How to make your CV great again?

About a successful CV from the side of a recruiter and a hiring company

We are all facing a lot of difficulties since the pandemic started. People have lost their jobs, some businesses were shut down or closed temporarily.

However, all the bad things that happened in our lives could give us some pros.
So push your luck.

The first thing you have to get is that your CV is a way to present yourself as a professional.
And you have to show recruiters that you are the specialist they are looking for.

Imagine you found a vacancy you were looking for, what would you do first?
Here are several essential steps you should take before applying:

1) Check the vacancy description thoroughly and find out who exactly the company is looking for.
Since you are presenting yourself as a specialist, you have to show the recruiter that you are a good fit. Define the most important and critical requirements and write your CV according to them.

2) Try to look at yourself from the recruiter’s perspective.

  • How many CVs do you screen per day?
  • How much time do you spend on screening one resume?
  • What kind of CV would draw your attention?

These questions will help you select the relevant experience you have for the vacancy and put it at the beginning of the CV. It will be easier and faster for a recruiter to understand that you have a good match with the position you are applying for. Show the relevance to the vacancy to make sure that your CV won’t be skipped.

3) Try to look from the company’s perspective.

  • What is the main idea of the project(s) they do?
  • Who are their clients?
  • How does it help their clients to improve their lives/businesses?
  • What are the main goals of the company?

You can find all this information on their website and get a picture of a company and its needs, goals, etc. It will help you to understand it as a business, their issues, and which opportunities for growth they have.

This will help you to find answers for the following questions:

  • What do they expect from the candidate who applied to the position?
  • What will be his role in achieving their business goals?
  • How can an employee help the company to grow?

BTW, you can ask a recruiter these questions at an interview. It will help you to clarify all the previous points and get to know the company as it is. You will get the expectations and make sure whether you would like to be a part of it.

Also, in this way, you will show a recruiter that you care about the company from the beginning. You are not a person who is here only to get money but the one who cares about giving the profit to the project.

4) While creating your CV, focus on your achievements and results, not on actions.

Again, look at yourself from the sides of a recruiter and a company.
What will you think about the candidates reading on their CV:

  • I took part in redesigning a web site;
  • Participated in project development;
  • Project planning and estimation;
  • Supported projects in the cryptography sphere.

Would you understand that such candidates are great employees trying to do their best? I guess not.

Well, a good recruiter has to care about putting together really great and strong professionals that can contribute to the company goals and let the business grow.

So, it makes sense to show your results and achievements you’ve got before:

  • I developed back end part of the project from scratch;
  • I optimized the code and reduced the downloading time for the web page by 50%;
  • I optimized the template for the kick-off meeting that helped our team to clarify the customer’s technical requirements;
  • And so on.

Skip your old experience in your CV if you think it’s not relevant to the position you are applying for. Skip experience that doesn’t sell your skills and experience.

Be honest. It is the only way not just to be a good employee but also a great person, who everyone wants to work with. Your transparency might give the extra points to show that you are a trustworthy person.

5) Summary.

Also, it is a good point to create a summary with your relevant experience to the vacancy and put it at the top of your CV. And again, focus on your achievements and the things which could fit the position. Forget about things like “I am a responsible, result-oriented person and a team player”. These soft skills are important, but they cannot be estimated via a resume. Your experience and result you’ve got will show more profit to the recruiter than cliched soft skill description.

6) Customize your CV.

Check every vacancy description carefully and customize your CV. It will be really helpful especially if you are a Junior Developer or you are looking for a job abroad. Emphasize the relevant experience you have, use result-oriented formulation, and avoid the information which doesn’t sell your professional skills.

7) Don’t take a lack of responses personally.

It’s hard to represent yourself as a specialist, so don’t take it personally.
Try to see the process of applying as a funnel:

  • How many companies have relevant positions for you?
  • How many CVs have you already sent?
  • What is the job market’s reaction to your CV? How many responses have you got?
  • What can you improve in your CV?

Finding a job is a long and time-consuming process. You have to take it in a mature way managing the results and considering what you can do to strengthen them.

Your CV is the only way to describe your professional life, but anyway, your personality is much more multifaceted. So take it easy.

I wish you good luck with the job hunting.
Believe in yourself! And let the best offers come to you.

Julia Bodun
Business Development Manager at GUID