How to write a graduate CV - advice from a grad recruiter

Monday, July 31, 2017 09:00

Katherine Hockley by Katherine Hockley

We spoke to Jarrod Ruth, Business Development Manager and graduate recruitment specialist at CoSector, to find out how to write a graduate CV.

Your profile should be clear and concise 

You should have a good profile that explains who you are, where you've come from, and why you want the position. Talk clearly about good work experience and spend quite a bit of time talking about your degree studies. University is where you spent 3-5 years of your life working really hard, so it's good to talk about those areas.

READ MORE: I sat in on an interview for a graduate internship. Here's what I learned

Make it targeted to the position you're applying for. If the job specification says you have to be a strong communicator, focus your profile and work experience to reflect that quality. 

Make sure your CV exudes professionalism 

This can't happen when your CV includes a non-professional email address, like Your email address should be your first name and your surname at whatever email provider you use. 

In a similar vein, only add your social media to your CV if it is relevant and up-to-date. Make a professional Twitter account if you have to. 

Proofread and use spell-check

One of the most common issues is candidates not proofreading or using spell-check. Your CV is your selling tool and without seeing you a recruiter or hiring manager only has two pieces of paper to judge you on. Spelling and grammar mistakes can be remedied so quickly that there really is no excuse for it. 
 how to write a graduate cv

Design only if appropriate

Depending on the job role, a designed digital CV can be great. It gives you the opportunity to portray how creative you actually are and how allows you show off your style or brand of creativity. This only works for certain roles however, such as a design or creative based role. 

If you send off a creative CV for a sales or IT position, it's not going to have the same effect. 

READ MORE: How to spot the right internship

Formatting is very important

First off, stick to a basic Word or PDF format. Make sure all your fonts are the same and don't deviate too much from a standard font style. If it's difficult to read, why would people waste time reading it? 

Use bullet points if you want to and make sure you the first half of your CV is really strong. Employers might look at your CV for 30 seconds max, so the first part of your CV needs to be where the best and most relevant information is situated. 

Having photos on your CVs is also unnecessary – it’s potentially taking up space where you could be selling yourself.

Overall, the main things to remember are:

  • Have a clear and concise profile,
  • Pay attention to spelling and grammar,
  • Remember to keep an eye on consistent formatting. 

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Posted in Recruitment