Every employer searches for different qualities in a candidate. The most obvious items they are on the lookout for are the skills and qualifications they’ve requested in the job advert, and maybe a few more as a bonus.
But each employer, not matter how similar the job title, will be looking for different things. The problem with this for the job seeker is that it can be frustrating trying to figure out how to write a CV for each employer so they stand out.
We recognise how difficult this can be, so to help you focus upon what the employer really wants to see, here are the two things you must include on your CV:
Far too many job seekers are still stuck in the ice age when it comes to writing a CV. They focus heavily on making sure all their skills and achievements are contained within 2-3 pages of A4 (try to write just 2 pages) and fail to recognise what really matters to the employer.
This generic style of CV writing will not impress an employer, and will likely result in rejection after rejection. This is because the CV fails to address the most important and relevant points.
The hiring manager is only interested in reading about what will benefit them and the company – that’s it! It really is as simple as that, and although it sounds extremely obvious you’d be surprised at how many people still fail to implement it.
If you’ve already written a CV you need to consider starting from scratch again. This will allow you to focus entirely on the needs of just the one employer. Yes, this does mean you need to write a tailored CV for each and every employer you apply too, no matter how similar the roles.
The employer wants to feel special and wanted, which is precisely why this method works. Your CV needs to be as relevant as possible to the role. This doesn’t mean that you should completely remove everything that isn’t, but instead put that into the background.
If you have an extensive amount of work experience you should only list the tasks for the ones that matter. Stating a company name, job title, and a brief description of your role is more than enough for something which is irrelevant and not recent. Save some valuable space for the more important roles which you can expand upon.
The employer will certainly thank you for this and recognise that you are clearly the right person for the job. If you make them work hard and offer a ‘you must read between the lines’ CV, you are already setting yourself up for failure.
An indication of performance
Finally, now that you’ve written a relevant CV you can move onto the next important stage. You must create a CV that demonstrates your proven track record, and most importantly, your performance.
An employer cannot solely rely on your bold claims. Everybody in the recruitment industry knows that a CV writer is biased and will embellish as many points as possible. The problem with this is that the employer has a hard time splitting the embellished from the accomplished!
With this in mind, we would recommend you make it easier for them by providing cold hard facts about your performance. The work history section should not just be a list of tasks and responsibilities – it can be so much more with a little creativity and thought.
Aim to supply a few examples of performance which clearly prove your worth. This could be anything ranging from sales figures and revenue, to deadlines met and project management. Try to find examples that are comparable to the role you’re applying for, so the employer can quickly imagine how you’d perform for them.
Provide instances of outstanding achievements and performance, which can either be done as an entirely separate section, or added to each role in the work history section. The choice is yours!