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10 CV Mistakes And How You Can Correct Them

June 11, 2024 11:06 IST
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Transferable skills are the hidden gems that can make your CV stand out.
Skills such as effective communication, leadership, problem-solving, adaptability, etc, are highly sought-after by employers. So be sure to list them in your CV, says Ankit Aggarwal, founder and CEO, Unstop.

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How to correct your CV: 10 Mistakes to avoid

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If you are a fresh graduate or a young professional who is job hunting, chances are you might have found yourself in a situation where you weren't receiving any callbacks from recruiters, no matter how many jobs you applied for.

If you can relate to this, the problem might lie in how your CV is drafted.

Job hunting is not an easy process and it's normal to feel frustrated when there isn't a positive turnaround for the job you seek.

This is where crafting a good CV comes into the picture.

It's far more than just a piece of paper with your information on it; your CV is your personal marketing tool that showcases your potential and skills to employers.

In today's competitive job market, a well-written CV can be your golden ticket to an interview for the job you want.

If your CV is being rejected by prospective employers, you may be making these mistakes:

Mistake #1: Including too many details

While you may be tempted to mention everything about yourself in the CV, remember that providing too many details, especially personal information such as country of origin, marital status, etc, can be a deal breaker when you are on a job hunt.

Even if you are an experienced professional, the maximum length of your CV should not exceed two pages.

Making your CV lengthy can overload recruiters with information, making them miss the crucial details that state how qualified you are for the job.

Focus only on the necessary information, like your previous and current work experience, accomplishments, skillsets and certifications, thus presenting yourself as the ideal candidate for the position you are applying for.

Mistake #2: Missing essential information

While it's good to ensure your CV isn't too lengthy, you must include important details such as your contact information, e-mail ID, previous employment dates, education, etc.

Double-check before sending it out to recruiters; missing and/or incorrect details can negatively impact your chances of getting called in for an interview.

Mistake #3: Using the same CV for every job application

Although the base of your CV should remain consistent, it's essential to customise it for each job you apply to, showing employers why you are the best fit for a specific job role.

A customised CV must include keywords and phrases from the job description, which can help you get noticed among thousands of others by recruiters.

Highlighting any relevant skills you possess can be a bonus. But remember to ensure authenticity, as lying on your CV can cause problems for you later.

Mistake #4: Making grammatical errors

A professional, clear and well-written CV creates a positive impression about you as a candidate for employers.

For this, it's imperative that it is error-free.

Reviewing your CV carefully for grammatical, spelling or punctuation errors is non-negotiable when you are looking for a job.

While you can proofread it yourself, utilising online tools such as Grammarly can help you do it more accurately.

Mistake #5: Too many colours and fonts

It can be fun to experiment with colours and fonts but not when you are crafting your CV.

Format it in a logical style with readable fonts and ample space to ensure it doesn’t appear cramped.

Pick colours that will look professional, like blue or deep green, or simply stick to the classic black and white.

When it comes to fonts, it's best to stick to Times New Roman, Arial, Calibri or Georgia for maximum clarity. This will give your CV a professional appearance.

Mistake #6: Outdated/unprofessional contact information

Although this may appear to be an extremely basic tip, it's a common mistake that graduates and young professionals make.

Reviewing your CV thoroughly can help you avoid giving outdated contact information.

Providing correct information will allow recruiters to contact you to schedule an interview.

It’s most essential to have a professional e-mail address.

Ideally, a variation of your full first name and last name will be considered professional.

While contact numbers can be included, keep it simple and avoid using any nicknames.

A professional e-mail address at the top of the CV makes it look polished and formal.

Mistake #7: Vague and irrelevant statements

Your CV must be specific, crisp and clear.

Including vague and irrelevant statements will dilute your strengths and skills and confuse potential employers who often have to look through hundreds of CVs for a job posting.

Words such as 'some', 'mostly', 'probably', etc, are strictly off-limits if you want your CV to appear professional.

It's best to focus on relevant achievements and skills and tailor it for the job you want for greater chances of success.

Mistake #8. Neglecting quantifiable achievements

It's essential that your CV contains quantifiable achievements.

Use numbers wherever possible. For instance, if you have helped the sales grow by 10 per cent in a year, never forget to mention it. These metrics demonstrate the impact of your work, making you an appealing candidate for recruiters.

Mistake #9: Leaving out soft skills

Transferable skills are the hidden gems that can make your CV outshine.

Graduates and young professionals often tend to focus solely on industry-relevant and technical skills, overlooking other skills that can be just as valuable.

For instance, skills such as effective communication, leadership, problem-solving, adaptability, etc, are highly sought-after by employers. So be sure to list them in your CV.

Mistake #10: Excluding certifications

Just like soft skills, listing professional certifications on your CV can make you a preferred candidate.

Including your professional certifications, especially for industry-related and technical skills, can enhance your CV significantly. It can also be an indicator to potential employers that you are eager to learn and grow.

Crafting a CV that will outshine others requires attention to detail and understanding common errors so you can steer clear of them.

One of the best ways to create a good CV is by connecting with seasoned mentors who can share their guidance and help you make a strong CV.

Remember, a well-drafted CV gives you an edge in today's competitive job market and boosts your chances of landing a job.

  • Career-related questions? Ask rediffGURUS HERE.

How to correct your CV: 10 Mistakes to avoid

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