CV Mistakes To Avoid At All Costs!

CV mistakes! Get your cv mistakes here!

So, you’ve found a job (or jobs) that you’d like to apply for and now you need to tidy up and amend your CV! To help you out, I’ve put together a quick list of CV mistakes that you must avoid if you want a chance of securing an interview (and maybe even a job!), enjoy:

1. Do you know your ABC’s? – constantly check your grammar and spelling when compiling your CV! If your CV is full of these kinds of mistakes, it shows Mr or Mrs Hiring Manager that you don’t really care and will INSTANTLY put them off contacting you. Read it out loud, or get someone to check it for you! It helps! As well, download a tool called Grammarly; I’ve had this installed on my work PC for about a year and a half now and use it on a daily basis (I’m using it for this post!), I can’t live without it!

2. Turn into a format-esaurus – save your CV in an easy to open file type (Word – standard .doc, PDF, plain text); there’s nothing more annoying for an employer than having to convert an Applicants CV! Also, don’t use multiple fonts and sizes, keep it plain and simple – this CV fonts / formats infographic provides some very useful insights as to what you should and shouldn’t use.

3. Change is for the better – aka “one size fits all” – try to make small changes and amendments here and there to match the role that you’re applying for. For example, if you are applying for a Project Management vacancy which requires experience within a Construction environment and management of sub-contractors, and you know that you’ve done that before, then get it in there!

4. Using an inappropriate email address – believe it or not, in the short time I’ve been here, I’ve seen a load of unsuitable / inappropriate email addresses for jobs I’ve advertised (I won’t go into them). Please, don’t use your “idislikeyouverymuch@yahoo.co.uk” address. It takes just a couple of minutes to set a new address with a service like Gmail, it’s worth it!

5. (once again) Keywords, keywords, keywords!!!! – I mentioned this in
Tuesdays “Your LinkedIn Profile, Your Second CV” post (which I would highly recommend reading – it’s a masterpiece) and it’s also extremely relevant to your CV! If you don’t already know how modern job boards work, it’s all to do with the keywords that are in a candidate’s CV. We (as Recruiters) type in the keywords and skills that the client is looking for and the CV’s appear! So (for example) if you’re a Mechanical Design / CAD Engineer who is proficient using Solidworks, AutoCAD Mechanical, DesignSpark and IsoDraw, then get them in!Solidworks

I hope that this article has given you some useful tips; good luck writing your optimised new CV!

Your LinkedIn Profile, Your Second CV

Don’t underestimate the power of the LinkedIn profile!

I can’t begin to tell you the importance of having a LinkedIn profile these days, everyone has one and (almost) everyone needs one! Being our Social Media & Resourcing Manager, I view A LOT of profiles every week, and one of my ‘pet peeves’ (is when I do come across someone that is actually looking for a new career) is how poorly put together some of their profiles are!

I’ve seen some amazing LinkedIn profiles in the past, filled to the absolute brim with recommendations, endorsements, awards, projects, etc, and most of those people are securely locked into jobs that they may never leave!

If you are a job seeker reading this and know that your LinkedIn profile is lacking then you need to make use of these tips that I’m about to give you! Let’s begin:

1. Keywords, keywords, keywords! – This is absolutely imperative if you want to be viewed by potential Employers and Recruiters! First, create an ‘elevator pitch’ in the summary box at the top and target it at the people that you would like to see it (e.g. “I’m a versatile and highly skilled Mechanical Design Engineer seeking work…etc, I can bring value to…”), you want this to be about 4/5 lines long. The second paragraph is where you can add in your skills / specialties / keywords. For example, “whilst working at **** I used the Revit CAD package, which assisted me while designing ****”….etc. Placing your main skill in the headline box helps a lot as well! Get the picture?

2. You did what and where?! – Make sure you include (almost) everywhere that you have worked and give it a decent description (tasks, projects, etc). You really don’t need to include that tea making job you had when you were 15…

3. School anyone? – Another one that I (don’t) see on candidate profiles, missing education and certifications! This is especially important if (for example) you have a Degree! This could be the make or break when it comes to a Recruiter contacting you or not. Let’s go back to our Mechanical Design Engineer from above, he went to University and received a 2:1; the client are looking for someone with at least a 2:2, so he’d be perfect! But wait, he hasn’t listed this on his LinkedIn profile, which is going to instantly turn whoever is on his profile away! Certifications wise, if (for example) you’re a Project Engineer / Manager and have a Prince2, get it on your profile! Shout your qualifications loudly and proudly!

So, that’s that! More to come soon about LinkedIn and social media in general; we haven’t even scratched the surface with the above!

8 Ways To Be Successful In The Workplace

Successful in the interview? You were? Congrats! Now it’s time to show your new employers what you can really do!

1. Act as if you’re still being interviewed – Prove you still deserve the position! So far you’ve only managed to show how good you are in a job interview!

2. See your Manager as a friend / successful in the workplaceas a person you’re helping – Just remember, the more you help him / her get done, the more valued you will become within the company! It’s also much more fun and comfortable to work with a Senior member of your team as a friend, rather than an overseer.

3. Be innovative – Push yourself and your work to ‘the limit’! Try to come up with better / more effective ways you and your department can complete tasks.

4. Have a positive attitude – Don’t be one of those people who complain on a daily basis about their work and the company! Stay mentally positive and humble, to show you actually want to be there.

5. The customer is king – The customer is the most important person in your business! Don’t ignore / neglect them, and definitely don’t be rude to them (even if they are sometimes incorrect in some situations).

6. Mimic the top performers – Spot the top performers of the company and figure out what makes them successful / valuable to the company? E.g. why does the Managing Director congratulate / praise them regularly? Is it the amount of hours they work? Is it the way they easily build relationships?

7. Stand out above the rest – Get known for doing something particularly well, be it offering useful assistance to your colleagues / customers, the one who constantly innovates and comes up with amazing ideas, etc.

8. Learn, grow, succeed! – Yes, it’s true, you will most likely get bored with a job eventually. However, one way to avoid this is by taking up / asking your employer about additional training / educational opportunities.

That’s that! Just remember, these are only 8 ways to be successful in your job; there are hundreds more which we will likely cover at some point, so keep an eye for future posts around this subject!

Interview Mistakes To Avoid!

Well done, you’ve secured a job interview! Here’s four interview mistakes that we hope you’ve never made (and never should!)

1. Not getting enough sleep – one of the biggest interview mistakes in ‘the book’! This is going to paramount if you want to succeed at your interview! You’ll be able to focus more, understand and answer the questions with ease and just have a much more positive interviewing experience. Check out this great article from Dreams (yes, the bed company) on why sleep is so important before a job interview. It covers why sleep should be your main priority the night before; how to wind down and that you should even take part in some form of exercise on the day!

2. Not preparing yourselfinterview-mistakesresearch the company, try the companies product (if possible), take part in some practice question and answer sessions online OR with someone else, be it a family member, friend, or neighbor – just not the dog!

3. Not providing examples – So you’ve told the employer that “I’m self-motivated”, “have excellent organisation and communication skills” and “am able to work well within a team”, but can you actually back that up with hard evidence? Every time you make one of the examples, immediately provide some sort of evidence / story to go with them.

4. Poor body language – this is another incredibly important point that can determine a good interview from a bad one! Give a good firm handshake (not crushing), sit up straight, smile, keep good eye contact with whoever is speaking and keep your hands on the table / desk (folded / crossed together) and not under on your knees!

Well, that’s it, thanks for reading! We’ll have more articles like this one for you very soon; there’s plenty of other interview mistakes that we’ll be covering!