CV Advice, Tips & Template

Your CV is the first opportunity that a potential employer has to see how you present yourself. Make the most of it and ensure that it portrays a clear, accurate picture of your skills and experience. Follow the advice below, then take a look at our CV template - simply fill it in and register online - it couldn't be easier!

To submit your CV to The Blue Lynx Group please click here
To view our tips on creating a CV, please click here
To open our CV template, please click here

Getting Started
Choose a clear typeface (min 11 pt), do not use an italic or difficult fonts to read and keep your font consistant throughout your CV. Preparation is key: check examination results, certificates, dates of education and employment. Ask two people to be your referees.

If you are including a profile, keep it to a maximum of three lines, summarising your key qualities and aims. The CV should be no longer than two pages. It is easier to read if it is split into sections such as personal information, employment history etc.

Personal Information
This should appear at the beginning. Include your name, full address, telephone numbers (work/home/mobile) email address, work permit/visa information (where applicable), nationality and date of birth. Your date of birth need not be sent through to a prospective employer, but for Blue Lynx purposes, your date of birth is key to our Admissions Department.

These should always be accurate. List all qualifications and details of other professional courses, in chronological order and include names and dates of schools/colleges/universities attended. This section should also include computer skills and language skills with your level of competency.

Employment History
Begin with your most recent job. Include your role and responsibilities, duration of employment and reasons for leaving. Highlight particular achievements to demonstrate your success. If there are any gaps in your employment, please explain them.

Personal Interests
Listing your interests is important, as it will give further insight into you outside of the workplace. Any specific details you can give are helpful. For example, instead of saying 'drama' you could expand and say that you are a member of the local amateur dramatics club and starred in the latest production.

Useful Tips - Create Content That Sells
Although it is a well-known fact that resume design should get attention please remember it is really the content of your resume, the descriptions of your skills and abilities, that both determine how many interviews you generate.
As an example, compare the following statements. Make sure you 'promote' yourself as well as you can.

'Before' Resume:

Maintained records for accounts Receivable and Accounts payable Accounts.

'After'  Resume: Managed over 1,000 accounts receivable and payable accounts working directly
with the CFO.

and Finally...
Before submitting your CV, check it thoroughly. Make sure that all your facts are correct, that there are no spelling and/or grammatical errors and that it is a true representation of you.

Quantify & Use Power Words
As the example above shows, using numbers to describe your achievements and responsibilities can greatly expand and elevate your image. Characterising descriptions by figures has the effect of creating vivid images and impressions in the mind of employers when they read your CV, whereas general statements easily escape from the mind. Similarly, another successful strategy is to use power words or active verbs to match the level of position you want. For example, if you want to use the experience gained before to move into a management position, you have to use as many "management oriented" words as possible so as to build up your image. Compare these two statements:

'Before' Resume: Gave work assignments to staff of entry level accounting clerks
'After'  Resume: Directed workflow, supervised and trained accounting staff performing posting to general
ledger and accounts receivable.

The importance of a Cover Letter
You can improve your chance of being invited for an interview if your CV is accompanied with a cover letter. Your cover letter affords you the opportunity to express yourself in writing, stating your motivation and interests etc.

A well-written cover letter will help the employer identify you better. Your letter should be able to highlight your CV and your skills and how you intend to use your skills to benefit the company. It is also possible to list the subjects studied, especially for young graduates.

A cover letter does the rest of what your resume cannot do. Covering/motivation letters sent by email to Blue Lynx are registered along with your CV for future reference. However, you may be asked to submit a tailor-made letter of application.

The above tips are intended as a guideline for a first attempt at making your CV, or as a checklist to compare your existing CV against European norms.

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