Learn how to write a CV
CV (Curriculum Vitae) is a short description, that the employee receives when you apply for a job. It contains information on your educational background, qualifications, work experience, your interests and achievements, skills, and references. CVs are also required when you apply for a university program, scholarships, grants etc.
- Chronological form
This form is focused on presenting your work experience, starting from your latest job. It contains details on your education and qualifications, and also is the most common form.
It’s usually used by those who want to apply for a job in the same industry and want to show their progress in career. It is the employer’s favorite form because they can see your career progress chronologically.
The chronological form has its disadvantages. For example, if you have time gaps between jobs, this form makes them evident. Also, if you never switched between jobs, this form will create uncertainty for the employer regarding your transferable skills.
- Functional form
This form starts with your personal profile that highlights the achievements and skills you possess. So, it is based more on the skills and expertise rather than in listing work experience. Since you don’t focus on concrete work, you can mention your achievements from past jobs including volunteer work, internships etc.
Functional form is quite effective when you switch jobs often, or you plan to change something on your career with a whole different field. Keep in mind that this form does not highlight your progress in career.
You should know that usually first impressions are created by the CV. So, it is important that you dedicate your time in compiling your CV in a way that’s organized and clear. Your CV must be easily read. The most popular letter font for a CV is “Times New Roman.” You also need to be careful in spelling and should not use words like "me." For the main titles, you should use upper case letters or highlight them. To avoid monotony, a CV should not be longer than 1-2 pages.
What should a CV contain?
At the top of the page, you need to enter your full name and surname, address, e-mail, and phone number.
Professionals always write the job they’re applying for.
- List your educational preparation
Write a paragraph about your education and qualifications and put them at the beginning of your CV or you can also choose to list them after other parts. List your education in reverse chronological order (from newest to oldest). Write the university’s name, dates when you attended or the expected graduation date. If you have a good GPA do not forget to put it in your CV. Also, you can list scholarships or the subjects you attended that are related to the job you are applying to.
- List your work experience
Write about your work experience and list the company’s name, its location, years you worked there and what were your duties. If you have a long list with past jobs, list only the ones relevant to the job you are applying now.
- List your skills and achievements
Create a paragraph with your skills and achievements, where you can write about the duties you had in past jobs and the skills you gained from those experiences. In this part of your CV, you can also mention if you have anything published, classes you’ve taught, certificates, volunteer jobs’ you’ve attended etc.
- Other information
Compile a paragraph regarding extra information. If there is an evident gap in your CV or you have something to share, then put it in this part. This information may include things like, why you don’t work at the past job before and so forth.
- Finalizing your CV
Check your spelling and grammatical expressions. Poor writing is the fastest way to be rejected. If your CV is full of mistakes, potential employers will not like that. Check twice if you got the company name right, and every other company you worked in the past.
Read your CV as if you were the person who makes the evaluation for the position you are applying for. What do you think of the information provided? Are you professional?
Have someone read your CV. What does he/she think you need to add or delete?
Check out the company's application page. See if there is any other required material for your application. Usually, companies require a motivational letter or samples from your work, such as articles you wrote etc.
Different places require different forms of CVs. Some require specific information, some additional documents, or they can ask for a picture attached to the documents.
Functional CVs are required in the American system, meanwhile, in Kosovo, we have more CVs in the Europass format. This format delivers templates, you just have to fill it with your data. The Europass format is based on the chronological order.
Thus, a CV is a key part that enables your invitation to an interview or disqualification, so be careful how you formulate it. Pay attention and give it time. Also, for each job position you apply, you need to update your CV to see if there is a need to add or remove something. There is no finalized CV form for each job position you apply, so it is important to modify it to suit each position.