It is often stated that recruiters only spend around six seconds on average glancing at a CV prior to making a decision.
With hundreds, and at times thousands, of similar job candidates available for one particular post, recruiters do actually review large amounts of CVs. What that means is that they need to have a way to quickly yet effectively filter them.
Of course shortlisting or hiring decisions are not made in six seconds. The initial review revolves around finding individuals who are worthy of a more in-depth and serious consideration. This is the highest and first level of the overall filtering process.
You should be familiar already with the basics of CVs: keep it brief (usually less than two pages), use bullet points and sub-headings, and proofread it a number of times to eliminate any grammar or spelling errors.
What about your Curriculum Vitae content? If you only have a few seconds worth of someone’s attention, what type of information should you be making as accessible and clear as possible to ensure you receive further consideration?
The following are the top five things that your CV should clearly indicate.
1. Recent experience
What you are currently doing is the most important aspect of your CV. This is where you should seriously spend some time detailing your accomplishments, key skills and responsibilities.
This is usually the first place that recruiters look to see whether you are working in a relevant field or not, maybe ready for a new position (you might need to provide an additional explanation if you’ve only been at your new job for three months) and if you are working at a company that the recruiter is familiar with.
This final point is critical. Unless you work for well-known brand or FTSE100 company, then you should include a one-sentence summary of the company you work for and provide a link to their website.
That is especially useful in certain fast moving sectors like the London tech industry where great companies crop up so frequently that it isn’t always possible to stay current on all of them. Stating what your company does in your CV can help you avoid being passed over.