Many of our Western Chances scholarship recipients and alumni may be thinking of applying for a job. Perhaps it’s a part time job during University – or your first “real” job after you’ve graduated.
There are a lot of articles online showing you how to write a good CV or resume. They all have great advice. Here, we’ve tried to bring together what we think are some really simple tips to make your CV shine, as well as some specific ways that you can use the skills and knowledge you’ve gained as a Western Chances scholarship recipient.
We’ve also included a great CV template you might want to consider for your next job application.
1. Proof read, proof read, proof read!
According to Adzuna – every third CV contains a spelling mistake. Given that job ads get potentially hundreds of applicants a small typo or spelling mistake in your CV might stop you from getting an interview.
To proof read well, you should print a copy of your CV and read through it slowly, more than once. Reading your CV out loud can help pick up on spelling mistakes as well.
2. Tailor your CV for the job
Many people fall into the trap of submitting the same CV for every job application. Because each job is different, each CV should be different.
That doesn’t mean you should write your CV from scratch every time.
While your CV should be the same structure and include the same work history each time, you can tailor your CV by highlighting different skills. For example – if you are applying for a retail job, highlighting experience in previous roles that involve communicating with people or handling money would be important. If instead you were applying for a job doing data entry you might highlight your experience with computers or your attention to detail.
3. Sell yourself!
It might seem uncomfortable to big note yourself on your CV, but many people downplay their achievements, or fail to mention achievements altogether.
If you aren’t confident in your own abilities, talk to a trusted friend or family member and ask them how they would describe your skills to someone. Then take notes and include that on your CV.
4. Get a second opinion
Make sure you get a family member or friend to proof read your CV. Ideally get a school or university careers counsellor to look over it as they can give you some insight into the language you are using and know which questions to ask you to ensure that you have included all of your experience
5. Talk about your extra curricular activities
If you are applying for your first job you might be worried that you don’t have enough experience. Make sure that you include extra curricular activities like sports activities or after-hours programs on your CV. Those activities provide you with general experience that is called upon – such as leadership skills, communication skills etc. Read this article from FYA to find out what sort of skills are important to employers.
6. Don’t forget about educational experience
At Western Chances we provide scholarship recipients with an opportunity gain further skills and experience as part of our Links program. Our Alumni also have access to free professional development work shops and networking events. If you have taken part in any of these programs – or even other programs through school or clubs – be sure to list them on your CV. As well as naming the program on your CV, talk about the skills or experience you gained by being part of the program, and try to relate them to the job you are applying for.
7. Use your networks
The Best CV template
We know that’s a big call but we think this is a pretty great CV template.
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