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HomeCareerRE: TO THE JOB SEEKER {Part 1}- THE CV


After graduating from the university, the next line of order is to get a job. There are however some important things to do and the first point of call is the CV. The Curriculum Vitae (CV) is derived from Latin which means course of life. It is a document that contains information about an applicant such as educational qualification, referees etc. There has however been a debate between CV and Resumè. Dont get it twisted; they both mean the same thing. CV is British while Resumè is used by Americans.
The outlook of a CV says alot about a person. You need to make the person reading your CV get interested in looking past the first page because In one job vacancy, there can be 200+ applicants and those on the selection committee may not be patient to read everyone’s CV which is why you need to spice up your CV. Here are a few things to remember; Choose clear and legible fonts. One that does not stress the person reading your CV. Next, Go for one of the standard CV typefaces: Arial, Tahoma, or Helvetica if you prefer sans-serif fonts, and Times New Roman or Bookman Old Style if serif fonts are your usual pick. Many of us did not type our final year projects so all of these will be strange to us; its only those who are computer inclined that can identify with these without thinking for too long. It is important for those who are not computer smart to meet someone who is to help them with these technicalities because they contribute in making the CV one worth reading. Next, Use 11 to 12 font size and single spacing. For your name and section titles. You can also pick 14 to 16 font size. These are large font sizes that are legible to read. Be consistent with your CV layout;Make sure your CV headings are uniform—make them larger and in bold but go easy on italics and underlining.
Stick to a single dates format on your CV: for example 11-2017, or November 2017. Do not use them interchangeably; it will show that you are not organized. Your CV speaks when you are mute. When it speaks, make sure its loud.
There are other things that are mandatory and should be in your CV. They include
1.Contact details – Include your home address, mobile number and email address. Unless you’re applying for an acting or modelling job you don’t need to include a photograph.
2. Profile/ Personal Information – they include your name, date of birth, sex, nationality, religion and marital status
3. Education – List and date all previous education, including professional qualifications. Place the most recent first. Include specific modules only where relevant.
4. Work experience – List your work experience in reverse date order, making sure that anything you mention is relevant to the job you’re applying for. If you have plenty of relevant work experience, this section should come before education.
5.Skills and achievements – This is where you talk about the foreign languages you speak and the IT packages you can competently use. The key skills that you list should be relevant to the job. Don’t exaggerate your abilities, as you’ll need to back up your claims at interview. If you’ve got lots of job-specific skills you should do a skills-based CV.
6.Interests – ‘Socialising’, ‘going to the cinema’ and ‘reading’ aren’t going to catch a recruiters attention. However, relevant interests can provide a more complete picture of who you are, as well as giving you something to talk about at interview. Examples include writing your own blog if you want to be a journalist, or being part of a drama group if you’re looking to get into sales.
7. Referees – This is usually the last element in a CV. They contain the names and numbers of people who can vouch for you that you are of good behaviour and intellectually capable to handle the job description. The minimum number of referees is 3. Do not put the name and number of someone you do not know simply because you want to fill up the slot. People automatically assume that those on the employment committee do nothing with the names and numbers of the referees you put down. Truth is, we can never be too sure. Just do what is required of you.
One last thing I will like to point out is the issue of lying. Most applicants want to impress and so tell alot of lies on their CV. They lie about the certificates the have, their skills and even work experience. They get selected for an interview and that is the moment where all the lies make it into the sunlight. Most people on the interview committee use psychology to determine who is lying and who is not; who can actually perform if given the job whether they have work experience or not and so many other things. Always show integrity. If you lie on your CV, that means you will constantly lie if given the job. Always tell the truth. If you have no work experience, state it, if its only 2 skills you have, put it down. Honesty remains the best policy!

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