The Productive and Discoverable CV
Your Curriculum Vitae is the most financially important document you will ever write. When it works, the doors of opportunity open for you. When it doesn’t work, you don’t either, so it needs your full attention. Your CV acts as a powerful ambassador, opening the doors for interviews, the questions interviewers will ask and the ultimate goal, job offers. Our consultants will show you how to make your CV effectively target your desired jobs and secure the interviews you need to get them.
How to Design Your CV
Your CV must be discoverable and productive to get shortlisted for a job interview. Focus on keywords and presentation to ensure CV discovery by recruiters, and then concentrate on content and the 10 second test to get shortlisted.
Electronic CV submission is the norm for most job applications. CVs are stored in data bases from which they are retrieved by targeted searches using job appropriate keywords, as you would run a google search. You must know the essential keywords for each job application, otherwise your CV will rest at the bottom of the data base and you will never get interviews.
After your CV lands at the top of a search, 10 seconds is the average length of time a recruiter will devote to its initial screening for key job criteria. Your CV must be clear, concise and targeted to the job. Eliminate all irrelevant information.
Getting Started: Keyword Research
Job titles and the job descriptions are the two sources of keywords for your CV.
- Job Title: target the job title used in the country or company where you are applying to work. For example, General Practitioners in the UK, Ireland and Australia are called Family Physicians in Canada and the USA and Family Medicine Consultants or Specialists in the Middle East. The wrong job title will make your CV discoverable for jobs you don’t want.
- Job Descriptions: deconstruct target job descriptions for the relevant keywords. Qualifications, skills, experience, achievements, success profile, targets, outcomes are all sources of keywords which must be in your CV to ensure that it is found for the jobs you want.
The golden rule here is don’t do anything unusual. A standard, well laid out document on a word or pdf file works best with data base search engines.
- Design a clear, easily readable structure and consistent layout.
- Spell check thoroughly
- Ensure there are no errors of content.
- Include a summary of qualifications, skills and experience.
- Use standard fonts
- Use standard templates (too common).
- Use landscape page layout (too awkward to read).
- Use more than 2 fonts (too messy).
- Add images, tables or graphics (search engines penalise)
- Use coloured text (black is best).
The content of the CV must be tailored for each job application, targeting the key job criteria and success factors in a succinct, neatly set out document. Start with a summary of your qualifications, professional licence status, experience, skills and achievements and then provide further detail in the body of the CV, showing precisiely how they will benefit the employer.
Where possible, add examples of transferrable skills important for the job success: effective team working, efficient time management, excellent communication skills, analytic problem-solving abilities, creativity and leadership. Demonstrate perseverance and resilience.
Once the CV is complete, run the spellcheck, draft a cover letter and send it off.
Any questions, please get in touch.