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Richard Wilcock's session during Stand out week

Richard Wilcock's session during Stand out week

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  • This is the objectives we thought of (run through) See how they match to the objective on the board.Gain a better understanding of what to include – also what not to include!!So the first thing to look at is the purpose of your CV. Any ideas?
  • purpose? Run through. Employers may only give it 20 seconds. Targeted. A few seconds on this and say RW to come to this in a bit more detail soon.
  • So coming onto when to use, when do you actually need to send a CV?First bullet – If actually says CV but also if it says to apply in writing. Then you would generally send a CV and cover letter. If not sure about cover letter there are some sessions, grab a leaflet from outside in the zone. Does everyone know what I mean by speculative? Basically when no job advertised but perhaps you’ve research the employer and really want to work with them.Does everyone know about recruitment agencies?SHOULD BE 12.10 AT THE END OF THIS SLIDE
  • TILL 12.15 – At this point, hand out Admin Asst Job Spec and ask class what would skills/experience/behaviours need to be communicated in a CV to secure an interview
  • TILL 12.15 – At this point, hand out Admin Asst Job Spec and ask class what would skills/experience/behaviours need to be communicated in a CV to secure an interview
  • So onto the content. This is just a guide of what you might like to include.There are no real right or wrongs, you need to go with which heading work for you. Mention briefly that you might want a more generic ‘additional skills’ or can you break it up into things like ‘positions of responsibility?We’ll now look at some of these sections in some detail.
  • Keep this section brief – third of a page absolute MAXWhich do you think should be included? Get a few ideas from the students then reveal ticks and crosses on next slide
  • Name – this is your title – you do not need to put CV at the top of the page as it is obvious what it isContact Details – address (home & term time if appropriate), telephone numbers & e mail (NOT JOKEY!!)Nationality & work permit – include your nationality (international students) & clarify your permission to work in the UK.Driving Licence – you could include this under personal details or elsewhere e.g. Interests & Other Achievements section.Mention things you don’t include and why. Laws etc. and cultural differences with parents info
  • This is just an example of how it might look.
  • This usually comes right at the beginning of your CV, after personal details. 5 lines maxIts not meant to tell an employer all of your skills, just give them an idea of your aims.Be specific!
  • As you can see, it’s short, to the point, gives an employer an idea of where you may ‘slot’ into their organisation. SHOULD BE 12.20 AFTER THIS
  • Should be 12.25 after this
  • This is your chance to show an employer the skills you have. Hence it should be tailored. look at the person specification to see what the employer is looking for. If there is not an advertised job vacancy you can find out about the job role and the skills employers typically look for by using the Prospects Graduate Careers Database.It is not enough to say ‘I have good communication skills,’ you need evidence of this, so always give examples!!! can be drawn from your academic studies, from work experience and part time work, from volunteering, involvement in clubs & societies & from hobbies & interests.Where people lack relevant experience they might choose to produce a skills based CV, where work history may be much smaller or even non existent and the CV focuses on skills section.
  • You can see the format, no ‘I’ and not full sentences.Active words like ‘organised’ ‘secured’ and examples of when. Also hard outcome.
  • One way of maing sure that your key skills section is comprehensive is to use the STAR technique. This will make sure that each little point is well formatted. Situation is find to find a context, so while working at, while studying at, In my gap year etcTask is talk about what it is you had to do. ‘worked in a customer service environment, responsible for making a decision on…’ Action is the key. WHAT YOU DID. WHAT YOU CONTRIBUTED. ‘I liasied with staff to book a date, I developed a more economical way of…’ Result- an outcome.
  • Should be 12.35
  • This section might also be called Positions of Responsibility or Membership or Additional Information depending on what sort of information you choose to include.Go for quality - rather than a long list of hobbies e.g. football, socialising, reading, theatre, travelling. Focus on those that add most value to your application and demonstrate responsibilities that you had and the skills developed or situations where you have made a significant contribution.
  • Should be 12.45
  • So we’ve being looking at Pratik Patel’s CV throughout.As you’ve noticed it’s very good.Pratik wants to apply for an admin job at LeicsUni, (give out full CV) can you see anyway of improving it?Mention to think about it properly because on the face of it it’s very good CVGive them 5 minutes should be till 12.50
  • 5 minutes of discussion/feedbackDo say it was tricky because a good CV, not obviously a bad one.Career objective says ‘office experience’ nothing more. Could say wants to work for Uni. Relevant modules for degree? Pratik mentions modules which is good, but has he considered whether they are rel?Key skills they ask for someone who can work independently and has good communication skills. Def mention these!Should be 12.55
  • Final 5 minutesMention arial,calibri are fairly safeWouldn’t go under 11 font size.Mention problems with boxesMention arms lengthMention competition and things like grammar being v important. If in doubt, ask a friend or tutor.
  • RW


