CV Content

When formulating a CV for an employer, it’s important to arrange your CV Content and especially your work history,  experience and achievements in such a way that it becomes easy-to-read, yet is as informative as it can be.

It is important to elaborate only on job history which will benefit/aid your current job applications. Do not go into lengthy presentations on a previous career you pursued.
For each job you had in the past, you will use the headings: Engagements / Overview and Achievements.

Let’s look at this closer:

Work History
For each roll you had, give a brief summary on what the roll encompassed. Here you will list duties and info that will be similar to others in your job and industry. Keep it short and to the point and write it in a standard paragraph style.

Following your work history or engagements for a particular job, you will set yourself apart from your competitors with your achievements. It’s your call.

You also want to give a brief description of how you performed your duty and what sort of impact it had on the particular business. It is best to list, bullet your achievements than writing them in paragraph style.

This is the most important part of your CV, since this will set you apart from the other job applicants. Why should an employer choose you? Here you will list your unique selling points.

For example, if you were in charge of a project that was responsible for your company’s cost reduction, be sure to list it. E.g.:

“Whilst project leader, this project successfully concluded with an overall reduction of 25% in costs.”

This illustrates to the reader that your service may be beneficiary to the company; you can save them time, money, resources, etc. Don’t be shy about promoting yourself and emphasising your commercial awareness and ability to negotiate.

CV Content tips
When formulating the above, keep the following in mind:
For example, instead of listing this as your work summary: “I was a member of a 20-person team, wherein I managed 20 separate key accounts and dealt with up to 500 clients on a daily basis.”

It should be more fluid and succinct, e.g.:

1: Worked in a dedicated team of 20
2: Handled up to 500 clients per day
3: Successfully managed 20 key accounts

Another important factor is emphasising the level of responsibility you had. For example, if you worked the accounting department and handled a turnover of 25-million, you would list that in simple terms.

4: Accounting department handling a turnover of 25M

List certain aspects like the size of the business you worked for. If you were accountable for accounts, employees, money, etc, be sure to list it as above. Employers are overwhelmingly interested in candidates with ample experience and history. Whether you were part of a team or in charge of one, be sure to list it.

Quantify your experience
It’s also important to quantify your work experience.

You can quantify your experience on your CV by:

• Measuring accountabilities
• Listing your performance and expected outcomes
• Using proper terminology and wording in order to sell yourself at an optimum
• Cutting out clichés like “I’m the right man for this job” by adding supporting evidence

If you can have a former employer cite on your reference letter that you’re a good fit for the job you’re applying, that’s a huge plus. If you’re a graduate, you cannot rely on previous work history, so finding other references willing to say things like, “Strong team-building skills resulted in selection for team captain,” go a long way toward helping graduates stand out to employers and land the job.

Anything you can list that shows the reader that you value training and have a strong sense of self-confidence can go a long way. If you have proactively self-funded your MBA or something similar, be sure to list it.

Action Words
Further ways to enhance your CV has to do with “action words.” Among the many action words are “Recommended,” “Supervised,” “Achieved,” “Initiated,” “Implemented,” etc. You should start each new section with an action word. Action words best come into play in the Achievements section(s) of your CV.

Many clichés often get in the way of the reader. Through hundreds of applicants, large percentages are filled with the same words and phrases that an individual uses to promote his or herself for employment.

Instead of listing clichéd phrases, replace them with the evidence that you can do the job. Emphasise the fact that you’re the right person by providing examples and giving the expected outcome. Saying that “I can do this job” is one thing – giving cause-and-effect evidence on why you can do the job is another all together.

In conclusion
It’s easy and extremely doable to present your work history in a clear and concise way which will give the reader the necessary information on your work history, and supply them with the Achievements that will set you apart and ahead of the pack.

For more practical guidelines and examples on CV Content complete the form below.

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