A Curriculum Vitae is your own way of communicating your abilities, experiences, qualifications and skills in order to secure a job you desire.
Writing your CV requires conscious effort. Employers have also identified some flaws that reduce the chances of job seekers getting call backs simply because they do not know or are careless about the presentation of their CV.
For the purpose of this writing, we would list and discuss ten mistakes applicants must refrain from in order to scale through job interviews and get the appointment afterwards:
No employer has all the time in the world to check through your CV; they scan through your CV within a minute or less. So, do not fill it with needless information that would only jeopardize your chances. Data like religion, height, weight, etc. should be excluded.
Hiding significant information:
What else does your CV do if not to sell your personality vis-à-vis the job you aspire to and this should be communicated right away to your prospective employer in your CV. You can use highlights or bullet points to emphasize your strong areas and important information.
On no condition should you use words or phrases like ‘several’, ‘a few’, ‘many’ in your CV, which are not definite enough. They can only make your CV unclear and hence, become unacceptable to your interviewer. Especially when you are meant to state the years of work experience, mention exactly the number of years, designation or role, and nothing more. Perhaps, you made significant sales in your previous employment, state precisely the figure or amount for your interviewer to know that you are sure of your responses, and that you are not faking it.
Wide or close gaps between employment dates:
The onus lies on you to explain the reasons you were out of employment for such a long time, maybe due to a professional course, travel, or any other necessities, etc. In case it is a close gap in date, which some employers frown at, you should let them know the reason too. You may offer that the close dates or short stay in an employment is occasioned by a job opportunity in your professional field or interest, necessitating the shift, etc.
Being economical with the truth:
Know that your CV is representative of your worth. However, do not include a qualification and work title that you know nothing about. Saying exactly what you are or have (qualities, previous salary, grade level, skills, etc.) presents you as an honest person and that could be just what the interviewer or employer needs to approve you as the best fit for the job.
Too lengthy expressions:
Describe yourself or ability in the shortest possible way because it will help you keep your employer interested in going through your CV. Adopting a short but precise CV helps keep your material to a maximum of two pages, which is acceptable for the so busy employers who have tons of other stuff to attend to.
Heavy graphics design:
Focus on the most important things, which are your experience, qualification and skills. Employers are interested in what you have got to offer other than mundane add-ons (though they may cite it in the course of interview). Let your CV be typed in a screen friendly font like Ariel, Times New Roman, etc. and with a size not exceeding 10 or 12 for the body text, while the heading and subheading can take a slightly larger size.
A clueless introduction:
Instead of a vague introduction, we recommend a direct expression of your ability or experience with words like “A sales representative with 10 years of work experience in the financial sector”. This is acceptable than saying ‘results-oriented, team player, achiever,’ etc. Mind you, the interviewer’s first port of call might be your introduction and if you can get the required attention there, you will be good for it.
Except it is called for, do not, for any reason, list a number of referees, which takes up a lot of space in your CV. Better state that ‘References will be presented on request’. Preferably too, list your references on another sheet of paper for evaluation by the employer.
This is termed a credibility killer by some people. Do not ruin your chances of getting a job by any error in grammar, spelling, or expression. Therefore, make sure you check and cross check your CV for errors and get someone else to do this for you too.