about where you feel your strengths and weaknesses are: this, if nothing else, shows that you’re honest, willing to improve, and can acknowledge that you’re human and can overcome failures.
Each of these, obviously apart from the education and employment history should simply be a sentence or two.
When writing a CV, there are some people out there who will encourage you to exaggerate or even downright lie about your skills, passions, and even your education and employment background. This is not only a bad idea due to being morally wrong, but it’s incredibly silly due to being illegal in some places, and at the very least, if found to be lying or withholding important information on a CV, you would most certainly lose your job, and may have trouble finding another one. So, before you go applying for Science Jobs that you’re not properly qualified for, then you should maybe re-think that plan.
The thing is: if there’s a job you do want, but you’re not qualified for, then there are always ways around that, such as applying for an internship or entry-level position and working your way up, or even getting some qualifications that may be needed.
Honesty is always the best policy.
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