How to write a CV

Your CV is your opportunity to present your skills and experience for the role you’re applying.

At the very least, a strong CV should help promote you and secure interviews. Use the following guidelines below to write and submit your CV.

What information should a CV include?

A good CV should include information under the headings below. The order in which you present these can be varied slightly and you should be willing to tailor your CV to promote your suitability for any particular application, according to the description/specifications of the particular job.

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Personal details

 

  • Set out your contact details clearly and visibly (postal and e-mail addresses and phone number/s).
  • Do use these at the beginning of the CV but avoid superfluous details (such as religious affiliation, children's names and so on).
  • Do include a personal statement.
  • Don't state your date of birth or marital status if you do not wish to, this is not mandatory.
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Education and qualifications

 

  • Do include the names of institutions you studied at and the dates you attended them, in reverse chronological order (i.e. most recent first, university before school results).
  • Do state the grade you attained for your degree and the pass rate for any professional qualification/s taken (e.g. ACA - First time passes.)
  • Do ensure this is clear and concise.
  • Don't state every subject studied at GCSE or A Level stage unless you feel they are relevant to the role you are applying for.
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Work experience

 

  • Do place each position you have held in reverse chronological order (i.e. most recent first) on your CV. Make sure there are no unexplained gaps.
  • Do list all relevant responsibilities, skills, projects and achievements against each role.
  • Do use the correct tense for work experience; i.e. list responsibilities in your current role in the present tense (e.g. compiling monthly reports) but in the past tense for previous roles (e.g. compiled monthly reports).
  • Do emphasise more recent jobs; provide more information on more recent jobs.
  • Do use a bullet point format and make each point clear and concise.
  • Don't write your work experience in paragraphs.
  • Don't include excessive detail that is not directly relevant to your application.
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Other

 

  • Do include IT computer skills and genuine foreign language skills.
  • Do include any other recent training/development that is relevant to the role to which you have applied.
  • Do include hobbies and interest, but keep this section short.
  • Do state that references are 'available on request'.

CV hint and tips:

  • Remember, your CV is essentially marketing you. Bear this in mind when choosing the information you include.
  • It should be clear, concise and easy to read. Explain any gaps in career history. Double-check your details. Avoid falsehoods and inaccuracies.
  • Double check the entire CV carefully for grammatical errors and spelling mistakes and to ensure that each point makes sense.
  • Ask a neutral person to review the whole document before you send it.
  • Also bear in mind that potential employers will use the details you have provided to form some interview questions.
  • There is no need to include your reasons for leaving each job on your CV but be prepared to answer these questions in your interview.
  • Your CV should ideally cover no more than two pages and never more than three.
  • Current salary details should not be included.

Pre Employment Screening

Once you accept an offer, our Pre Employment Screening Team will verify the employment history and relevant professional qualifications you outlined on your application/CV. This makes it absolutely essential that all of the information you provide is accurate at the point of application and post offer as it will be checked rigorously (although active checks won't be made against social networking sites).

Also, if you are joining a business area with Government and public sector clients, further checks will be carried out in line with the Government’s Baseline Personnel Security Standard (BPSS), including a criminal record check and proof of residence.