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10 Common CV Mistakes

Suzie Finch
10 Common CV Mistakes

Your CV is the ultimate job search document, done correctly it will open doors and make employers sit up and take note. As a first impression your CV is the one big pitch you need to highlight all your skills and experience and connect to employers. You need to make it count!

Be aware of common mistakes that people make on their CV, cross reference the following 10 points against your own CV to ensure you're job search ready. It could really have a positive effect on your career!

10 Common Mistakes People Make on a CV / Resume

1) Poor Spelling & Grammar:

// Attention to detail is crucial. Get your CV checked and then double checked - It has to be perfect! Many employers will outright reject a candidate for spelling and grammatical errors, make sure that isn't you.

2) Making It Too Lengthy:

// You have around 6 seconds to convince a recruiter, therefore writing an in-depth back story which covers every task and skill is not going to work. Keep your CV succinct and no more than 2 pages (3 for academic positions).

3) Poor Formatting:

// Your CV needs to be easy on the eye, have a clean layout and stand-out amongst the crowds of other job seekers. Check out these CV Examples for inspiration.

4) Making It Too Personal:

// Some information just isn't necessary. Unless you've been specifically asked to include this information we would suggest removing your date of birth, gender, parental status, full postal address, marital status and personal reference contacts from your CV.

5) Omitting A Personal Profile

// Covering skills, experience, areas of expertise and industry specialisms, think of your personal summary as your elevator pitch designed to grab the attention of the reader. Include a single paragraph at the top of your CV, it will make a difference.

6) Structuring The CV Incorrectly

// It’s crucial for a Recruiter to see the most relevant information first. Consistently put the content of each section in reverse chronological order and place the most important information on page one.

7) Uploading The File In The Wrong Format

// Avoid RTF, JPG, PNG, TIFF, ZIP and TXT formats. Make your CV as accessible and user friendly as possible by saving as a PDF file type. Check out “What is the best format for a resume” for more info.

8) Not Explaining Your Past Employers Properly

// It's useful for Recruiters to understand who you've worked for so give a brief overview of what each of your past employers does (one sentence is fine). This is especially important if you are applying to vacancies in similar sectors.

9) Using Negation

// Avoid any negative information or using any type of negation in your writing. Examples of this may include: reasons for leaving jobs, talking down projects, feelings towards past personnel or explaining gaps in your employment badly. Think can not can't - Be Positive!

10) Not Mirroring Keywords

// Take an overview of the positions you are applying for and look for the most common skills and attributes they require. Make sure that these skills stand-out prominently throughout your CV.

This covers the ten most common CV mistakes we see most regularly. For further advice or CV writing services feel free to get in touch.