When it comes to applying for a new job, your CV is the definite key to get your foot in the door and snag that interview. But how do you make sure your CV stands out from the rest? 

Making a winning CV is easy once you know how and we’ve got the tips right here for you. 

To start, get the basics right. Your CV should include personal and contact information; education and qualifications; work history and experience, relevant skills to the job you’re applying for; your own interests, achievements and hobby; and of course references 

A winning CV is always presented carefully and clearly. The layout should be clean and well structured with no extra embellishments. A key thing to remember is the CV hotspot – the upper middle area is where the recruiters eye will naturally fall, so include your most important information. Remember, presentation is key.

Stick to no more than two pages. A good CV is clear and concise. You don’t need pages and pages of paper, it’s better to keep things short and sweet. Remember, employers receive dozens of CVs so it is highly unlikely that they’ll read each CV top to bottom.

Now the key to nailing your CV is understanding the job description. Take note of what needs you can fulfill and fill in the blanks by adapting the skills you already have. For example, if the job requires sales experience, you can use any retail work you have done in the past. It demonstrates the skills you have and shows they’re transferable. 

Tailor your CV to the role. You should never send a generic CV as it can be seen as lazy and it will not get you an interview. Change your CV to match the job specifically. It doesn’t need to be re-written however a few adjustments will make it relevant.

Think about what you’ve done outside of work to grow your own skills. This could come from being in a local sports team or volunteering. Making the most of skills can help you stand out from the crowd. 

When it comes to listing your work experience, use assertive and positive language such as “organised”, “achieved”, or “developed”. Try to relate the skills you have learned to the job you’re applying for. 

References should always be included. Make sure your references are from someone who has employed you in the past and can vouch for your skills and experiences. If you haven’t worked before, it’s ok to use a personal reference such as a teacher or mentor. Try to include a minimum of two. And the last thing, keep your CV updated. Don’t forget to update any changes of contact details and add any new skills or experiences you gain.