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Help with CVs

Crafting the perfect CV can be daunting, but our tips can help. See our guide on what to include and exclude when writing a CV.


  • type your CV and print it on plain white paper
  • use a simple font, such as Arial, throughout your CV
  • use a simple, professional format
  • make sure you spell-check your CV thoroughly. If it’s littered with spelling mistakes, it can’t be a winning CV
  • Be realistic and sell your skills without making things up. There’s no point saying you speak fluent French if all you can say is “Bonjour” and “Au revoir”
  • use bold headings to highlight different parts of your CV and make it easy to read
  • include all training and volunteering on your CV, experience is experience, especially if you haven’t had much paid work in the past
  • acknowledge gaps in your CV. Time away from employment for lots of reasons is not unusual, but you are still using and developing skills in this time, such as being a parent.
  • include a link to your portfolio, if this is relevant
  • use keywords throughout your CV, this will help it get noticed by Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)
  • be specific about your accomplishments
  • tailor your CV and cover letter for every job application to meet the needs of each employer
  • use bullets points to create short, sharp sentences that define your skills and experience without dragging on forever
  • Ask someone to read over your CV and give constructive feedback. This could be an employment and training adviser, someone who works in your target industry, or someone with recent experience of job-hunting and CV-writing
  • remember to trust your instincts with your CV. Everyone has their own opinion, and suggested changes aren’t always for the better


  • use coloured or fragranced paper with different font sizes and types
  • create a CV that's more than two pages long. The longer it is, the less likely an employer is to read it.
  • type large blocks of text - they look dense and difficult to read
  • include details and information that do not relate to the job you're applying for