Every week someone will ask me to help them write a better CV. Unfortunately there is no one size fits all solutions but here are some great ways to write a better CV.
So onto the most important things to do:
1.Start with a good template
It must be simple, clean and easy to view all the information. I have built one here that you are welcome to use. Other tools like https://enhancv.com allows you to create some really good looking CV’s but this style needs to suit you personality. You can also get some good templates through Microsoft Office.
2.Outcomes over Output
Easily overlooked but always support what you say with evidence. The best type of evidence is an achievement but other business metrics can also be really good indicators. For example you could list a responsibility as “Project Management of complex, large scale information technology projects”. Or you could say: Successfully delivered a number of > $10 million projects on time and on budget despite the involvement of over 50+ resources and multiple business units.
3.Keep it simple
A CV is there just to ‘open’ the door for you, don’t overthink it, try to keep it to two pages (I love 1 page CV’ even more). The aim is to get to the interview and help the interviewer host a more powerful interview (it won’t score you a job).
4. Let some personality show
Lets people in and let them know who you are as a person, it is ok to show a touch of personality e.g. My spare time is spent with family and brewing craft beer.
5. Get social
Update your various online profiles to reflect your skills and experience, twitter, linkedin, blog etc. It is also a good idea to increase your activity (tweeting, blogging, events, posts) as this will help you get noticed.
Buy people you trust coffee and ask for feedback on your resume. The more feedback you have the better.
7. Proof read out loud
This will help you minimise grammatical errors plus help you practice your pitch.
8. Say Less
As you go back in time (reverse chronology) it is ok to spend less time talking about your oldest experience. For example, for a role someone had 20 years ago, at most they may only use a single line to describe what they did in that role.
9. Show expertise
Professional development is key to demonstrating expertise, particularly in emerging areas where there is an absence of deep experience. Ways of doing this include things such as; community participation, side projects (including advisory work), writing / blogging, speaking engagements etc.
The CV is just about getting a seat at the table, the most important thing is how you interview and build reputation and relationships in the community; former bosses, hiring managers, recruiters – all are important!
Hope that helps and good luck!