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Writing a Curriculum Vitae (CV) 2/

Posted by | 7 January, 2015 | Career Advice

Tips on Writing a Job Winning CV / Resume

“Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.” – Oscar Wilde

On you can add a CV to your account through the ‘My Dashboard’ area. Just click on the tab ‘Resumes’ where you will see a several blank fields the first of which is ‘Resume Title’. This one field may be the most important section you will fill out. (Note the words ‘CV’ and resume mean the same thing and are used interchangeably on

If you read the book ‘Blink’ by Malcom Gladwell you’ll learn everybody makes instant judgements within the ‘blink of an eye’ of meeting someone or seeing some event. Everyone does it including the human resources manager of a large company or hotel. He/she will receive hundreds of CVs every week or month and doesn’t have the time to dig deep into your CV to find the ‘real you’. Remember the priority of a CV is get an interview. This is where it starts, this is the first point the HRD will read – it must be professional and memorable enough to entice the HRD to want to know more about you and most importantly, to keep reading.

With that in mind here are a few tips:

    1. Keep the title short, maximum 34 characters, including spaces. 34 Characters is the maximum number of characters that will fit on the first line. When your CV is public this title will display in very large bold font (letters). A long title looks overwhelming and shows a lack of focus; less is more here – keep to your title to just one line.

    2. Know industry standard job titles or review job titles on listings to get ideas.

    3. When using only 34 characters be short, clear and focused. An effective title includes the title or type of a job you are seeking and your strongest qualification, i.e. degree, past experience or unique skill.

    4. Do not put your name in the title. Your name automatically appears under the title.

    5. Abbreviations can be used but not sms shorthand slang text. Remember the person looking at this may not understand current sms slang jargon.

    6. Be serious and professional. Unless you’re applying for a job as an entertainer, do not try to be funny or cute. For example do not write “Best waiter on Bali NOW AVAILABLE’. Whilst eye catching we would not read further if we received it.

A few examples to get you started:

Administrative Assistant:

    Before: Looking for Junior Secretary Job
    After: Secretary Fluent English, MS Office Exp

Information Technology:

    Before: Exp Freelance Website Programmer
    After: Web Programmer 8yrs exp php, linux

Hotel Cost Controller:

    Before Experienced Accountant SD Degree
    After: Finance/Acct SD MYOB cost control

New Graduate Travel School:

    Before: CV of Wayan Nyoman Tour Travel Grad
    After: 2014 STP Grad 3.4 speak 3 languages

You get the point… Include your desired position and skills/experience. Take your time to get this right. After this, your CV must demonstrate your ability to fill the company’s vacant position. Btw, don’ worry if you don’t get it right the first time you can edit this as many times as you want.

Once you finish titling your resume page there are four additional fields to consider, namely: skills, specialities, spoken languages, groups and associations.

The next field is for Resume Summary. This is where you write your goals, strengths and accomplishments. It is here is where you can give prospective employers a better idea of who you are and how you may be able to contribute to their company but remember you are writing this to get an interview. Again, be direct and to the point explaining how your skills will contribute to the company’s success. Keep in mind that the reason the company is hiring is because it has a need or a perceived problem. The company is looking for someone to solve that problem, not create another one.

After your summary you will be given the choice of job category. This will be used to send you job alerts about companies that have vacancies in your chosen category. It can also be used by companies to review CVs that match the category they have a vacancy. Be selective and truthful, it will not benefit a hotel food and beverage professional to add their resume to the accounting and finance category. If we discover abuses we will terminate the account. That said however it may be beneficial for a finance professional to have a resume tailored specifically for position in finance and a second CV tailored for a position in accounting.

If you wish you may add a passport size photo of yourself. Again be truthful, the photo should be recent, say no more than one year old and conservative – not a selfie with a provocative pose. With a digital camera it is not difficult to keep this updated. The risk you have when your photo is several years old or you have a drastically different hairstyle is if you do succeed in obtaining an interview and your photo is much different it immediately raises questions in the employers mind about your character, judgement and/or abilities. (Remember, Blink).

Finally you may opt to advise employers of your desired salary. Be careful and realistic. Whilst including your expected salary can save everyone a lot of time, i.e. there is no need for a small company to call you for an interview if your expected salary is too much for their budget and you do not want to interview for a job where the salary is unacceptable. However the flip side is that the higher your requested salary the better and more focused your CV needs to be: Expectations are Progressive (more on that in another blog post).

On to part three, the CV itself…

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