Five steps to spring-clean your CV

Five Steps to spring-clean your CV

It’s the season for a good old clear out. So why not give your CV a polish, by following our five-step guide?

“The mistake many people make about their CV is to think of it as a static document. But it should be revised and reviewed on a regular basis and tailored to specific job opportunities. That way, it will always do the best possible justice to your skills, talents, and potential.”

      “The best CVs start with a statement that summarises a person’s strengths, experience and talents,”...  

That’s the view of Jody Collings, a senior consultant at Just Recruitment Group Ltd, who handles hundreds of CVs a month. She says the ones that stand out are concise, accurate and well written, creating just the right impression of a prospective candidate.

To ensure your CV is as sharp as a box of razor blades, here are Jody’s top tips to give it a spring clean.

1. Be ruthless

Okay, so your Mum and Dad are very proud of your silver medal in the school dance competition. But you’re a twenty-something professional, and it’s unlikely to help you stand out from the crowd when you go for your next sales job.

“Cut unnecessary detail from your CV,” advises Jody. “The average recruiter will have a large quantity of applications to work through. If yours seems verbose or self-indulgent, you’ll go to the bottom of the pile.”

Of course, what counts as “unnecessary” detail changes over time. Including a breakdown of GCSE results which is important if you’re a school leaver, but if you’ve been working for a decade or more, it’s probably sufficient just to say how many you have, and within what grade range. Your more recent educational and professional experience will trump what you did when you were 15.

2. Tighten the layout

You probably like to think that recruiters will focus on what you write in a CV, rather than how it looks. But the harsh truth is that visual presentation has a real impact.

“If you’re a busy person with a stack of CVs to review, you’ll be put off by clunky layouts that make the information hard to decipher,” says Jody. “It’s always worth making sure your CV is as legible as possible.”

Common mistakes to avoid are cutting sentences in half over pages, misaligning columns so they’re hard to read, or being inconsistent in the use of italics or bold typeface. As a general rule, keep your formatting as simple as possible – that minimises the risk of mistakes creeping in.

3. Be honest

Remember when you first started out on the job hunt and had to big up your limited experience? When you said that your role as a lifeguard included retail experience, because you were responsible for refilling the chocolate machine?

Now’s the time to go over your CV and correct those half-truths. Because if there’s one thing a recruiter can spot a mile away, it’s needless hyperbole. And even if you’re a great candidate, it creates an impression of someone who’s trying too hard – never a good look when you’re going for a new job.

4. Update your summary statement

“The best CVs start with a statement that summarises a person’s strengths, experience and talents,” says Jody. “Naturally, this changes over time, and you may want to play up different attributes depending on the job you’re applying for.

“My advice is to review this statement each time you apply for a job, and perhaps keep a file of alternative versions somewhere on your computer. Then you can cut, paste and edit the one that seems most appropriate, helping you create maximum impact with your prospective employer.”

5. Enjoy your achievements

Reading your CV can be a curiously pleasurable experience. It’s a chance to remind yourself of your achievements and celebrate life’s successes. This can be a helpful way to build your confidence before applying for jobs. So, enjoy it, and remember to reference the highlights in an interview situation.

“A CV should be an honest appraisal of what you can offer a prospective employer,” says Jody. “But it is a sales tool, too. So, if you don’t finish reading it with a renewed feeling of pride and self-belief, you probably need to give it a bit more work.”

 

Published: 24 March 2021
© Just Recruitment Group Ltd 2021

If you are actively seeking for a new job search here
You may also like to read: What are the most common spelling mistakes on CVs?

Jobs currently available

New job
Care Coordinator
Sector: Healthcare
Location: Colchester
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: BUC-CC
About the role

Back Up Care is recruiting for a Care Coordinator for their Colchester Office to work on the busy Healthcare desk.

Previous experience in scheduling care and support staff would be preferred and a healthcare background is an advantage. You will be extremely confident and well-presented and be able to use your own initiative.

This position will involve working alongside the Office Manager, supporting them with the day to day running of the desk.

The role will include:

  • Registration interviews with potential new candidates, and completion of all necessary compliance documents for successful candidates
  • Booking clients rotas to relevant active care staff, and ensuring that all care staff availability is booked to full potential
  • Service calls to clients that are using service meetings to ensure current clients’ needs are being met by Back Up Care
  • Telephone calls to prospect clients
  • Email and Mailers sent to prospect clients
  • Source leads for possible new business
  • Sales calls to obtain new business
  • Sales meetings to obtain new business
  • Ensure specialist software is updated with carer and client information and all bookings are entered onto the system
  • General administration duties
  • On-call rota duties

This requires you to work at an extremely fast pace, placing candidates into both temporary and permanent placements to match their qualifications, skills and experience.

There is a large amount of telephone calls liaison with candidates and clients, therefore excellent clear communicational skills are a must and excellent interpersonal skills are essential.

Other essential skills are:

  • An ability to work as part of a team and as a lone worker
  • A proven ability of effective time management and organisational skills
  • Excellent administrational skills are vital and attention to detail ensuring all candidates are compliant prior to assignment
  • Due to the requirements of the role, a driving licence and access to a vehicle for work purposes is essential

Holiday entitlement:

28 days holiday including public holidays, increasing to 33 days after 2-year service.

