Viewing 31 posts - 1 through 31 (of 31 total)
  • Help with a CV
  • Premier Icon breninbeener
    Free Member

    Mrs B has just retired from the Police after 20yrs. She wants to work and has seen a job with an outdoor equipment retailer that is coming up locally.
    Having been in her last job for 20yrs, she hasnt sought employment anywhere else for this time and as such she has no formal CV.
    I havnt applied for a job in almost 30yrs, so im no help what so ever.
    Can anyone point us to a guide where we can have a template and some input for creating a CV?
    Many thanks

    Ian

    Premier Icon nickjb
    Free Member

    Can’t really help with templates but there isn’t that much to them. Content is more important than format. For that sort of job change you need to look at transferable skills and market those. Management, organisation, time keeping, people skills, dealing with money, not nicking stock (tongue in cheek but honesty and integrity or something like that), etc. Also split up the last 20 years to show different roles. Good luck to Mrs B.

    Premier Icon PrinceJohn
    Full Member

    I’ve always tailored CVs towards jobs – make sure you read & understand the job description & person specification & aim them towards what they need.

    Usually the covering letter gives you a good chance to answer what they are looking for too.

    Make sure it’s clean & easy to read – don’t use decorative fonts.

    Premier Icon poltheball
    Free Member

    Novoresume is great for a free, well formatted one-page CV.

    Premier Icon andrewh
    Free Member

    Short and to the point.
    Read their job description/requirements and say how you meet each of them. (They want this experience. In my old job I had to do this which is similar and did it for five years) Any you don’t say something else (eg. I’ve never used your software but I learnt these ones really quickly so I’m sure I can learn yours quickly too)

    Premier Icon drnosh
    Free Member

    Don’t say that you managed a police database!

    Premier Icon duncancallum
    Full Member

    On the sticky thread about services there’s a chap who is a recruiter who kindly helps…

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Full Member

    If you have MS Word, it has a whole section of “resume” templates. Might also be in the free online version, I’ve not checked. The problem with a CV from a template though is it will look like a CV from a template.

    There will be many, many “how to write a CV” guides on the Internet (many of which will contradict each other). I’d suggest starting by doing a bit of reading.

    General advice: Be clear and concise, don’t obsess about page count as it’s irrelevant. Be consistent with your formatting and grammar. Put most recent / relevant history first. Talk about herself not those around her, “I was part of a team of brain surgeons,” so what, you could have been their cleaner for all I know. Any achievements, awards, successful projects, get them in there (with reference to the previous sentence). A CV is a sales document and it has one job, which is to net her an interview.

    And probably the single most important piece of advice: Get someone to proof-read it.

    Premier Icon baddddad
    Free Member

    As above, your CV is literally just to get you through to the next stage. As someone who sees hundreds of CV very month, a tailored CV and good cover letter saying why you’d love the job will always get my attention. Anything generic is hard to pick out from the rest and double check for spelling mistakes and errors. If they’ve forgotten to change the company name on a cover letter for example, it’s almost guaranteed rejection. Make sure you add personal info (non work stuff about you like hobbies etc) and page count IS relevant, keep it to two or three pages wherever possible.

    In terms of templates just use one of the modern templates in Word or available by google search.

    Premier Icon jimmy
    Full Member

    I signed up for Cv writing website – helped me to just plug he information in without worrying about format. I then saved it and have re-used it as a template since, without keeping the subscription.

    That said, I need some help getting content right now.

    Premier Icon lunge
    Full Member

    On the sticky thread about services there’s a chap who is a recruiter who kindly helps…

    Waves.
    Drop me a DM if I can help.

    Premier Icon mrhoppy
    Full Member

    As someone who at the moment is spending a lot of time reviewing CVs page count is important, you need to be demonstrating that you can put info across concisely and can identify the important and relevant information to convey. Anyone can dump their personal and professional career onto paper, a good candidate can condense that to make it compelling. The best CV I’ve had recently was from someone early in their career 1 page long, super tight, but clearly explaining relevant skills and development. If your wife has one role for the last 20 years then if she can do something similar it would reflect well. Unless she’s moved around LOTs and all those jobs are relevant then you don’t need more than 2 pages (by all means keep references separate).

