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How to write a recruitment consultant CV
In this guide we look at how to write the perfect CV for recruitment roles.
The basic sections you’ll need for your recruitment CV are:
Name and contact information
This section should include your name, address, phone number(s), email address and website (if applicable).
Do also include your Twitter and LinkedIn handles in this section, where these help demonstrate that you’re involved with your industry. In the recruitment sector, the ability to build a personal brand and network are extremely important. Your activities on social media can help demonstrate to prospective employers that you have these skills. Find out more about building a great LinkedIn profile here.
We recommend that you include a profile under your contact details. This is a short section – sometimes called a personal statement – which tells the prospective employer exactly how you’re suited to the role. Write it with reference to the person specification.
Your previous experience should be presented in the work history section, in reverse chronological order.
- Do emphasise skills and experience relevant to the target role. This means when writing a CV, you should be tailoring it every time you send it out to a recruiter.
- It’s okay to list responsibilities, but do also speak about your achievements where possible.
There are certain traits that recruitment agencies really value – and emphasising these within your work history will give you a better chance of landing an interview. These include, for example:
- That you are a 360 recruiter – i.e. you can deal with the recruitment process end-to-end from sourcing, screening and selecting to hiring and onboarding candidates.
- That you are capable of building and working your own client bank through networking, hosting events etc.
- That you are a good sales person with great negotiation skills.
- That you have hit, or preferably smashed, previous billing targets consistently.
- That you can work autonomously.
- That you have worked with clients and candidates in the particular sector they are hiring for (e.g. legal, marketing, etc).
Generally there’s no universal qualification or degree that’s required for a recruitment role. However, a thorough subject knowledge of the sector you want to work with is advantageous and will help you better match candidates to clients. There is nothing more frustrating for clients than being sent unsuitable candidates – it wastes their time and sends a clear signal that you don’t understand their needs.
Examples of how’ve acquired and used particular key skills are generally included within your work experience. A separate skills section isn’t therefore strictly necessary. However, if you have space, you might want to reemphasise some of the key skills that the employer has included in their person specification. Where possible, provide details of how you have acquired the skill or used the skill effectively.
If you’re not sure which skills are typically the most important to employees within the industry, check out this job profile.
As for skills, achievements are usually included within your work history. However, if you have any particularly impressive achievements that you’d like to emphasise, a separate section could be added. This might include any industry-relevant awards you’ve achieved that aren’t specific to a role.
Membership of a relevant, professional organisation can help demonstrate a commitment to your industry. In the UK, you might for example want to join:
- The Recruitment and Employment Confederation “Driving standards and empowering recruiters to be brilliant.”
- Association of Professional Staffing Companies “Giving firms involved in the recruitment of professional talent specialist support and a distinctive voice they need to be successful.”
- Association of Executive Search Consultants “Sharing a deep commitment to the highest quality standards in executive search and leadership consulting”
- Association of Labour Providers “Promoting responsible recruitment and good practice for organisations that supply the workforce to the food processing, agricultural and wider consumer goods supply chain.”
- Association of Recruitment Consultancies “Operating in the best interests of recruiters, promoting the industry, and providing excellent support for its members.”
NB. Some of the above will only be open to you if you are trading as a business. If you are a member of just one of these bodies, you might want to include a mention to this somewhere else on your recruitment consultant CV – like our example.
If you have contributed recruitment-related articles in the past,
Skills and achievements can be included within your work history and other sections – so they are not strictly necessary. They can however be helpful if you want to reemphasise to the employer that you’re a great fit for the role.
Whilst the interests section is not obligatory, it can help to further demonstrate that you’ve acquired and used key transferable skills. These might be, for example, great communication, teamwork, leadership or the ability to train.
Originally published 11th February 2016. Updated 23rd May 2020.