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Thursday, 28 January 2021 13:38

5 Pointers to Compile a CV that will Make you Stand Out in 2021.

A Curriculum Vitae aka CV or resume forms an essential part in searching and applying for a job vacancy. With the current state of the job market, and with more and more people losing their jobs, it is important, now more than ever, that your resume (CV) makes you stand out among the vast number of CVs HR Managers or recruitment agencies are getting.

Remember that a CV is a tool you can use to market yourself. It is your first step to try and secure an interview. So, before you send out your CV or apply for a job, it is important that you create a brand for yourself that will not only impress but also get you on the interview short list.

Consider these 5 pointers to compile your CV that will make you stand out in the crowd during your job search in 2021:

1.   Keep it concise but impactful!

Imagine how many people apply for the same job that you are applying for. Imagine you being the HR Manager or recruiter having to go through all those CVs. Long elaborated resumes do not grab attention but rather becomes a deterrent because there is simply no time to read through all the details. Leave the detail for the interview. Keep your CV no longer than a page or two at most. Put in concise but impactful information about yourself in bullet points making it easier to read.

2.   Design is Key.

In the advertising world, what stands out or grabs your attention visually is normally what you would want to buy, or which sparks an interest. Generally, people like something that looks good visually. Having said that, resumes should do the same but should still look like a professional document. Use design elements, but don’t go overboard. Use eligible font and a reasonable font size no smaller than 11pt.

Another common question is, “should you include a photo of yourself on the CV?” Generally, it is not recommended unless the company asks for a photo. In countries like the UK, USA, and Ireland, for example, it is a definite NO. But in countries like, for example, Spain, Austria, France, Germany, Middle East, South America and Africa, photos are recommended but also cautioned depending on the organisation and type of vacancy you are applying for. To stay on the safe side, rather not include a photo. Keep in mind, if a recruiter is interested in you, chances are they will check on your social media profiles, yet another reason why it is vital to keep a clean online presence. 

Below are a few examples of a design and layout templates for a professional CV obtainable from the internet. The type of company and position will definitely determine your look and feel.

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3.   List Your Hard and Soft skills as well as Previous Experience.

Soft skills are as important as hard skills. It is important to list both these skills sets in keywords and bullet points. Don’t make the recruiter look for the information. Hard skills are typically gained through obtaining your degree or diploma but are also teachable abilities which are easy to quantify. These are skills like, for example, how to do tax and accounting, how to operate machinery, how to do computer programming, how to type or speak a different language, etc. Soft skills on the other hand are also sometimes referred to as people skills or interpersonal skills.

Tip: The critical soft skills that employers are looking for in 2021 would include skills like:

When listing your past job experiences, make sure to list the company, your job title, the timeline you worked in that position and your exact responsibilities and duties. Mention any previous job accomplishments or highlights. List all jobs and experience, even if there are no relations to the current job spec or title. The variety will showcase your skills and abilities even more. If you need to sharpen up your soft skills contact The Mindspa Institute for a full list of course outlines.

4.   Be Available and Easy to Get hold of.

Recruiters do not want to search through your entire CV to get your personal information. Make sure it is visible at the top, perhaps in the header. Put a contact number where you can be reached 24 hours. Ensure you always have airtime and data, and that you constantly monitor your emails. It is pointless to go through all the effort to set up the CV and send it out, just for you to be unreachable and unavailable.  

5.   Make it Personal.

Showcase your personality and the type of person you are through listing extra interesting things about you, for example, if you volunteer at a soup kitchen, or an interesting hobby, even something like running the comrades or riding the Epic bike race. This not only gives recruiters more insight to what type of person you are but also shows things like dedication or determination, work-life balance or your selflessness and caring nature.

Searching for a job can be exhausting and demotivating at times. It is especially important for you to stay motivated and keep trying with determination. During 2021 focus on the industries and companies that prosper, need “extra hands”, and develop continuously through innovative thinking. Keep a look out on Social Media and various job portals or groups for new opportunities. The most important thing is, don’t be afraid to learn new skills.