Creating A Strong CV – Why It’s An Essential Tool In Your Job Search

Eva Finn

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Your Curriculum Vitae is a written representation of your professional background, qualifications, skills, and achievements. More times than not your CV is the first impression that a potential employer has of you.

The right format, order, and content you include in your CV can make all the difference in getting your dream job and make you stand out amongst your competitors. 


Here is our CV Cheat Sheet:

Format of the Content

  • Ensure the font and size you have chosen are consistent throughout your CV. Using various fonts and font sizes can make your CV hard to read and unprofessional. We recommend using the font Calibri.
  • Always use bullet points, and avoid paragraphs. You must remember that your CV is not the only one in front of your potential new employer. They will have so many to read they won’t have the patience to dissect large paragraphs of text to find out what previous experience or qualifications you have. Using bullet points ensures your content remains clear & concise. 
  • Avoid using tables to display information. It cannot be guaranteed that your potential new employer will be reading your CV on the same device or platform as the one you used to make it. Tables often do not transfer well between various devices and platforms and can potentially cause more harm than good to your CV.
  • Be aware of the sector you are applying to. The CV format that is acceptable for an application to a role in marketing in comparison to a role in the financial sector would be quite different. Be sure to showcase your Microsoft Word abilities.
  • Quality content is often better than creative content.


Order of the Content

  • Order your experience from most recent to oldest. The employer is always going to take the most interest in your most recent roles. 
  • The order we recommend is personal details -> Education -> Experience -> Interests.
  • Always put your education before your experience when a qualification is necessary for the role. This information will be one of the more pressing pieces that the employer will be seeking out.
  • Under the references section, we recommend stating that they are available upon request. It is no longer standard practice to list your referee's name and contact details on your CV.
  • Putting the content of your CV in the wrong order can make you look like an unsuitable candidate at first glance. 


The Content

  • Avoid giving unnecessary information like date of birth, home address, and profile picture. This is no longer standard practice and can come across as unprofessional. 
  • Listing a hobbies section Is not necessary and can often be text heavy.
  • Keep your previous experience relevant. If you have multiple years of experience then detailing the tasks you were responsible for in your teenage part-time job is not necessary as it adds no real value.
  • If you have had multiple jobs in similar roles ensure the detail you give on each is varied. Don’t duplicate the wording for different jobs. We recommend finding the job spec for that specific role and using the details given here – it is unlikely that 2 job specs will be the same. 


A CV that is concise, focused, and tailored to the job you are looking for is a strong CV. It should highlight your achievements and skills, be free of errors, and give a feel for the valuable employee that you are. 

By following these tips, you will create a CV that will stand out amongst others and be an aid in you being offered your dream role.