    Check for spelling, grammar and formatting, particularly if there is any kind of Comms in the JD. I had someone mis-spell attention when stating they had good attention to detail, at that point you’ve lost the battle.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Full Member

    page count IS relevant, keep it to two or three pages wherever possible.

    Sorry, you misunderstand, I knew I should’ve worded that better. Obviously you don’t want to be submitting a phone book (though the phone book these days is about the size of a CV anyway…). Rather a CV is as long as it needs to be, this mythical “one-page CV” holy grail is just that, a myth.

    If you’re a fresh-faced graduate or you’ve done the same thing for 20 years (ie literally the same tasks, not just working in the same job role) then you’d likely be hard-pressed to get it over one page. But if you’ve had a long and varied career, have lots of qualifications and so forth then it’s going to be longer and that’s OK. I once had a CV from someone who’d obviously been given this pearl of wisdom and had attained it by printing the entire thing in a Flyspeck font with the margins and almost all white space removed. It was migraine-inducing.

    Like I said, be concise, but don’t sacrifice effective communication in the process just because it runs to a page and a half. Maybe “efficient” is the word I’m grasping for here.

    Premier Icon toby1
    Full Member

    It’s not useful to know what the team, organisation or product did. Tell me what you did to better that team, organisation and/or product.

    As others have said, what you wife did, how she made it better for herself and others around her is really useful for people to know. It doesn’t need to go into a great deal of detail as it can make an interview talking point.

    Finally a little personality really helps too, dry impersonal CVs never got anyone’s attention.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Full Member

    ☝ this, 100%.

    Premier Icon dufresneorama
    Free Member

    I have only ever used my CV when actively hunting jobs… Handing them into places. I didn’t think those recruiting accepted CVs now, you just have to complete their application.

    What I would say though is to print it on posh paper. It’ll stand out as it will feel different from all the others.

    Premier Icon tabletop2
    Free Member

    I have only ever used my CV when actively hunting jobs… Handing them into places. I didn’t think those recruiting accepted CVs now, you just have to complete their application.

    What I would say though is to print it on posh paper. It’ll stand out as it will feel different from all the others.

    Most places ask for CV then you have to fill out whole application which is the same info that’s on the CV. It’s all digital though it won’t be printed out I’m sure! Those days are long gone

    Premier Icon timmys
    Full Member

    What I would say though is to print it on posh paper. It’ll stand out as it will feel different from all the others.

    I was about to take the piss regarding who the hell has submitted a hard copy of a CV in the last 15 years, but it actually made me think of a legitimate point…

    …don’t be one of those morons who submits the CV as a Word document so that it is appears entirely randomly formatted based on whatever OS, version of Word /crappy Open Office thing, installed fonts etc the recipient happens to be using. A PDF is the correct way (and an excellent primary screen if you have a pile of CV’s to get through).

    People do all kinds of weird things on CV’s now. Keep it clean and simple. The latest information overload thing seems to be giving yourself a mark out of ten for how proficient you are at things – I most often see it with programming languages. I can’t see how marking yourself as 2/10 for something is a good look!

    This is another recent ‘information overload’ gem I had last week on a CV. WTF!

    Premier Icon chakaping
    Full Member

    One thing I’d say, and the recruitment professionals may beg to differ, but I’d suggest listing roles and then the key responsibilities, skills and achievements in bulletpoint form under each.

    Think of it as a clickbait listicle about why they should employ you.

    But don’t say: “Number seven will knock your socks off.”

    And perhaps a few general bulletpoints at the top listing key attributes and selling points. These can be tailored to each role.

    Premier Icon Tom-B
    Free Member

    @lunge gave me some mega advice on this when I posted a thread asking the same several months back.

