Personnel & Industrial Relations
Human Resource Management

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The word Curriculum Vitae(LATIN WORD) literally translated means the story of your life. The words Curriculum Vitae are usually abbreviated to CV or C.V. and you will sometimes see it incorrectly written in lower case as c.v. or cv. The possessive form of Curriculum Vitae / CV should be written as Curriculum Vitae's or C.V.'s or CVs, but not as c.v.'s or cv's.

These days employers often receive a lot of CVs for each advertised position - jobs advertised in national papers can often attract hundreds of applicants. So your CV has to be just that little bit special to stand out if you want to obtain interviews. The good news (for you) is that most people do not know how to write a CV and only spend a short time preparing a CV. Writing professional CVs is a skill, which these people have not learnt.

Of course your CV can continue to work in your favour even after it has obtained an interview for you. It can help you at an interview by carefully focusing the interviewer's mind on your good points and on your achievements. Once you have left the interview it will continue to work in your favour as the interviewer will probably reread it before making a decision, either on who should be invited to the second interview stage or who the job should be offered to.

General CV tips

1. These days you can write your CV in the first person (i.e. I have) or the third person (i.e. he/she has). However, you do not need to use 'I', 'he' or 'she' in a CV because its use is implied.
2. Do mention things you are good at, but do not go over the top. You can oversell yourself.
3. Don't mention things that you are bad at or say negative things about yourself in your CV.
4. Make sure that the CV you write conjures up the right image of you and your skills, capabilities and achievements. If you do not match the picture you have painted with your CV at the interview, then your application will not be taken further.
5. Be careful when you use abbreviations - they can be misunderstood.
6. If you are not happy with your CV or you only seem to get rejection letters then please get a professional CV writing service to write it for you. Yes, you will have to pay for it. But, it could save you a lot of time.
7. Re-read your CV to ensure that there are no grammatical errors and the sentence structure is correct.
8. Make sure the style of the CV remains consistent throughout. Font, Font style and size should remain the same.
9. The spacing should be paid heed to, to make sure the CV makes up for a plain and simple reading.
10. Avoid using stylistic fonts that looks jarring to the eyes.

Tips for producing a better CV

Think of your CV as your shop window - it must effectively display your experience, skills and qualities in a very short period of time. The following tips will help you produce a CV that does just that.

1. Keep it short and clear
Before you start, choose the right structure for your CV. The most important information, such as your key skills and recent experience, needs to be near the top, where it can be seen straightaway. Sections you usually need to include are your Profile, Achievements, Experience, Special Skills (languages / computers), Education, Training, and (if you wish) Interests. Your CV should normally be two pages in length (unless you have a very long career or you are a contractor or the recruiter asks for a longer CV). If you haven't caught the recruiter's interest by page two then they probably won't read any further pages anyway.

2. Make it look good
Clear, attractive presentation is also important if your CV is to stand out. Ensure that it's uncluttered, with key points easy to spot. Use bullet points and keep the sentences relatively short. Plenty of 'white space' around the borders and between each section keeps the document easier on the eye.

3. Most recent first
Put your employment history in date order, starting with the most recent first. Avoid leaving any gaps, so if you've had time out for some reason, do mention this. Don't go into detail about positions you held over 10 years ago. Include details of holiday or temporary work only if it's relevant to the job you're applying for.

4. Include many facts
List your job duties beneath each position. List your achievements, responsibilities and results. Talk about results - what difference did your presence make? Use numbers for achievements wherever possible, e.g. "Boosted sales by 20% in first year". And always write in a slightly formal manner and never use the word "I" - e.g. "Supervised the team" rather than "I supervised the team". Use the past tense for previous jobs and the present tense for your current job.

5. Not too many lists
Include specific skills, such as languages, administrative or computing skills, in a separate section in your CV. Don't relist them for every job you've used them in. This is particularly so for IT work - lists of tools and packages make dull reading and won't make you stand out from other people with the same abilities.

6. Breathe some life into it
Remember the employer wants a sense of the kind of person you are, as well as what you can do. Are you punctual, conscientious, or motivated? Do you rise to a challenge? With each point you write, ask yourself "What does this say about me?"

7. Be accurate
Always check for errors. Run a spelling and grammar check and ask someone else to read it for you. Read it aloud to the dog. The employer isn't going to believe you're a good communicator if your CV is full of mistakes.

8. Adapt it
You don't have to use the same CV every time. You can have two or three versions, each for a different kind of job. Or you can tailor your CV to suit the job you're applying for. It isn't a case of one size fits all.

9. Send a covering letter
Unless the advert tells you not to, always send a covering letter. This should highlight the two or three areas of experience from your CV that are most relevant to the advertised job. Never send your CV out on its own.

10. Be truthful
Although you obviously want to present yourself well, don't go too far and embellish the truth. It can easily backfire on you.

11. Enclose a Covering letter
When sending in a CV or job application form, you must include a covering letter. The purpose of the letter is to make sure that the CV arrives on the desk of the correct person. Also to say why you want that particular job with that particular employer and to draw attention to one or two key points in the CV which you feel make you suited to that particular job with that particular employer.
It should clearly say what job you are interested in. If in case you are sending a 'speculative' CV hoping that they may have work for you, explain what sort of work you are interested in like saying, 'I believe my skills equip me to work in the product development department/accounts office/whatever'. When sending a speculative CV, you may try telephoning later to push your enquiry further.

While drafting your covering letter keep these following points in mind:
• Start your letter with an underline heading giving the job title you are interested in. (If you saw the job advertised, say where you saw it.)
• The letter should only be on one side of A4 paper. It must be polite and easy to read.
• Mention when you are available for an interview. Ending your letter with a request for specific extra information may give a positive response.

By Nilesh Shah
Laurent & Benon Management Consultants Ltd, a public limited company with its corporate office Gurgaon with multiple branches. We as an organization strive to offer the right Human Resource Solutions at the right time and enable our clients to enhance the net worth of their human resource capital.

For further information Please visit us at http://www.laurentandbenon.co.in/

laurentandbenon, Excellent guide and implementing material. Wonder very few replies/views. Came very handy for me. Keep it up, exiafser
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