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horrorboy
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#1
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can anyone give me any tips on how to write a CV since at the moment i just can't get a job so im gonna do a better CV. Im at university so the standard needs to be high
thanks
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dogtanian
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What have you got now?

(As in, what do we have to work with?)


One thing: at your age, you will not have a big enough list of qualifications/employment history to warrant more than a page. People just won't read it if it's longer. The amount of 16 year olds who walk into where I work and hand in three page CVs for a sales assistant job, despite only ever working in their aunt's hairdressers is astounding. My uncle has worked on a short term contract basis for a good 20 years and still only has a CV of two pages, and he's highly qualified. Make your CV no longer than it needs to be. If you condense it well, you'll look far better.
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horrorboy
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(Original post by Hayley...)
What have you got now?

(As in, what do we have to work with?)


One thing: at your age, you will not have a big enough list of qualifications/employment history to warrant more than a page. People just won't read it if it's longer. The amount of 16 year olds who walk into where I work and hand in three page CVs for a sales assistant job, despite only ever working in their aunt's hairdressers is astounding. My uncle has worked on a short term contract basis for a good 20 years and still only has a CV of two pages, and he's highly qualified. Make your CV no longer than it needs to be. If you condense it well, you'll look far better.
thanks the only one i have at the moment is from high school lol it just contains name, address, qualifications, employment etc its really basic. Since im at uni its gotta be a lot better im sure. The thing is the only work ive ever done are paper rounds lol (and a catering job which i got sacked from) which isn't very appealing. Also im quite ashamed of my A level results - C, D and E.
Ive not much to write on so im trying to make it look as good as possible
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amo1
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(Original post by horrorboy)
thanks the only one i have at the moment is from high school lol it just contains name, address, qualifications, employment etc its really basic. Since im at uni its gotta be a lot better im sure. The thing is the only work ive ever done are paper rounds lol (and a catering job which i got sacked from) which isn't very appealing. Also im quite ashamed of my A level results - C, D and E.
Ive not much to write on so im trying to make it look as good as possible
just say have a levels and is competent in the following subjuects... sports teams... try to keep it one side if u can but not like 1.2 pages either 1 page or two pages full
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Nikki J S
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I've been told to always focus on your positive skills and abilities and try to match them to the criteria of whatever job you're going for. So, for example, if they say they want a team player, you try to match what you've done with what they're looking for. There're loads of sites on the internet to help you write a good CV but most of them charge, although a useful free site is http://www.alec.co.uk/cvtips/ . Alternatively, your local library is likely to have some books on writing a good CV, and you can get advice from the Connexions service, or your careers advisor at uni.
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horrorboy
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(Original post by Nikki J S)
I've been told to always focus on your positive skills and abilities and try to match them to the criteria of whatever job you're going for. So, for example, if they say they want a team player, you try to match what you've done with what they're looking for. There're loads of sites on the internet to help you write a good CV but most of them charge, although a useful free site is http://www.alec.co.uk/cvtips/ . Alternatively, your local library is likely to have some books on writing a good CV, and you can get advice from the Connexions service, or your careers advisor at uni.
hey cheers i get what u mean but im not sure what job im gonna be looking for. The site's quite good
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Nikki J S
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(Original post by horrorboy)
hey cheers i get what u mean but im not sure what job im gonna be looking for. The site's quite good

You're welcome.
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Brown Patrick Bateman
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Typical structure is like this:

Your Name
Address, Email, Phone Number, Date of Birth

Education
[Years, names of university/6th form/school, qualifications, in reverse chronological order]

Work Experience
[Dates, names of employers, your title and duties, in reverse chronological order]

Other Skills
[e.g. IT proficiency, languages spoken, driving license]

Other Interests
[Extracurricular activities, positions of responsibility, sports/music/drama etc.]

Referees
[Full contact details of two people - typically one employer and one teacher/tutor]

Keep this to 2 pages maximum.

A bit differently mine's here and breaks down experience by sector.
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Scott-jsa
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#9
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I would steer away from any CV templates or CV writing companies that mass-produce standard CVs.

Check out http://www.cv-masterclass.com - it's run by Steve Holmes, professional CV writer and formerly the CV expert on Monster.co.uk. He's been a moderator on our forums for about a year now and is the single most knowledgable person I've met when it comes to CVs.

I would start off your CV and create something simple and easy to read, which conveys your main experience, education and skills.

You can always take this document and tweak it later on.

In terms of "how to write it", it's hard to give you a definite way to do it. Steve wrote recently in response to a question about verb tense:

Thank God someone is awake enough to notice this level of detail! The simple answer is that a CV contains not one single jot of normal grammar, not anywhere. It is a set of conventions: phrases; bullet points; statements and facts linked by semicolons - nowhere in a CV is there a conventional sentence, nor paragraph, nor any need for you to fret about the tense. You can chose whichever tense you feel comfortable with. I generally use a sort of imperfect journalistic present tense, thus:

"Latterly part of the senior management team working on annual and monthly strategic forecastic, product planning and the scoping of new initiatives..."

But there are no rules.
There is no need to make your CV longer or more padded out than it needs to be, but you should make efforts to fill however many sides of A4 you use.

For personal statement you should be looking at 3 or 4 lines about where you are coming from, followed by a small bulleted list of your main assets. It is also pretty useful to tailor this part to the job you are applying for. For example, when applying for a job in a shop you may consider highlighting your people skills.

Work experience is fairly self explanatory.

