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The Importance of a Good CV

Your CV is the first chance you get to make a good impression on a potential employer. A top-quality CV will considerably boost your chance of getting a face-to-face interview, so it is worth spending time and effort on the content and presentation. It will make all the difference in obtaining the position you want. You must therefore highlight your skills, expertise and value.

Make sure that you are concise and accurate. Your CV should not, generally, be longer than two pages, so make sure that you tailor it specifically to the job you are applying for and include the skills, qualifications and experience which are most suited to the job. An employer will want to find the following information in your CV:

Personal details – Include your name and address, a phone number, and your email address. Add your nationality, gender, ethnicity, date of birth, your health condition and expected salary.

Personal profile – Your career goals – It is good to include your enthusiasm about the field you work in and what motivates you about the industry. Use keywords and keep it brief and concise.

Key Skills – Include any skills you have learnt such as secretarial or IT skills. Explain what you think your personal skills are.

Employment history – Start with your current or last employer and work backwards. You should include the dates of employment, your job title, name of employer, nature of business, responsibilities, duties and achievements. Try not to leave gaps in your employment history; if you do, it is advisable to account for such times.

Education and qualifications – Write in chronological order a brief list of school, college and university qualifications, together with the grades you obtained. Then list any further qualifications you have obtained, together with the names of the awarding bodies. If you are currently studying for a qualification, mention it together with any results achieved so far.

References – There is no need to write the details of your referees on your CV. Simply state that they are available on request, but make sure that you know who your referees are and that you have asked their permission to use them. If you do write your referees on your CV make sure that you have the designation of that referee and contact number correct.

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Creative ways to make your resume shine

Analyze the Job Post’s Wording

An easy way to make sure your resume gets you in the door for an interview is to echo the language in the job post. Look for ways to use the words in the post; a resume reader — human or software — may be screening for them. (If there is no job post, check the company’s Web site — especially the About Us page and any corporate mission statements — for language you might adopt.)

If your resume says “supervise,” but the job post says “manage,” change it. If your last job title was “Social Media Ninja,” and you’re applying for a “Social Media Marketing Specialist” position, include the term “Marketing Specialist” in parentheses after your Ninja title (as long as you feel that this term could describe your past role).

Of course, don’t stretch the truth.

Weed Out Fibs

It’s all too easy for little fibs to make their way into a resume. Several years ago, you added an unearned certification to your resume, just to get your foot in the door at a new company. Or you claimed competence in a software program you figured you could learn on-the-fly.

Then, as the years went on, those temporary resume fibs somehow became set in stone. Now’s the time to chisel them out. Any resume lie — even a seemingly inconsequential one — can put your job search and future job security in jeopardy.

Replace lies with truths — or set about making the lies true. It could be as simple as putting the word “pursuing” before that imaginary degree on your resume.

Get Rid of the Objective Statement

Beginning with a resume objective statement (a phrase that starts with something like “Seeking a challenging position…”) is out. “Employers already know that your objective is to get a job, after all,” says Lauren Milligan, resume expert at ResuMayDay. Milligan suggests creating a career summary statement that “illustrates how you are better than other candidates for the job.” She adds, “Identify a few areas in your profession that you excel at…and that you really enjoy doing.”

Tell the hiring manager who you are and how you can solve her company’s problems, not what you want.

Get Rid of Redundancies

Don’t waste time telling hiring managers what they already know. Many people do this in their descriptions of past jobs. For instance, if your last job was as a copywriter for an online rug retailer, saying something like “wrote marketing copy for a wide variety of rugs” is unnecessary. Instead of taking up space with definitions no one needs, describe specific achievements. Did your work improve sales, get praise from management or improve SEO rankings? Use job highlights, not job descriptions.

Cut Unnecessary Resume ‘Stories’

Work Coach Cafe’s Ronnie Ann advises removing items not directly related to the story you’re telling about yourself and the job you’re applying for. “I have an abundantly varied job history — better than ‘job hopper,’ huh? — and remember back to resumes where I just wanted to make each job so full-bodied and rich that I was sure the employer would want to meet me,” she says. “But as interesting as we may be as human beings, employers just want to know if we’re right for their company — and specifically the job in question.”

For instance, if you’re both a professional accountant and a certified dog groomer, you might want to play down your dog-grooming experience when applying for accounting jobs.

Look for Ways to Use Exciting Language

Check your resume’s verbs, and use strong verbs to make your resume more vibrant. For instance, “responsible for daily bank deposits” (no verb) could easily be “oversaw daily bank deposits” (strong verb). And as you find each verb, look at its subject — is it you? If not, should it be? For instance, in “duties included writing press releases,” the subject is “duties.” It’d be much better to say something like “Wrote all company press releases.”

Thinking of your resume as a letter or a story (in which you’re the hero), or some other medium, is a great way to start making it fresher, more personal and more effective.

(content by monster.com)

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Why you should always keep your Resume updated

Many professionals only think to update their resumes when they’re on the job hunt. Resume writing can be tedious, and, after all, if you’re completely satisfied with your current role and have no intention of leaving any time soon, why should you spend the time to rewrite your resume?