    Premier Icon PrinceJohn
    Full Member

    Set up a website that hosts your CV & send them a clickbait email – ‘you won’t believe what this person wrote on their CV’

    (Don’t really do that)

    But also be confident but not cocky

    Premier Icon lunge
    Full Member

    Paper CV’s? We work in a remote world, they were dead pre-lockdown, they’re completely buried now. I hire people and look at CV’s for a living, I’m genuinely not sure what would happen to a paper CV that arrived at our offices. In normal times it may have found its way to my desk, I’m not sure it’d find it way to my home now.

    It’s much about getting the CV in front of the right person.

    Premier Icon mrhoppy
    Full Member

    But if you’ve had a long and varied career, have lots of qualifications and so forth then it’s going to be longer and that’s OK

    But your CV shouldn’t be a list of positions and qualifications held so length of career shouldn’t really matter. It’s the summary of relevant experience, and that should be tailored against the JD. This will mean that some things aren’t important either from scope, passage of time or just sheer repetition of more recent role experience.

    Premier Icon dovebiker
    Full Member

    I used to see a lot of ex-military CVs and I imagine a police career is pretty similar i.e. a big list of roles and job descriptions full of acronyms.

    I used to say, tell me what “you” did, not what happened to you.

    Start with the ad / job description and key attributes and use those to structure a covering letter to explain why you’re the best candidate for the role / organisation. The CV should be the supporting evidence.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    OP – good luck to your wife.

    We employed a new administrator who was ex-police. She was excellent at the detail of her job, fitted into our little team well and had great rapport quickly with customers. 👍

    So good in fact that the company down the corridor nicked her with her offer of a payrise…. 😓

    Premier Icon lunge
    Full Member

    This is bang on. Think about the job you want and not the one you’ve done.

    I used to see a lot of ex-military CVs and I imagine a police career is pretty similar i.e. a big list of roles and job descriptions full of acronyms.

    I used to say, tell me what “you” did, not what happened to you.

    This is also true. There’s a fair argument that, with a few exceptions, any experience that’s longer ago than 10 years is not overly relevant and doesn’t need to be on a CV.

    But your CV shouldn’t be a list of positions and qualifications held so length of career shouldn’t really matter. It’s the summary of relevant experience, and that should be tailored against the JD. This will mean that some things aren’t important either from scope, passage of time or just sheer repetition of more recent role experience.

    Premier Icon sillysilly
    Full Member

    Use a simple template or something like Canva if you want to make it look fancy. Keep it simple / short and focus on the covering letter / why they should take you even though you don’t have direct experience.

    I get a decent customised covering letter with less than 10% of job applications at scale. Always happy to take risk on someone’s potential over what direct experience they have for roles that don’t require specific technical expertise. No reason you can’t jump into a role like described in a matter of days.

    Good luck…

    Premier Icon i_scoff_cake
    Free Member

    Over the years my CVs have evolved and changed, both in terms of format and content.

    IMHO, they best CV advice is actually from people who read them on a daily basis. In some cases, they are just parsed through by a machine looking for keywords!

    Also, remember, as has been said, they are just a means to get noticed, so just see them as a means to an end. Nobody is going to hire you on a CV alone.

    Premier Icon scruffythefirst
    Free Member

    We were recruiting heavily a while back and I spent less than a minute reading a CV for a job I was recruiting for my team, and that’s after it’s been reviewed by HR and my seniors.

    Anything with typos or spelling errors went in the bin, anything with a funny format likewise.

    I skimmed through looking for keywords against the job description, and some hint at individuality. A lot of the time a single bit of interest, hobby or side skill got them the interview as most of the CVs I saw, the person met all the basic requirements for the role.

    Absolutely tailor them to the role and check off everything in the advert against a line or skill in your CV.

    Premier Icon breninbeener
    Free Member

    Thanks to everyone for some sage and timely advice.

    MrsB is feverishly typing away at her laptop, with reference to this guidance.

    Many thanks

    Ian

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