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Are CVs still relevant?

Are CVs, also known as resumes outside f the UK, still relevant today? What is the real purpose of a CV and how do you create one that gets you noticed in today’s competitive job market? Career coach Eunice Asante at The Workers Journal finds out.


Photo by Ketut Subiyanto: https://www.pexels.com/photo/graduate-with-papers-and-laptop-excited-about-getting-job-4560150/
Photo by Ketut Subiyanto at Pexels

The short answer to this is yes, yes and yes. Although like most things, the world of recruitment in the West has evolved beyond printing copies of your CV and personally handing them out to employers, recruitment has not evolved beyond the need for CVs of some sort.


Most employers, in my opinion, still require a document outlining your career history, skills and experience, whether that is a copy of your CV, an application form or access to your social networking profile.


Regardless of the format used, the fact is a candidate record of some sort is required to make recruitment possible. Therefore, CVs are needed and relevant.


Why CVs are important for securing a job?

CVs are essential because they give a snapshot of who you are and what you can achieve. As a career coach, I look through CVs for a living and have probably looked through hundreds this year alone (no exaggeration). Within 30 seconds of looking at one, I can tell a lot about a candidate and their potential, and I'm usually right.


Photo by cottonbro: https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-in-black-long-sleeve-shirt-having-a-job-interview-5989930/
Photo by cottonbro at Pexels

Think about your CV as your personal advertisement, displaying who you are to the world of work. Your CV should tell your story. A well-crafted CV uses language and keywords and paints a picture of achievement and value to attract attention. A well-crafted CV will do this just as well as a brand’s ability to create an advert to attract their audience to buy.


Your CV is the advertisement recruiters use to decide if they want to buy into you as a candidate. Therefore, if you don’t put much effort into your CV, you’re most likely telling a recruiter that you’re lazy and don’t care much. If mistakes and discrepancies exist in your CV, you create the impression that you are not focused. This will put most recruiters off.


Photo by Kampus Production: https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-in-yellow-dress-shirt-using-computer-8204317/
Photo by Kampus Production by Pexels

Let your CV evidence your achievements and correctly focus on your values, people will sit up and take notice. You can achieve this by having a well written CV. Although updating them is not always fun, it is worth it if you want to advance your career.


A well written CV may influence the type of opportunities that are offered to you and even the ability to negotiate your employment terms.


For example, through coaching clients, I've realised that salary negotiations don't begin with a job offer. They begin when recruiters look through your CV. The information on your CV communicates your calibre and what it will take to acquire you as an employee. Salary and employment negotiations could improve for more people if they spent more time on their CVs.


Photo by Ann H: https://www.pexels.com/photo/close-up-shot-of-scrabble-tiles-on-a-blue-surface-2789779/
Photo by Ann H at Pexels

Here are my eight top tips to create a CV that stands out.

  1. Adapt your CV to the requirements and specifications of the role you are applying for.

  2. Incorporate industry keywords strategically and systematically throughout your CV.

  3. Avoid throw-away terms that do not describe your value and impact.

  4. Highlight what you have achieved, how this added value to your current or previous employer, and why it's significant.

  5. Quantify your value wherever possible.

  6. Don't just list your job description when listing your employment history.

  7. Instead, focus on the impact and your value and how it relates to the job you are applying for.

  8. Aim to keep your CV to two pages, three if you are in senior leadership.

For more information and to download a free list on how you can avoid common CV writing mistakes, visit www.theworkersjournal.com, scroll down to the bottom of the page, add your details and check your inbox.


Read more of my posts here and follow me on Instagram @iameuniceasante

Until Next Time

Eunice

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