Over the next few weeks we will be bring you articles by Paul Mullan from Measurability.ie. Measurability offers career coaching to individuals looking to change careers as well as companies looking to train their staff for better things. If you have a question you can either leave it here or send Paul an email at email@example.com.
Why most CV’s fail.
The internet is saturated with websites full of advice on CV design and content and everyone seems to be an expert in this area including family and friends. In principle much of this information and advice may be relevant to help create a killer CV and sell yourself effectively but the key issue that seems to be overlooked time and time again is that your CV is not actually about you. Think I’m mad – read on.
Is a CV really about you?
Yes your CV will contain information about you under the headings of personal details, value statements, education & training, work history and hobbies but exactly what information should be determined by the job specification and the employer requirements and not by what you want to write. When you understand and embrace this point your CV to interview ratio will increase dramatically.
See yourself as a product or service.
Another way to consider this is to imagine you are a product or service that you are trying to sell to a potential customer. Any good salesperson will tell you that the initial focus in any sale is to identify the needs of the customer. The client has posted a job specification telling you their needs so this has already made your job easier. Most jobseekers choose to ignore this valuable information and instead write everything they can about themselves thus offering information that is irrelevant to the potential employer. These CV’s lack focus or more importantly client focus. If this is what you are doing your sales pitch is providing information on features of your product or service that doesn’t interest the client.
Many job seekers have one CV which they submit to every interesting job. If a salesperson offered the same sales pitch to every client they would not be very successful. Your CV should be altered for every position you apply for because in reality every client has different needs. This can range from a few tweaks to your CV to a major overhaul if for example you are applying for totally different skill-sets or roles.
30 seconds to make an impact.
Most jobseekers have heard that many employers will make a decision within the first few minutes of an interview. Well most employers will make a decision to call you for interview within the first 30 seconds of reading your CV. It is important to tell a client early in your CV that you can solve their problems. Make an immediate impact and secure the chance to secure an interview to hammer home why you are the right person for the job.
Article by Paul Mullan of Measurability.ie. Measurability offers Career Coaching to individuals (Career Direction, CV Design & Interview Coaching) and Assessment Solutions for businesses to improve their recruitment decisions.