If you wish to apply for this role, please forward your CV to emma.brown@back-upcare.co.uk

Read more
New job
QA Manager
Sector: Engineering and Manufacturing
Salary: Discussed on application
Location: Saffron Walden
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 910873
About the role

Our client is seeking an experienced Quality Assurance Manager to join them on a permanent, full-time basis. This opportunity offers stability, longevity and professional development.

Reporting directly to the MD, the Quality Assurance Manager will be responsible for:

  • Maintaining and improving the Company's Quality Management System and ensure internal compliance
  • Working with all departments to ensure their procedures are being followed and to improve their internal and cross-functional processes and procedures
  • Ensure that the quality of current and newly introduced products is compliant and traceable
  • Coordinate Quality activities with all over departments
  • Develop and improve quality relationships with all customers of the Company
  • Responsible for all Quality activities and personnel in the Quality Department for the Company
  • Provide strong leadership in the day-to-day operations of the Quality department and mentor the members of the team
  • Establish performance goals for all departmental employees and monitor performance on a continual basis
  • Oversee all hiring, appraisal, training and discipline of Quality personnel
  • Member of the Company's Management team
  • Produce the Quality element of the company's annual Budget
  • Formulate the departmental strategy aligned to the overall Company strategy
  • Embed a Continuous Improvement culture within the Quality Dept and contribute to the Continuous Improvement programme across the site

Requirements:

  • HND or equivalent qualification in Engineering or a related technical field required
  • Minimum 5 years experience in a Manufacturing environment
  • Ability to articulate (verbally and in writing), defend and negotiate Quality expectations with internal and external customers at all levels of management
  • Good interpersonal skills with the ability to guide and educate/train at all levels
Read more
New job
Customer Service Administrator
Sector: Customer Service
Salary: £22,000 per annum
Location: Halstead
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 910871
About the role

Just Recruitment is delighted to be supporting a well-regarded organisation at the forefront of its sector that is looking to add a Customer Service Administrator to its team, due to growth – based on the outskirts of Halstead.

The main purpose of the role is to service current and prospective customers by receiving and processing orders, enquiries and general information in a timely and courteous manner.

Key tasks include:

  • Answering incoming calls, giving product information, lead times, dealing with general enquiries and queries, redirecting calls to relevant departments
  • Raising and inputting orders and proforma invoices
  • Raising quotations
  • Amending orders, as required
  • Scanning documentation
  • Liaising with Areas Sales Managers and responding to their requests
  • Arranging couriers and/or carriers as required
  • Any general office associated duties

Key requirements for the role:

  • Excellent computer skills
  • Good eye for detail
  • The ability to work well under pressure
  • Courteous

Previous experience requirements:

  • Previous Customer Service Administrative experience gained within an office environment
  • Excellent telephone manner with the ability to communicate at all levels
  • High level of attention to detail and accuracy
  • Good working knowledge of Microsoft Office and experience of in-house systems
  • Ability to multi-task and prioritise own workload
  • Exceptional communication skills, both written and verbal
  • Understanding of the importance of data protection and adherence to the process

Offering free parking and an excellent working environment, this is a great opportunity to join a growing team.

Working Monday to Friday 37.5 hours per week - offering a competitive salary and company benefits.

Read more
New job
Production Operative
Sector: Engineering and Manufacturing
Salary: £8.91 per hour
Location: Needham Market
Role: Full Time
Contract: Temporary
Job ref: 910811
About the role

Want to work in a safe, clean environment?
And have the possibility of ongoing work?

Just Recruitment is recruiting for a Temporary Production Operative to be based in Needham Market.

Duties include:

  • Ensure all final and completed products are packed to the customer specifications                               
  • Informing Line Leaders of defects found in the products
  • Keep machines supplied with packing materials and labels
  • Assist the Line Leaders with handovers and changeovers
  • Responsible for general cleanliness of the production area and removal of production and general waste
  • Check products on the line for quality and defects
  • Basic production duties carried out in a fast-paced environment

Working hours:

8.30am - 5.00pm Monday to Friday

Read more
New job
Logistics Coordinator
Sector: Transport, Logistics and Shipping
Salary: £24,000 per annum
Location: Ipswich
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 910869
About the role

Just Recruitment is delighted to be supporting, a well-regarded, family-run business on the outskirts of Ipswich.

You will be responsible for assisting with the loads out operation of the business by ensuring that the process from collection to arrival at the final destination is fully supported by the relevant goods in haulage documentation.

You will also be supporting the sales function of the business by dealing with customer queries in terms of both sales and operations as well as assisting with various ad-hoc marketing campaigns. This is a very varied role and requires flexibility, commitment and a substantial desire to learn and grow with the flourishing business.

Duties will include:

  • Process orders and oversees the order to completion of paperwork
  • Facilitate the shipping of products from one destination to another
  • Arrange transportation with outside hauliers
  • Receive paperwork from the Weighbridge department and check and complete the paperwork within the allocated time allowed
  • Answer calls and emails relating to customer queries and log them on the CRM system and resolve any outstanding issues raised
  • Keep CRM records up-to-date
  • Work with the sales and operations team to ensure that high customer service levels are achieved and delivered to all customers you are responsible for at all times

Skills required:

  • Good Microsoft skills including Word, Outlook & Excel
  • Ability to work proactively on an independent basis as well as be a good team player
  • You will have the interpersonal skills necessary to develop and sustain effective relationships with team members of other departments and with all customers
  • Good attention to detail and analytical skills
Read more