Here are just a few important reasons why you should always be updating your resume, and why it can affect the way your future career develops.

Understand Your Career and Objectives Better
Most job seekers know that a resume acts as a career summary; only the most important parts of your skills and experience make it on to the page. With such a small amount of space to outline such a complex part of your life, it forces to you to really dig deep into what is most important to you.

Updating your resume regularly can help you refocus on what your career goals and expectations are. When you’re at one job for a few years, you can become comfortable and forget what areas of professional growth were important to you as a job seeker. Updating your resume regularly can expose the gaps in your skills and experience and reinvigorate your desire for self-improvement in your career.

Remember Major Projects
A great tip is to update your resume is after you’ve completed each major project you’ve worked on. It can be easy to forget the details of projects when you’re a few years removed from them—you may not remember the skills you learned or the obstacles you overcame.

Writing it down when it’s fresh in your mind can provide focus and accuracy that otherwise would elude you if you wait too long.

Practice Makes Perfect
Writing resumes doesn’t come naturally to everyone. There is a special resume etiquette you need to follow to ensure that you’re optimizing your writing space effectively, and knowing which keywords to use and which skills to promote can be tricky for even the most seasoned job seeker.

Updating your resume regularly can help you become a better self-promoter. Knowing how to sell yourself effectively is a key aspect to a successful job hunt. Since your resume is the first thing to cross the desk of an employer, it becomes critically important for it to be as fine-tuned as possible.

Be Ready for a Promotion
Even if you don’t plan on leaving your current company any time soon, promotions do arise, and you’ll need to submit a great resume if you hope to be a candidate for the role. It will look much better to your employer if you have a professional-looking resume ready to go rather than providing an old version—or something you hastily put together the night before.

Keep up with Trends
Just like certain wardrobe choices, parts of a resume can come in and out of style. Terms and skills can become obsolete, job titles can be updated and improved, and even entire sections of a resume can be considered irrelevant when they were crucial just ten years ago.

As an example, you may have a “Personal Details” section on your resume that outlines your experience as “secretary,” explains how you’re a “go-getter,” and goes into detail about your experience with Microsoft Word.

In today’s job market, a “Personal Details” section has gone entirely out of style, and it would be better to describe yourself as an administrative assistant instead of a secretary. The phrase “go-getter” is a buzzword that most employers ignore, and Microsoft Word has become an expected skill, so it’s better to use that space to outline a more relevant skillset.

In summary, updating your resume can help you stay on top of trends and stay focused on what’s important. (Posted by Kirsten Quarman)

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Why make use of a Recruitment company?

A recruitment agency helps job seekers find employment,while also helping a company find the perfect person for the job they are advertising.

Companies will hire a recruitment agency so that they do not have to sort through, possibly, hundreds of applications for a job. These days, there are more and more people applying for the same position and companies do not have the time to sift through that many applications. They will therefore hire a recruitment agency to take care of this part of the process and to whittle the number of candidates down to a manageable level. Business owners and executives do not have the time and, in many cases, do not have the skills to find the perfect candidates, so outsourcing to a recruitment agency may be the best solution.

There are a number of benefits to using recruitment agencies for employers and potential employees; below are just a few:

  • Using a recruitment agency saves time. The hiring process can be very time consuming, and especially the initial stages of sorting through applications. With so many people applying for the same position, it is understandable for a company to want to avoid this part of the process. Running a company is time consuming enough without having to take time away from this to sort through large numbers of CVs and application forms. Giving a recruitment agency the task of creating a shortlist of candidates for a position in a company is good business sense.
  • Some companies will use one recruitment agency to find the best person for their available position and will not advertise anywhere else. Failing to use recruitment agencies means that some candidates will not see these fantastic job advertisements and may miss the opportunity to work in a fantastic company with an excellent package.
  • Not only will recruitment agencies have the best jobs, they may also have access to the best candidates. Companies will benefit from the fact that a recruitment agency may have some of the best talent already registered on their books and it could mean finding the perfect candidate sooner rather than later.
    There are many levels to the hiring process, including sorting through applications, interviewing, screening, and reference checks. A recruitment agency can take care of all of these steps bar the actual interview. By passing these processes to the recruitment agency, a company can ensure that it does not have to worry about calling previous employers for references or checking up on qualifications, etc. These jobs can all be taken care of by the agency before the interview, and that will give the employer peace of mind that the person they are interviewing has already passed the necessary checks.
  • A recruitment agency will want to make sure that the person they recommend for the position is the best person for the job. They will therefore be meticulous in their vetting process and will only choose candidates that they feel will do the job to the best of their ability. This gives employers the security that the candidate should be a good fit for the company.
  • A good recruitment agency can be used repeatedly for available positions within a company. Once they have found a successful candidate for a company, the company will feel confident that they will be able to do so again and it will take the worry out of the process. It means that when new positions become available, the agency will have the details they need and can find the perfect candidate as soon as possible.
    Good recruitment agencies will work with both the client and the candidate and will try to help the candidate to make a good impression on the potential employer. This can be hugely beneficial to job seekers who are nervous about their interview.