  • 1. Stand Out Week
    Create Winning CVs!
  • 2. Objectives
    • Understand the importance of a CV and it’s purpose
    • 3. Identify when to use a CV
    • 4. Gain a better understanding of what to include
    • 5. Identify where improvements can be made
  • What is the purpose of a CV?
    An effective CV should:
    • Persuade an employer
    • 6. Emphasise your suitability
    • 7. Inform an employer of your key skills
    • 8. Be targeted
  • When do I use a CV?
    When an employer requests it in a job advertisement
    For making speculative applications
    To give to employers at Careers Fairs
    Recruitment agencies
  • 9. Targeting your CV
    Job description
    Person specification
    Other ways to research a role/opportunity/company?
  • 10. Exercise 1
    In 2/3s discuss what skills/experience/attributes you think would be needed to be communicated on a CV
  • 11. Possible sections in your CV:
    Personal Details
    Personal Profile or Career Objective
    Education & Qualifications
    Employment or Relevant Experience
    Key Skills
    Additional information
    [Prizes, awards & major achievements]
    [Positions of responsibility]
  • 12. Personal Details – which ones would you include?
    Name Gender
    Photograph Address
    Contact numbers Driving Licence
    Nationality and Work Permit Age
    Marital status Parents name
    Religion Sexuality
    Health Email address
  • 13. Personal Details – which ones would you include?
    Name Gender
    Photograph Address
    Contact numbers Driving Licence
    Nationality and Work Permit Age
    Marital status Parents name
    Religion Sexuality
    Health Email address
  • 14. Example of personal details:
    Pratik Patel
    515 New Road, Surrey, KT1 3VB
    Tel: 01435 645140
    Mobile: 07533 81136
    Work Permit: Eligible to apply for Tier 1 Post Study Work
  • 15. Career Objective/Personal Profile
    A good career objective or personal profile should:
    Give an employer an overview of your career goals
    Be short and snappy
    Always be used if you can’t include a cover letter
    Tailored for each application as necessary
  • 16. Example of a Career Objective:
    Career Objective
    An enthusiastic business administration graduate with
    excellent IT skills and office experience, looking to pursue a
    career in administration and finance.
  • 17. Education
    Chronological order (most recent first)
    Include dates, name of institution, qualification name and grade
    List relevant modules/areas studies
    Formal/professional qualifications only
    Keep formatting clear and consistent
  • 18. Example of Education
    2004 – 2007 The University of Leicester
    BA in Business Administration (2:1)
    2002 – 2004 The College of Surrey
    A Levels in English (B), Science (B) and Business Studies (B)
  • 19. Work Experience
    Chronological order (most recent first)
    Can include all types of work experience (part-time, voluntary, internship, etc)
    Include dates, name of organisation and job title
    Bullet point achievements, key responsibilities and skills developed
    Tailor your work experience
    Keep formatting clear and consistent
  • 20. Example of Work Experience
    2007 – 2009 Bennett Plc, Surrey
    Administrative Assistant
    Developed an electronic database for all paper resources
    Improved communication skills by chairing weekly support staff meeting
    Assisted the Director with her diary and schedule
    Learnt to use excel effectively to manage and track office finances
  • 21. Key Skills
    Keep it snappy, avoid long narrative sentences
    Tell an employer why you are right for the job
    Tailor your key skills
    Give examples!
    Quality not quantity
  • 22. Example of Key Skills:
    Successfully led many projects at Bennett PLC including the transfer of all
    paper based resources on to the electronic database. Responsible for
    Delegating tasks and decision making. Consequently, Bennett PLC
    were the first office in the South East to have a fully electronic database.
    Problem solving
    Faced numerous challenges during my time as a volunteer at Guy’s
    Homeless Shelter. Had to be creative and overcome a severe lack of
    funding. Initiated many brainstorming sessions and eventually organised
    a fundraising event where we were able to secure the funding we
    needed for a further year.
  • 23. STAR Technique
    Situation (‘Whilst working at…’)
    Task (‘I was responsible for…’)
    Action (‘I had to produce financial reports’)
    Result (‘ The day ran very smoothly and 80% of the staff rated the day as excellent’)
  • 24. Example of active/achievement focussed words
    Assessed Analysed
    Created Co-ordinated
    Delegated Researched
    Developed Encouraged
    Evaluated Implemented
    Initiated Organised
    Managed Motivated
    Produced Supervised
  • 25. Additional information
    Opportunity to expand on achievements and additional points of interest
    Quality rather than quantity
    Section might include prizes, awards, membership of professional bodies, additional qualifications, languages and positions of responsibility
    Keep it relevant and tailored
  • 26. Exampleof additional info
    Graduate member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development (CIPD)
    Prince2 Foundation Certified (2005)
    Chair of University of Leicester’s student debating society (2007/8). Key duties included arranging annual ‘Varsity Competition’ between ten other Universities which greatly improved my organisational, project management and communication skills
    French (fluent), Spanish (conversational)
  • 27. Interests
    Opportunity to list extra-curricular interests/activities
    Ideally related to role applying for
    Be prepared to discuss in an interview anything you mention in this section!
  • 28. Example of Interests
    Travelling, playing football and reading science magazines
  • 29. References
    Two options (both perfectly acceptable);
    ‘Available on request’
    List reference name and contact details
    If choosing second option, ensure your referees are aware of any application you have made – they may be contacted straight away!!
  • 30. Exercise 2
    This exercise is aimed at getting you thinking about where improvements could be made on a CV
    Pratik wants to apply for a job as an administrative assistant in a university
    Using the job specification, can you advise Pratik on any improvements that could be made?
  • 31. Improvements?
    Is Pratik’s career objective acceptable?
    Could Pratik mention more relevant modules under his degree?
    Key Skills - Pratik talks about leadership and problem solving but is the employer interested in
    these skills?
  • 32. Final Tips!
    Keep to 2 A4 pages Don’t use boxes or tables
    Use good quality paper Don’t produce PDF & Zip files
    Print in black ink Don’t use a font that’s too small
    Use a professional font Never have too much on a page
    Check spelling and grammar!
    Keep your font and layout consistent
    Use paper clips instead of staples
  • 33. Further advice?
    We offer:
    1:1 feedback in bookable appointments
    Telephone feedback
    E Guidance
    You can also use our website for tips and example CV’s:
    We also have paper based Career Development Guides in the Zone for you to have a
    look at.
    Don’t forget our other workshops this term!