CVS / AUG. 14, 2016
version 8, draft 8

5 Key Elements of a Tailored CV

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In order to get the job of your dreams, you need to customise your CV to match your skills to the job requirements.This is what your CV should include!

Job searching is hard for everyone; it’s stressful, and it almost never goes as you’d hoped it would, but we all need to do it to get a job we like. The problem is that we often make the job search harder than it needs to be, by not doing everything we can to ensure that each application results in an interview.

To reduce the stress that comes with job hunting and guarantee success, it’s important that you go the extra mile and do your research on the company, as well as ensure that your CV addresses all the requirements listed in the job description.

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You have to pay extra attention to your CV as it’s the one thing that can get your leg in the door, and it’s also the first impression the hiring manager will get of you, so it needs to be perfect.

Always keep in mind that hiring managers are busy people, and they receive hundreds of applications for each job they post, so it’s important for your CV to convince them that you are a good candidate.

This means that upon reading your CV, the hiring manager should be able to realise that you are the ideal candidate, and they should arrange to meet with you ASAP. To do that you’ll need to make sure your CV matches the job requirements listed in the job description and to do that you need to pay attention to the key elements listed below.

Why Do You Need a Tailored CV?

But, before we address the key elements that a tailored CV should contain, it’s important to first discuss why you need a tailored CV to find a job.

It Makes It Easier for the Hiring Manager

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I’m sure that you’re well aware that hiring managers are busy people, and this is especially true if you’re applying for a position in a larger organisation. In these companies hiring managers can receive hundreds or even thousands of CVs for a single position and their key concern here is to discard the CVs that have no chance so they can make a list of candidates who have potential.

They are going to look for CVs that are easy to read and list skills and qualifications that match the job requirements. For your tailored CV to make it through this stage, it’s important for it to be concise and focused.

It’s also important for you to take account of the fact that the hiring manager might be someone from the HR department who is not familiar with the terminology or other specifications of the job so make sure that it addresses what is required in the job description in ordinary language.

For example, if the job description lists skill A, don’t list skill B because you know that the two skills are similar. Assume that the hiring manager might not know and explain how skill B relates to skill A. This will help your CVs chances of not being discarded.

It Shows How Motivated You Are

A tailored CV means that you took the time and trouble to show them that you have what it takes. It shows that you’re attentive to detail and that you are an individual who’s willing to dedicate themselves to the task at hand. So, a tailored CV proves that you have a good work ethic.

It Shows That You’ll Be Willing to Go the Extra Mile From Day One

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A generic CV will always make it obvious that you spent zero time customising your CV, and the hiring manager could easily think that if you spent no time ensuring that your CV is related to the job they shouldn’t spend any time on you.

Although you may think that customising your resume will take an enormous amount of time; it’s a rather short process if you know what to pay attention to. To make this process easier for you and ensure success, we’ve created a handy checklist of all of the essential elements a tailored CV needs.

 #1 Understand the Job Description

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It may seem obvious, but a lot of us miss things when reading a job description because of our eagerness to see if the job fits us. However as soon as you’ve determined that the job fits you, make sure that you take the necessary steps to ensure that you fit the job as well.

Start by reading through the job description carefully and jotting down any skills and qualifications listed. Also, write down the duties and job responsibilities you’ll need to have should you be hired. This will help you address each item individually, and it’ll ensure that you don’t miss out anything when you’re writing your CV.

#2 Make Every Experience Relevant

It’s important for you to understand that hiring managers want to hire people who know what they’re doing, and this essentially means that you should be able to prove that you have relevant work experience even if you haven’t done the same job in the past.

Keep in mind that every job you’ve ever done in the past can be made relevant to the job you’re applying to, so make sure that you note down all the duties and responsibilities you had at previous jobs and determine how they are relevant to the job you’re applying to. You’ll be surprised to discover that you have a vast amount of transferable skills that can be used in your new job.

#3 Use the Same Language

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To ensure your CV’s success, it’s important to familiarise yourself with the language used by the organisation. This means that you should pay attention to the tone they use and their style. For example, is the language they use formal, or is it more hip and playful? It’s important that you write your CV accordingly as companies and organisations are always looking for someone that can fit in with their company culture. And if your CV is too formal and they are not it might make them think that you’re not a good fit.

To understand what kind of language they use make sure that you not only read the job description, but that you also go through the company’s website, social media profiles, as well as any newsletters that the company releases.

#4 Place Your Most Relevant Experience At the Top

It’s important for you to understand that tailoring your CV to fit the job description doesn’t just mean making sure that you have transferable skills, but that you also tailor your CV in such a way that it’s easy to understand why you’re applying for the position. If you need to write a longer CV or if you need to rearrange the items on your CV don’t be afraid to do so as the idea behind a tailor-made CV is to ensure that it makes sense to the hiring manager.

It’s always a good idea to start with something that will immediately make it clear why you’re applying. So think about what could make the hiring manager happy or more excited to read about you and place that at the top. If it’s some of the duties at your current position, make sure that it’s the first thing the hiring manager sees.

#5 Ensure That It’s Clear Why You’re Applying

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If you are applying for a position that’s a bit (or very) dissimilar to any position you held in the past it’s important that your CV is written in such a way that anyone who reads it can tell why you want to get the job you’re applying for.

It’s important to do this otherwise someone might think that you’re applying for the sake of applying, so make sure that it’s clear why you want this job and that your CV is written in such a way that everything included on the CV focuses on why you’d be great at this job.

A tailored CV can help you with getting any job you desire, all you need to do is pay close attention to the job description and to do your research on the company. These two factors will allow you to write a CV that will cater to the needs of the company and ensure success.

Do you have any other tips for our readers who are creating their tailored CV? Share your thoughts with us in the comment section below.

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