Without a personal connection to get your foot in the door, your CV is your one chance to impress a prospective employer.
But did you know that hiring managers can spend as little as 7 seconds reviewing your CV? With ten, twenty, thirty or more applications to look through in a day, it's easy for small mistakes to cause your CV to be put in the 'no' pile.
We asked some hiring managers to give us common mistakes that millennials make on their CVs.
When it comes to CVs, less is more. Keep it concise, with the most relevant information first. Try to keep it to one page (or at the very most two pages). It'll prove that you can take lots of information and summarise the key points.
Don't simply rely on words to detail your accomplishments. Wherever possible, state quantifiable results that show what you've worked on and accomplished in the past. Numbers stand out in a resume filled with words, so be smart about highlighting your accomplishments. Instead of saying "good experience in coding", put a number to it "3-4 years of coding experience and proficiency in programming languages such as Python, Java, etc".
The hiring manager should understand who you are just by reading your personal statement. This should be 2-4 sentences towards the top of your CV and cover what you're good at and what you're looking for. Be sure to tailor this paragraph for every job you apply for to catch the hiring manager's eye.
Your email address is a significant part of your application. You might think people don't even notice it but unprofessional and completely random email addresses like "email@example.com" or "firstname.lastname@example.org" can destroy your credibility. Show employers that you're professional in all regards.
Never give incorrect information about yourself or your accomplishments on your CV. There's a good chance it could come back to get you in trouble. CVs are kept on record and it's easy to fact check most the information. Honesty is one of the most valued traits in the workplace, so lying right from the start can affect your career.
With some hiring managers scanning a CV in seconds, you need to make sure key information is easily seen through proper formatting - indentation and bolding. There's no rule for this but to make the most important information stand keep company names on the left hand side and dates on the right hand side, with both in bold.
Poor spelling and grammar can be the most harmful mistakes to your application but are also the easiest to fix. Use a simple spell check or an app like Grammarly, and get a friend with a fresh pair of eyes to double check every sentence.
If you’ve had 3 or more periods without working, some longer than 3 months, you’ll need to prepare for one, if not all of the following questions.