There’s an art to creating the perfect CV, and if you don’t get this process right, there’s a risk that your resume will end up decorating the bottom of employers’ bins. So that you know which pitfalls to avoid when you’re writing this document, take a look at these five common CV mistakes.
1) A poor opening pitch
According to specialist recruitment service provider STEM Graduates, the first few sentences of a CV can provide a reliable insight into job candidates’ levels of literacy and their attention to detail. This means if you have a poor quality opening pitch on your CV, you’re likely to be disregarded by employers. So, it’s vital that you get this section of your resume spot on. In the first few sentences, you should make a compelling statement detailing why you’re the perfect candidate for the position.
2) Too long
Another sure-fire way to get ignored is to include too much information on this document. Recruiters and employers don’t have all day to read through your profile. They want to get to the essential facts as quickly as possible. This means you must make sure you only include information that’s strictly relevant to the roles you’re applying for, and present it in a clear and concise way. As a general rule of thumb, your CV should not be more than two pages long.
3) Format failings
Before they even read the words on your CV, potential employers will make judgments based on its format and general presentation. Therefore, if your resume doesn’t look the part, you may fall at the first hurdle. There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to format, but you should include basic contact information at the top followed by a brief personal statement detailing why you want the job and are the ideal candidate. You should also provide details of your employment and education histories, along with any experiences and skills you’ve gained. Don’t forget to mention any projects and extracurricular activities that could enhance your credentials too, and make the effort to ensure the document is presented nicely and is easy to read.
4) Too generic
Especially if you’re applying for multiple roles within a short period of time, you might be tempted to send out the same, generic versions of your CV for each job. This is a big mistake. Although this may be quicker and easier, it will mean your resume is much less likely to impress employers. Instead, take the time to tailor this document so that it perfectly reflects the specific requirements of individual roles.
5) Substandard spelling and grammar
Last but not least, don’t fall into the trap of failing to check your CV for spelling and grammar mistakes. If your resume is riddled with errors, you’re virtually guaranteed to put employers off. It helps to get the document checked over by a friend or family member before you send it off as a second pair of eyes might pick up on mistakes that you miss.