3 things you must include on your CV
Most job seekers know which sections are a must for their CV. Work experience, qualifications, grades from school or college, and so on. However, there are also more sections which should be included if you want to really impress.
Although the following three suggestions are not mandatory, we would highly recommend including them. These sections, if written correctly, will add extra value to your overall application.
Here are the 3 things you must include on your CV if you want to impress…
Hobbies and interests
Job seekers often fail to see the value in their hobbies, and sometimes even remove this section altogether. However, the hobbies and interests section can have a positive influence for recruiters who are looking for a good fit for their organisation.
The way to make this section work for you is to include activities that recruiters would consider to be desirable. For example, going to the gym or other active pursuits are attractive to employers. This is because they suggest you’re likely to be a healthy individual. Someone who doesn’t take many sick days will be a more attractive candidate.
Acting or performing arts are also desirable because they suggest you might be a confident and perhaps articulate individual. Great team working skills are often required, so performing arts may also demonstrate this.
Public speaking, presentations and meetings are often a part of daily tasks. So if you are able to demonstrate your high level of communication through your hobbies, this would further bolster your credentials.
Hobbies to avoid on your CV are the ones which don’t add any value. You are always looking to get the most out of each section, and further demonstrate your abilities. Walking the dog, getting drunk on the weekend, or visiting the cinema regularly will fail to do this.
If you’re still not convinced that your hobbies can be beneficial to your chances of success, please read our fantastic article – How important are hobbies to a CV?
So you think it’s obvious to a recruiter from your education or experience that you have a particular skill? Unfortunately, it’s not.
Recruiters skim through CVs and spend just a few seconds on each one. If they don’t immediately spot the skills they are looking for (i.e. those on the job specification), your CV will end up on the reject pile.
List the skills you have as set out in the specification, and your skill level. If they are looking for a soft skill (such as teamwork or leadership), include evidence on your CV that you have that particular skill. For example, rather than listing ‘Leadership’ you could write:
‘I have proven leadership skills having supervised teams of up to 30 in my current and previous positions.’
You can see how an actual example works better than simply saying you have the skill. If you choose to write cliché statements without providing evidence to backup your claims, how is the employer meant to believe you?
Consider creating a ‘Core Skills’ section near the top of your first page. Assuming you are able to match all or most of the skills requested in the job advert, aim to list the main ones in this section. This will instantly grab the attention of the hiring manager and make it easier for them to short list you for an interview.
To help you decide upon the key skills which are required for every CV, here are – The five skills your CV must have for success.
Sometimes called an ‘objective’ or ‘personal’ statement, it’s your opportunity to grab the recruiter’s attention and keep your CV in their pile of ‘potentials’. The best statements will be no longer than 3 lines and will explain the following:
- Who you are
- What you are looking for
- What you have to offer (in relation to the role)
Here’s an example:
‘I am a solicitor with 3 years post qualification experience in private client. I am flexible, having previously managed a busy mix caseload of Wills and conveyancing transactions. I am looking for a position in a mid-sized firm with the potential to progress to partner.’
For more personal statement examples, please visit the Aston University – Birmingham, UK.