CV & Interview Tips
Preparation! Preparation! Preparation! It sounds cliche but results are only achieved with hard work!
The part that everyone dislikes writing about themselves, in reality a CV is a written reflection on your education and experience/skills, a snapshot about who you are and what you want to achieve. We have put together a few basic points to assit you in CV writing.
- Keep your CV to the point, use bullet points to emphasise your most relevant skills.
- Good presentation - you want your CV to be easy to read, no colours, borders or fancy fonts please.
- Always start with a personal statement - a paragraph expressing your intended career path and goals in your field of interest. Be specific don't use generalist terms such as " to find employment within a dynamic company" everyone has this objective. What makes you different?
- Employment - needs to begin with the most recent giving dates and your job title and a brief summary of duties and accomplishments.
- Education - List education in reverse chronological order including for example degree, level, subject, university and year.
- Additional Skills - extra skills that you may have gained such as specific IT skills, software programmes, knowledge of foreign languages.
- References - Always provide 2, the most recent work reference i.e manager/supervisor or if you are a graduate - a university lecturer or course leader. Please make sure that your referees can provide you with a reference before including them on your CV. If you do not wish to provide references on your CV you can simply state "References Available on Request".
Interviews can be very stressful so we have highlighted a few rules below to follow in order to leave a good impression.
- Background - always do your research on the company and find out as much as you can about the role.
- Give yourself plenty of time to reach your destination and always get directions to avoid being late.
- Dress smartly and be presentable- there is no second chance to make a first impression.
- Always make sure your mobile phone is off.
- Have a firm hand shake, always make eye contact and smile.
- Be confident the interview is a conversation about YOU and your experiences no one knows this better than you, it is also an opportunity to find out more about the company and the role.
- Keep answers precise no waffling if you don't understand something it is ok to ask for clarification. Always have a couple of questions prepared to ask about the company, culture or job role.
- Be positive about everything- nobody wants to hire a negative employee.
- Never talk about money or company benefits unless promted by your interviewer, people want you to have passion for the role and the company not about money and benefits.
- Shake hands, thank them for their time and remember SMILE.
Questions that maybe asked
It is useful to prepare answers to some popular questions that arise at an interview, this is an opportunity to prove you are the right person for the job.
Tell me about yourself?
What are your Strengths?
What are your Weaknesses?
Why do you think you are suitable for the role?