Research has shown that recruiters spend an average of just 9 seconds scanning your CV before deciding whether you are a potential fit for their vacancy. You might think this is unfair but as my grandmother always said, "if you want to catch a fish, think like a fish"
Look at it from the employers pespective: you have an afternoon set aside to sift over 100 CV's whilst juggling your day-today work and a bulging inbox full of urgent emails. You simply won't have the time or inclination to read through every CV in detail; infact according to the Independent the process of reviewing CVs has become ‘Tinderised’ with each CV given just a few seconds to stand out against the competition before being kept or cast aside.”
My colleague Aste Dahl wrote a fantastic post on five CV mistakes to avoid, which is really worth a read. What else can you do to ensure your CV grabs an employers attention?
- Get the look right: choose the right font and make sure it is the right size! Use 14 font for your name and 11 font for the rest of your CV. Use Ariel or another clear font style (Times New Roman works) – most importantly, remember your CV needs to be accessible to the reader.
- Use visual aids: bullet points, line breaks, bold formatting and tabs. These are all simple tools you use to make an impact.
- Avoid ready made templates: CV's are an opportunity for you to demonstrate your personality and individuality to an employer. Where possible add a personal touch to your CV so you stand out from the competition. Please note, some employers specify specific templates, if this is the case then do as the employer asks!
- Length matters: an employer potentially has another 99 CV's to look through. If your CV is too long, you'll loose the employer - the general rule is no more than two pages. However in some sectors such as Banking and Management Consulting, recruiters expect a 1-page CV. Remember, a CV that is too short immediately suggests that you don't have enough experience, which could potentially put you out of the race.
- Its all about consistency: make sure you are consistent in the use of bullet points, the font size and spacing on your CV. This projects professionalism and conveys strong attention to detail skills.
- Get feedback: book a quick query with one of our careers advisers for constructive feedback.