At Odyssey Recruitment we read hundreds of CVs every year, many are almost perfect and play a big role in getting a candidate the job of their dreams overseas, however in almost all cases there are two or three things that need changed to make sure your CV performs as well as you deserve it to.
We therefore decided to compile a shortlist of the 5 most common CV writing mistakes to avoid.
1 - Don’t Make it Generic
Human resources departments will often deal with thousands of CVs each year and so it’s crucial that you make yours stand out from the crowd. A common mistake that many people make is to make their CV very generic, as they feel that keeping it wide and understated will be the most safe option.
In reality this is far from the truth, as many employers will simply discard CVs they feel are too generic. To avoid this happening to you it’s best to tailor your CV to reflect your personality and strengths, as well as to make sure it perfectly fits the job that you are applying for.
This will not only make it interesting for the reader, it is also likely to make it stand out from the crowd more. Further to this by focusing specifically on the skills that make you suitable for the role it will help you to appear like the perfect individual for the job - remember CVs are all about convincing an employer you are right for the job that you are applying for.
Stick to a Single Language
This one appears obvious. Naturally it is highly unlikely that anyone has ever switched from English to German or French in their CV for no apparent reason, however people regularly submit CVs that are in a mixture of British and American English.
Writing in either language is unlikely to hinder your CV’s chances of success, however altering the style in which you write during the CV will count against you. The medical job market is fiercely competitive worldwide and something as small as that can be enough to end your chances of getting the prospective job of your dreams
Whilst there are far too many differences in the language to list, there are some basic rules to follow. Often in American ‘S’ becomes ‘Z’ such as in authorise/authorize or specialise/specialize, this is the most common error made in the CVs that we read.
Make sure that before you send yours to a potential new employer that you make sure it’s all in the same language - it’s too basic an error to lose out on a dream job because of.
3 - Use Industry Lingo
As a medic it’s vital that you are keeping up to date with the latest advancements and trends within your speciality. Use your CV to show off this knowledge and understanding of the most modern techniques and technology. Constant advancements are always being made in healthcare and, especially in the UAE and Singapore, demonstrating your knowledge of these not only shows you are a skilled medic, but also that you are a quick and open learner who is genuinely interested in the profession.
Don’t be afraid of using industry jargon, so long as it doesn’t work to obscure the point you are trying to make. As mentioned earlier you are attempting to prove that you are the right person for the job, and demonstrating an advanced knowledge of what the role requires can only help.
4- Include Plenty of Detail About Your Current Role
Often many people will focus on providing plenty of information relating to the past. Qualifications they may have earned, previous experience and what they feel their major strengths are. This can all too regularly be at the expense of providing information about your current job.
The first place that many employers and recruiters will look at is your current role. This can help give them an immediate idea if the individual is right for the job, or if it will be too big a jump or unsuitable. Include your most recent successes, any new skills you may have learned on the job, along with what is commonly expected of you and why you have managed to succeed in the role.
For medics examples of recent tricky procedures, or the number of patients you have worked with in the role, or past year, can act as the perfect proof that you are right for the new job. Remember though to always keep the examples relevant to the role that you are applying for - don’t just put in experience for the sake of it.
5 - Keep it Professional
In the medical profession above almost all else you want to illustrate how professional you are. The role that medics perform is so vital and so highly skilled that the last thing you want is to create an unprofessional image through your CV.
There are a number of factors that can be crucial in ensuring that you convey the right image to readers. Firstly avoid any fancy fonts, these may look nice however they create the wrong tone for a CV. Stick to a business like text - such as Arial, Times New Roman or Verdana - and make your CV stand out due to its content, not appearance.
Further to this make sure that all the text is black, and the background is white. Try to avoid using any images or logos as they often ruin the format of the document whilst adding very little, and keep non-text items such as dividers, lines and bullet points to a minimum.
Finally make sure that your email address is a professional one. It may seem like a minor point but having nicknames and the like in addresses really doesn’t provide the polished professional image that you are looking for. If you are considering applying for a new job, and your personal address isn’t hugely formal then it might be an idea to set up a new one specifically for job applications.
Plenty of free email providers are available, and it takes little time to create them, yet can make a huge difference to your image.