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CV Hints and Tips

When writing or updating your CV, it can be difficult to know exactly where to start. Advice on how it should look can vary depending on who you ask and even on your field of expertise. Should you start with skills, training and qualifications or jump straight into your work history? We’re here to help answer those questions.

A Personal Profile

This is your first opportunity to really sell yourself to your potential employer.

  • It should be punchy and impactful.
  • Sometimes it’s referred to as an ‘Elevator Pitch’ - how would you describe yourself professionally in no more than four sentences?
  • A personal profile is as individual as you are, so it can vary in structure and can even be dependent on your specialism.
  • Try to avoid too much jargon or corporate phrases – your potential audience may not be as technical as you.

Career History

  • Keep this concise but still informative – you don’t want to end up with a six-page CV!
  • Your work experience should be in reverse chronological order, so your most recent role first – this will make it easy for the reviewer to understand and follow your career history.
  • If you have a wealth of experience, your earlier roles can be included but we recommend these are listed simply as job titles and employers.

Key Achievements

Take this as an opportunity to really sell yourself, don’t be afraid to shout about your great experience and achievements! However, be comfortable talking through these in an interview – know your own history. You want to be able to answer any questions on the information you’ve provided.

  • Highlight your skills in your CV, especially if you’re in a specialist job.
  • Remember to keep in mind your audience, will they be able to understand it?
  • Make sure the information is accessible to all audiences, this is a sure-fire way to positively impact the reader.

Think about the skills you can show off in formatting your CV. If you’re a design professional, your CV is a blank canvas to show off your work. Lastly, remember to include any relevant and appropriate qualifications.

What to avoid

  • CVs under a page or over three pages
  • Generic CVs - tailor your CV to the requirements of each job description you’re applying for
  • Spelling and grammatical mistakes, whilst keeping font and size consistent

Keep an eye on our Careers website for any vacancies – we can’t wait to hear from you!