5 Non-Negotiable CV No-Nos - [website] Email Print
Published: 31st of Jan 2018 by: Staff Writer

Let's face it: job hunting sucks. You send CV after CV and hear nothing back from 95% of the companies you apply with. But why is that? Well, probably because you're making at least one of these mistakes...

5 non-negotiable CV no-nos, from someone who gets a LOT of CVs through his inbox…

1. When sending your CV out to companies, never send a blank email with just your CV attached. Ever. Simply saying, “Please see my CV attached” isn’t good enough either. Show me that you know which job you’re applying for (often companies recruit for more than one position at a time, and I don’t have the time to figure out which one you meant to apply for), show me that you understand a bit about our company and what we do, and show me that you can construct full sentences. Believe me, it makes a difference.

2. Not including a cover letter. This is a big one. Having a perfectly laid out CV is great, but failing to include a cover letter telling me a bit about yourself and your background means your CV will probably end up in the junk pile. Use your cover letter as an opportunity to show me who you are and what you can offer - let me get to know the person behind the bullet list of tasks you used to perform at your old job. That’s how you get your foot in the door.

3. Failing to proofread the living daylights out of your CV. Yes, spellcheck is important, but it’s also a given. What I’m looking for, since you mentioned your “keen eye for detail”, is consistent use of fonts and spacing, a good layout and clear headings. Your CV represents you; tiny errors add up and leave a bad impression - spend some time on your CV, have a friend read through it; there’s no excuse not to.

4. Not tailoring your CV and cover letter to the job you’re applying for. I get it. You’ve been at this for what seems like (and may be) months now. But the fact is there’s a ton of people applying for the same job you are - so what makes your CV stand out? What makes your CV easy for me to look at and say, “This might be the one”? Use your cover letter to show me that you’re applying specifically at our company, and use the job spec posted in the job advertisement to link the skills in your CV to those of the available position. Never leave me with the impression that I’m one in a million companies you’ve thrown your CV at.

5. Not following the instructions of the company posting the job ad. I can’t believe I have to say this, but if you’re asked to use a specific subject line in your email application, then do so! If you’re asked for a cover letter (which you should always include anyway), don’t dare send your application without one. This is really the first time you’re making contact with your prospective employer and right off the bat you’re showing us that you struggle to follow basic instructions. If you were in my shoes, would you give you a call?

Staff Training is a soft skills training provider. Contact us at 0861 996 660.

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