"Send us your updated CV."
This is the beginning of every hiring process. At the outset you are going to be evaluated based on your CV. The prospective employer has only minutes to spare for a primary evaluation. In your CV you are trying to convince the employer that you have the right qualification, skill sets, attitude and experience essential for the position applied for. If you succeed in that, definitely you will be called for an interview.
Unfortunately, vast majority of the applicants fail in this first stage itself. They fail not because of their deficiency in qualification, experience, skills etc. But their CVs fail to create an impression that this is the candidate which the employer is looking for. The employer doesn’t know you personally at this stage. For him, your CV is you and your face. So, your CV should communicate whatever you want to communicate to the prospective employer.
Q. What do you want to communicate to the prospective employer?
You want to tell him through your CV that you are the apt person for that job.
Q. How can you do that?
You have to identify the description of that job, the responsibilities in that position etc. Carefully analyze what the employer is looking for in the ‘Mr. Candidate.’
Once it is done, link your qualifications, skills, experience etc. with that. Now you are telling the employer that I am the right candidate for that position. Every alphabet, comma, dot, free space etc. has relevance and meaning in your CV. You should be careful. A misplaced word may affect your prospects.
Now you can start....
I wish to add some tips at this point.
- Keep in mind that your CV is your marketing document.
- In your CV you are trying to say ‘what you are’, ‘what type of a position you are seeking’ and ‘the qualification, experience and skills to support your candidacy.
- Be careful while selecting the format of your CV. Take into account the requirements of the specific position.
- Your CV is not a document to express your graphics skill.
- Your CV should prominently express yourself as a professional.
- It should contain your Name, Address, Telephone number, E-mail id etc.
- ‘Objective statement’ – is it essential? It is your choice. Depending upon the situation you can decide on this. If you add an objective statement, it should be absolutely clear and precise. But most of the objective statements that I have seen are just a bunch of words, vague and do not convey any objective.
- Don’t blindly copy other’s objective statement. Think a while and convince yourself. Keep in mind the position you are applying for.
- At your option you can provide a ‘professional synopsis’ after the objective statement, if any. It gives your picture as a professional in nutshell. If you are experienced, consider using this option.
- While listing your educational qualification, start from the latest. All relevant qualifications, certifications etc. have to be listed.
- Training programs, workshops and symposiums attended can be listed, if relevant. E.g. IFRS training.
- Work experience – Start from the latest. Give details like ‘position held’, ‘reporting authority’ etc.
- In work experience ‘job description’ is very important. Be honest. Give prominence to those aspects which are relevant for the position applied for.
- Use all your accomplishments whether in work or in social life to project your personality.
- Don’t forget to add special skills which are relevant for the position applied for.
- Give personal information to the required extend. In certain countries asking gender, caste etc. are illegal.
- Give two references. Contact two prominent and relevant personalities and tell them your requirements. Provide them sufficient information. Get their consent and list their name. DO NOT USE RELATIVES AS REFERENCE. They may be prominent persons but they are your relatives. So their opinion on you may not fetch value in this case.
- Be specific and clear in your claims. Don’t make general statements in CV.
- Create a habit of collecting documentary support for all your positive deeds and achievements. E.g. suppose you have taken a career guidance session in your nearby school for the HSC students explaining them the potential of CA/CWA/ CS profession. Make sure that you collect a certificate from the school authorities praising your service.
- If you have any work/social experience projecting you as a team player, use it properly. It is a big ask in today’s work environment.
- Make sure that your CV is précis. Limit it in two pages.
- Check for spelling mistakes.
- Don’t use the same CV for all job applications. Prepare CV according to the requirements of each opening.
- Regularly go through the “opportunities” page of the leading Newspapers and understand what are the qualities, qualifications and skills asked by recruiters for specific positions. E.g. Finance Manager. This will help you in drafting your CV.
- Do not use photo copies of your CV while applying for a job. Take a fresh printout in a good quality paper.
- Regular refinement is required in making your CV perfect.