Avoiding these CV mistakes could make the difference between being invited for an interview or missing out on a golden opportunity to get hired. When applying for a job that you are qualified for, ensure you maximise your chances by sending in a well-written CV and cover letter to help the hiring manager make that decision of including your CV in the final shortlist.
Think about your job application as a ‘popularity contest.’ The hiring manager does not know you personally and the only chance you have at getting ‘hired’ is by standing out as a prime candidate among several others who applied for the same job you applied for.
Our CV and recruitment professionals have listed the top CV mistakes you should avoid this year. Let us take a look.
Task-oriented language focuses on assigned task as a means to gauge your performance at an organisation or a job. This language does not highlight your initiatives, achievements and innovation on the job. Hiring managers and employers are interested in tasks you have experience working on but they are more in your achievements. Hence, your use of achievement-oriented language would do a better job of selling your skills and your capacity to own the advertised vacancy better.
Our recruitment professionals pointed out that many job seekers still highlight their personal details as the first information on their CV. Details like sex, religion, state of origin, date of birth (in most cases) are not of utmost importance to land you an interview opportunity. Rather, focus on key details like your skills, work experience, education or other training, which would help you show you can own the role they are hiring for.
First Person Language
Writing your CV in a first-person narrative or language helps you tell your story from the personal perspective of ‘I’ or ‘We.’ Some simple examples are:
- “I achieved a 30% revenue increase by surpassing my sales target for 2018.”
- “We successfully redesigned and launched the mobile version of the company’s website.”
The first person narrative as a storytelling technique for your CV is beneficial in many ways. For instance, it makes your CV believable, creates a clear perspective and it is easier to read and understand.
One golden rule is to avoid writing in the second or third-person language.
If your referees have not been specifically requested yet, do not include them on your CV. Our recruiters advise that you should always inform your referees about including them on your CV. This goes a long way in keeping them informed about the types of jobs you are applying for. In situations where they are contacted, they are not caught unawares. Not everyone likes getting caught off guard.
Hobbies and Interests
If your various hobbies or interests do not align with the job, simply do not add them to your CV It is as simple as that. Another set of hobbies and interests that you should take off your CV if they are already there are those that are broadly categorised as being entrepreneurial. The last thing you want is for the hiring manager to assume that if you eventually get the job, your hobbies and interests are likely to hinder your performance.
If you have been out of a job for a certain period of time, you don’t have to tell lies or makeup work experiences. It is better to use employment years rather than months in such cases to avoid being caught lying. If you still happen to have gaps, be ready to explain why they are there truthfully.
Final Thoughts on CV Mistakes
It has been said time and time again that your CV remains one of the most important tools in finding the job you desire. You have to keep it as well written as you possibly can. Go through your CV over and over again. Ensure it captures the right keywords and keep out the jargons. Your CV is your unique identity and should not be rushed.
Writing a CV is not an easy exercise. The fact that CV writing professionals make it look simple does not mean it is easy. You still need the services of a CV writing expert to ensure your CV is capable of adequately representing you in your absence and is good enough to get you invited to a job interview.