Education varies. Going for a job in a shop while you are studying, then you don't need to go into detail about your course. However, when applying for a Gap Year placement, your education section should detail your key subjects (whatever you think is relevant).

Hobbies and Interests. Walking, Reading, Listening to music. Give me a break. Everyone does this. :rolleyes: If you have nothing relevant or interesting to put, then leave the section out. And no, your fetishes aren't relevant!

Use a font that is easy to read and you may consider increasing the standard line spacing to make it easier still. Your section headings should be bold, but not distract too much from the body text.

Write as if you would write for the web - short sentences - use text breaks - something that reads quickly. Use bold scanner stoppers to breakup text a little more.

Your document won't be read - it will be scanned!

It's kinda hard to generalise advice about CVs because they really *should* be a personal document. It's easier to work from an existing draft and poke and prod it until it's good enough!

Scott
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horrorboy
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(Original post by Jools)
Typical structure is like this:

Your Name
Address, Email, Phone Number, Date of Birth

Education
[Years, names of university/6th form/school, qualifications, in reverse chronological order]

Work Experience
[Dates, names of employers, your title and duties, in reverse chronological order]

Other Skills
[e.g. IT proficiency, languages spoken, driving license]

Other Interests
[Extracurricular activities, positions of responsibility, sports/music/drama etc.]

Referees
[Full contact details of two people - typically one employer and one teacher/tutor]

Keep this to 2 pages maximum.

A bit differently mine's here and breaks down experience by sector.
wooow not to be nosy but i just wanna congratulate you for your results simply Perfect!
thanks for all your useful advice its really helping
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horrorboy
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[QUOTE=Scott-jsa]I would steer away from any CV templates or CV writing companies that mass-produce standard CVs.

Check out http://www.cv-masterclass.com - it's run by Steve Holmes, professional CV writer and formerly the CV expert on Monster.co.uk. He's been a moderator on our forums for about a year now and is the single most knowledgable person I've met when it comes to CVs.

I would start off your CV and create something simple and easy to read, which conveys your main experience, education and skills.

You can always take this document and tweak it later on.

In terms of "how to write it", it's hard to give you a definite way to do it. Steve wrote recently in response to a question about verb tense:



There is no need to make your CV longer or more padded out than it needs to be, but you should make efforts to fill however many sides of A4 you use.

For personal statement you should be looking at 3 or 4 lines about where you are coming from, followed by a small bulleted list of your main assets. It is also pretty useful to tailor this part to the job you are applying for. For example, when applying for a job in a shop you may consider highlighting your people skills.

Work experience is fairly self explanatory.

Education varies. Going for a job in a shop while you are studying, then you don't need to go into detail about your course. However, when applying for a Gap Year placement, your education section should detail your key subjects (whatever you think is relevant).

Hobbies and Interests. Walking, Reading, Listening to music. Give me a break. Everyone does this. :rolleyes: If you have nothing relevant or interesting to put, then leave the section out. And no, your fetishes aren't relevant!

Use a font that is easy to read and you may consider increasing the standard line spacing to make it easier still. Your section headings should be bold, but not distract too much from the body text.

Write as if you would write for the web - short sentences - use text breaks - something that reads quickly. Use bold scanner stoppers to breakup text a little more.

Your document won't be read - it will be scanned!

It's kinda hard to generalise advice about CVs because they really *should* be a personal document. It's easier to work from an existing draft and poke and prod it until it's good enough!

Scott[/QUOTE

thanks loads thats probably where i went wrong (apart from my lack of experience) i just rambled on about stuff they probably got bored. I'll just use simple statements then :cool:
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horrorboy
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though i know not many company's ask for CV's since they all want you to apply through application Still they are very useful when needed
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Scott-jsa
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You're absolutely right! But having a good CV ready to go out can give you a fairly sound basis from which to write out applications! Unless you get those awful questions like, "when was the last situation you came across that was outside your comfort zone and how did you cope?"!!! :confused:

Also, folks shouldn't ignore the importance of cover letters as well. Although the letter is less likely to be read (and retained) by the recruiter, you can still use it to provide a little more information. If your CV is the product, the cover letter is the writing on the back of the box!

Scott
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-EL-
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Can there be time gaps in a CV?
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Vienna
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(Original post by -EL-)
Can there be time gaps in a CV?
yes, but unless you explain them its not going to look good.
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Brown Patrick Bateman
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#16
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(Original post by vienna95)
yes, but unless you explain them its not going to look good.
Is it OK to just put in years (e.g. 2003 - 05) rather than exact months?
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Scott-jsa
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Yeh putting in years instead of months is fine.

It's easy enough to plug small gaps in your CV - a few weeks / months - but anything longer gets harder and you should be looking to justify it in some way.

Scott
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-EL-
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Could you be accused of dishonesty for giving years instead of exact months?
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Vienna
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#19
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(Original post by -EL-)
Could you be accused of dishonesty for giving years instead of exact months?
I doubt it. The employer will ask if they wish to know which particular months you started.

you need to explain situations where there is an unusual time gap, eg.

1999 - 2001 ABC College
2002 - 2006 University of XYZ.

What happened between the summer of 2001 and the course entry in 2002? You may have done some travelling or work or you might have had to resit all your exams because you were such an appalling student.
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-EL-
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If say there is some higher education in between 2001-2002, which is not relevant or abandoned, do you have to fill it in? or if there is some short part time job which isn't really important?
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