What kind of CVs convince recruiters? Learn 5 methods!

Your CV (curriculum vitae, or resumé) determines whether you’ll be invited for an interview. Your CV is your calling card, and just like an advertisement, it has to be credible. So treat it as a marketing tool that will help you build a professional image and convince the recruiter that the company will gain by hiring you and no one else. What should you do for your CV to be truly effective? It’s enough to follow a few rules.

  1. Include only true information
    An experienced recruiter can easily test your actual knowledge of a foreign language, the education you claim to have, your duties or your degree of engagement in a project for your previous employers. There are no ideal candidates, so certain gaps in your experience or skills don’t automatically doom you to failure. It’s important for the information in your CV to fit with what you put on social media portals (LinkedIn, GoldenLine). It’s definitely better to concentrate on stressing your true strong points than to add color to your experience and skills. A few targeted questions is enough to unmask even a small lie – and in contrast to gaps in your experience, that disqualifies a candidate immediately.
  2. Write correctly
    Correct grammar in a CV says a lot about a candidate. Spelling, style and punctuation mistakes, colloquialisms and typos in an application can be evidence of sloppiness. On this basis, the recruiter may draw the conclusion that the candidate will communicate the same way on behalf of the company, e.g. sending documents with errors to clients or suppliers. It’s a shame to lose a chance at a new job for that reason, so before sending out your CV, check that it’s written correctly. It can be helpful to use the editing functions in Word, or to ask someone else to look over the text with a fresh pair of eyes.
  3. Use an appropriate photo
    A photo is an important element of your CV, and helps in building a professional image. It’s usually the first thing a recruiter sees after opening your application. Your picture should be high-quality, clear and made by a photographer who uses the right lighting and background, and ensures that you present yourself professionally. The photo should show your face and perhaps part of your torso. You should definitely avoid using informal photos, e.g. from a meeting with friends or a vacation, because this can be received negatively by a potential employer.
  4. Include references
    References increase a candidate’s credibility and professionalism, so it’s good to include them in your application documents. It’s best to include contact information to people who can provide opinions about you if the recruiter is interested, and confirm your previous responsibilities and degree of engagement. A valuable source of information for the recruiter will be not only your direct supervisor from your previous workplace, but also people from your team – don’t forget to include their positions. You can always add written references to your application, or say that they’re available upon request.
  5. Save the file in the right format
    The formats that are universally used are .doc and .pdf. If you use another option, you run the risk that the employer won’t be able to open the file because they don’t have the right program. If you’re sending your CV in .doc format, it can happen that the recipient is using a different version of the program, which changes the way the document looks. Because of this, the .pdf format is safer, guaranteeing that the document will look the way you want it to. On the other hand, many recruiters have to copy the data from your CV into internal recruitment systems, so by sending a file in .doc format, you can make their job easier. Documents in .doc format also make it easier to search for candidate skills in a database.