Here at CMD, we believe that no question is a stupid question, and it’s our mission to make sure every applicant is as prepared as they can be when they apply for their dream job. So, here’s the answers to those job search questions you didn’t want to ask.
1. Should the word resume/CV appear on my resume/CV?
Although on most stock photos about job-hunting and interviewing you’ll see a piece of paper with the word “Resume” written on it, we don’t recommend this. A potential employer already knows they’re looking at your resume, so all that should be at the top is your name and contact details.
2. How long should my CV be?
Although it can be tempting to list any and all achievements you’ve ever made, we recommend a standard CV should be 1 or 2 pages long.
3. I can’t get my CV down to 2 pages – how do I shorten it?
Remove or condense down to one line some of the earlier jobs in your career, especially if they’re not relevant to the job you’re applying for. If you’re applying for a job in the IT sector, the employer doesn’t need to know all the details about your holiday jobs and school projects, unless they highlight your awesome IT skills.
4. Do I need to add my date of birth/age?
You can add this if you believe it's relevant but it's not necessary information a hiring manager needs to know and remember a potential employer cannot
ask for your age.
5. Can I jazz-up my CV a little?
Depending on the job you’re applying for. If you’re looking for a role in a design industry (graphic design, web design etc) it can be a good idea to format your CV so it shows a bit of pa-zazz.
However, this is not always necessary and if you’re not looking in that sector, an over-designed CV can put potential employers off – they simply want to read about your skills, they likely don’t care what font you’re using.
This depends greatly on the number of jobs you’ve had and their relevance to the role you’re applying for. Remember, you only get 2 pages to show off your career history, so this may go back 10 years or 2 years.
6. How far back should my job history go on my CV?
This shouldn’t matter too much anyway, as most employers that are hiring will take a look at your LinkedIn page for a full career history (so make sure that you keep that updated!)
7. Should I write a cover letter, and if I do who should I send it to?
We always recommend writing a short cover letter, explaining to the employer why you’d be a good fit for their business. No longer than 1 page, it should be short, sweet, and customised specifically for each job application.
Writing a cover letter shows an employer that you’ve not just chucked the same CV at them as you have everyone else; you’ve taken the time to research their company and understand why you’d be a good fit. The letter should highlight your key skills and include some relevant experience from previous roles. You can send this along with your CV and job application, or email it to the hiring manager directly (if you have these details).
8. I’ve always been told to stuff as many keywords into my CV as possible. Is this bad advice?
Although it’s important you use relevant terms and professional language throughout your CV, it can actually be off-putting for the reader to see a “buzzword” every 2 sentences, especially if they’ve just been chucked in for the sake of it.
Your story and integrity will shine through more strongly when you stay concise and steer clear of jargon. Just make sure to list technical qualifications and appropriate experience.
9. I’ve had an interview – how long should I wait before following up?
We recommend following up on the same day as the interview – it’s usually best to give your interviewer a couple of hours to gather their notes/finish other interviews before dropping them an email thanking them for seeing you, and reminding them to contact you for any further questions.
We hope this helps, but if you still have questions you need answering, feel free to check out our FAQ page for more information. Alternatively, you can contact us directly on 01225 805080 or register with us online.