Why I’m throwing away your CV

receive in the region of 1-2 CV’s a day via email and anywhere from 5-10 by hand to my office. How, when you receive as many as 240 CV’s a month, are you supposed to sort out the ones worth looking at and the ones that don’t fit any of your criteria?

The answer, I’m afraid, is a harsh one.

1.When I receive a CV by email, if you have not put any text in the email and just attached your CV, I will delete it immediately. In my mind if you cannot be bothered to write an introduction sentence or two then I cannot be bothered to look at your CV.

2.If you have sent your CV to multiple people in one email either by bcc or worse showing everyone else’s email, I will feel like you have not taken the time to research and review the company or a potential role you may be able to fill. Your email will also be deleted.

3.Not necessarily an immediate deletion of your email but please, please, please send your CV email in PDF format. Word, Pages, Notepad are messy and may look different on my computer/device than they do when you typed it at home. If you want me to see the CV that you have written in the format you have written in, convert it to PDF.

4.How many pages is too many pages? 5? 3? 2? In my opinion, anything over 1 page is just you trying to fill out space and makes it much harder for me to see a summary of your experience. Even the most accomplished person can fit their achievements and experience on to one page. If I need any more information, I will ask you.

5.This one may be specific to me, but if you send me a CV written in comic sans font, I will immediately delete it and be in a bad mood for the rest of the day.

6.What happened to cover letters? I remember not too long ago whenever I had a CV I would get a nicely presented cover letter with a short introduction and a sentence or two showing me that you understood the company you were applying too and why you felt you would work well there. As an example “after researching your company online I feel that my Qualifications in X and X years’ experience in X field would make me an ideal candidate to work at your company”. Short, simple, and lets me know that you have looked into the company at least a little bit rather than just throwing everything against the wall to see what sticks. This can also be your introduction in an email with your CV attached.

7.If you’re dropping your CV off by hand, addressed envelops are your best friend. If you put a CV in a blank envelope or one with just the company name (or worse, only “CV” written on the front) the person at reception will have most likely received several that day and not pay yours any attention. Putting someone’s name, or at least job title, will help your chances in the CV being seen by the right person. Also remember that the person you are sending the CV to may have to pass that CV onto other people so keep in mind that it is likely not just one person that has to be impressed.

8.I really do not need to see copies of your qualifications or primary school achievements (yes, I’ve received these before), at least until you’ve been offered the job! Again, keep it brief and keep it relevant, putting all of your achievements in with your CV makes you seem desperate and they will most likely be thrown away anyway.

I know it is a pain to find a job, competition is always tough and a lot of the time you can feel discouraged, but you must try and remain positive and confident. Making a few tweaks to the way you introduce yourself to a company can make a big difference and help you stand out amongst the crowd. There are loads of resources online to help you write your CV, take advantage of them!

This may have turned into a rant rather than advice but I hope it helps!

TC

PS. Seriously, no comic sans, ever, in anything...

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