As a job seeker, first impression is everything and your CV could be a great platform for this. But when it comes to CV writing, not everyone can. Always remember that even the best CV can be let down where presentation is poor. Not only does the CV have to be professionally presented but also well written so as to catch the employer’s eye. There are a few rules that should be followed when drafting a good CV regardless of the change in formats which also depends on your career development industry. Well written CVs will always increase your chances of success.

Personal information; (Marital status, age and religion)

It may seem an obvious thing to say, but the ‘Personal Details’ section of your CV is your first opportunity to introduce yourself to a potential employer. Get the basics wrong at this stage and you can wave goodbye to the chances of getting into an interview room. When writing your Name in a clear and larger font and please do not include nick names, Date of birth, Nationality, Marital status only include these if it’s a requirement or if you think it will increase your chances of being hired otherwise it’s not necessary, Contact details, you should include a phone number and a professional email and not an email like this will be communicating something different to the employer.

Unexplained gaps in employment;

This creates bias. Recruiters hate thinking about what the applicants/ candidate’s possible responsibilities would have been. Ensure that you explain your responsibilities. However, make sure that they are also in line with the Job description at hand.

Misleading information / Lying;

Obviously, you should describe yourself to the best possible light and this calls for adding a little sparkle in your CV. BUT, always remember that recruiters are the best researchers and that they will always do back ground checks to find out more on issues like salaries, job titles, Qualifications Etc. Be honest because this may lead you to a next step.

Long CVs;

Ensure that you keep your CV short but to the point. A long CV indicates that you are either not a persistent person on job or you are personally not concise. A good and standard CV should at least cover a maximum of 3 pages.

Wrong Formats;

With the technological advancement in the 21st century, recruiter’s no longer handle hard copies of CVs. They deal with soft copies therefore have them read on screen which makes it easy to tell the different formats that the candidate may have used. Always stick with fonts such as Times new romans size 10 & 12 and Calibri.  Avoid crazy backgrounds and coloured fonts.

In a nutshell, as a job seeker, always consider aspects like proof reading, honest bullet points and CV order (chronological order) when drafting one.


Many times a recruiter/Employer gets to meet your CV before they meet you in person, and like we all know first impressions are priceless. So how do we ensure that the CVs we write and submit to Employers are of great quality and a proper representation of “U”? Writing a CV always takes care. This is the case whether you are starting from scratch or updating your details. Below are some tips and things to put into consideration as you work on your CV;

Contact Information;

This should be limited to the basic information like contacts, Professional email address and the names. It may seem obvious but some people tend to forget it. Where a candidate has a URL to their LinkedIn Profile, do not hesitate to include it. Information regarding age, marital status and religion sometimes creates bias. Unless it’s a requirement for the job, do not add this on your CV. Ensure to at least have two contacts so as it is easy to reach you. Remember so many contacts are sometimes confusing.

Professional profiles/ career Objective;

This should immediately capture the attention of the reader and entice them to find out more about you. This gives a summary (well explained but brief) about the candidates experience and the different industries they have worked in. It also gives a picture of the candidate’s goal in line with career development. Your goals should be crystal clear. Always ensure that it doesn’t carry a lot of cram work.

Core skills;

Whether you realize it or not, we pick up a number of skills over time, some tangible and some not. These should always highlight important support duties that the employer may have focused on. I.e. computer knowledge, team work among others. It is always good to keep these matching with the Job description at hand. Ensure to set the level of skill set you are at (whether basic, intermediate or advanced). Some skills are hard to substantiate like communication and programme management so they should be backed up with examples

Employment history/ Career Summary;

The role description should have a brief outline telling the reader what your employer does, who the candidate supports and what his particular responsibilities are. List your most recent position first and the rest in a reverse chronological order. Aim to use bullet points to highlight the responsibilities for an eye catch.

Education Qualification;

This should as well be kept in a reverse chronological order. It must be as brief as possible and in highlights. To experienced candidates, it may come after the career summary, however, to jobs that bring out education levels as key, this may be called for 1st. E.g. Secretary with a diploma in Library and Office Management, Education should come 1st.


This is a very important section. However, it’s not a must to have them listed. You may as well put a note that they will be availed upon request. If it’s your fast job, you may as well list your mentors. It is in you favour to list references that you are confident will give a positive feedback to your potential employer. Also make sure that they can easily be contacted by the employer. Besides having supervisors as references, character references are also very important.

Finally, the purpose of the CV is not get you the job, but to the interviews. You are not writing it to yourself but to the potential employer or reader.  Due to big volumes of CVs received daily, readers at least give some seconds to each, so always get it right.

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