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NB: This CV template was originally published on 7 October 2016 and has been fully updated for 2020.
How to customise your retail assistant CV template
Our retail assistant CV template with its lovely blue striped design helps your CV to stand out for all the right reasons! This is an excellent choice for those that would like to add a little colour to their CV – but not too much.
The subtle light blue adds that all important colour, but doesn’t move the eye away from the important details. On the contrary, the blue colour attracts the eye to each section and makes it easy to navigate. With the hiring manager spending as little as a few seconds scanning your details, every second counts.
We’ve also updated this CV since it was originally published to get rid of the tables, so it’s now ATS-friendly.
Here are our top tips for customising your choice of CV template:
Take your time
Take some time to carefully craft your CV and give yourself the very best opportunity. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have all the skills the employer has requested. Take the time to write a CV that showcases your best attributes, and how your current skill set can be transferable.
You should never underestimate how important it is to get this part right. For more information, please read our article on ‘The importance of a good CV‘.
One of the most important parts of your CV is the summary at the top. This summary is often titled ‘Personal’ or ‘Objective’ statement, and serves as an introduction to your CV.
Prospective employers tend to skip over your contact info and move straight to this section because it tells them so much about you. Make sure this part of your CV explains:
- Who you are
- Why you fit the job description
- What you’re looking for
Change the colour
You can change the blue bars on this CV template to any colour you want. This is helpful if (a) you don’t like blue, or (b) you don’t have a colour printer, or (c) your blue ink cartridge has run out!
The blue bars are table cells, so just click to the left of the cell, then right click and choose ‘Borders and Shading’. Then click the shading tab and you can choose any colour you like from there. Similarly, you can adjust the headings to complement your choice.
If you prefer, you can get rid of the light blue shading altogether. Just go to the shading tab, click the drop down colour menu and choose ‘No colour’ from underneath the palette.
If you’re not sure whether to use colour on your CV, try this article: Should I add colour to my CV?
Use important keywords
Make sure your CV includes important keywords. These keywords are often found in the job advert, and are vital to your success. Getting an interview through your credentials alone is not always enough.
Using the same keywords as the hiring manager will instantly grab their attention. Keywords can relate to anything, from action verbs to specific hard and soft skills. Here are some examples of keywords you are likely to see from a role in the retail industry:
- Customer service
- Problem solving
- Quick learner
You should always use the same words on your CV as seen in the job advert. If you’ve already written your CV check back over it to see which words mean the same and can be changed accordingly. If the job advert is short on detail, check out some job descriptions for inspiration – for example:
- Retail assistant on National Careers Service
Avoid silly mistakes
Check, check and check again! There are some blindingly obvious mistakes that job candidates ALWAYS make when putting together and submitting their CV – but they still keep making them!
Around two-thirds of applications will be rejected solely based on a mistake. Whether it’s a spelling or grammatical error, or even a formatting or presentation issue – don’t give the employer an excuse. With so many other highly qualified and error free CVs to choose from, the outcome of rejection is inevitable.
Read our guide on ‘5 ways to ensure your CV doesn’t end up in the bin’ if you want to avoid the worst mistakes.
Don’t bend the truth
Are you considering telling a few little white lies to make your CV look a little more polished?
Avoid embellishments and lies at all costs if you want to be hired for the right reasons. The employer is well rehearsed when it comes to filtering out the truths from the lies, and you may be rejected without ever knowing it.
Our article on lying on your CV will help you get the right mindset.
Show a passion for your industry
Whatever area of retail you’re interest in working in, show a passion for the industry. For example, if it’s fashion, make sure your love for fashion literally leaps off the page – like our example CV. If you’re working in an area that is very visual (e.g. fashion, homeware), including details of your Instagram account or Pinterest page where you post regularly on the topic can help show your passion. You might also like to include your Twitter account for the same reason.