Ch. 2: Getting the basic details together

In this chapter you will learn how to:

  • pull together accurate facts about yourself, your skills and your experience
  • understand what to put in and what to leave out

The following headings cover the key pieces of information you will need to write down, check or think about in this section:

  1. Personal details: name, address, telephone number, email.
  2. Your personal information: discrimination law, disability, security.
  3. Education: accuracy and proof.
  4. Career, employment or work history: company details, first jobs, voluntary work.
  5. Professional qualifications and memberships.
  6. Further skills and training.
  7. Interests.
  8. References: professional and personal.

Personal details

Your CV should start with your name. Don’t put ‘Curriculum Vitae’ or ‘CV’ at the top, because everyone knows what they’re looking at. You don’t write ‘Shopping List’ above a list of bread, milk, beans and toilet roll; your CV doesn’t need to be labeled either.

The name you put doesn’t have to be the full one from your birth certificate. Roger Winston Richard Johnson can just be Roger Johnson. If your first name is Christopher but everyone calls you Chris, put Chris. For a first name that is unusual, long, or often mispronounced, you might feel more comfortable using a shortened or anglicized version. This could be the name friends or colleagues normally call you.

Harichou could become Hari or Harry, Abhayankari might change to Abha or Abby, or Gbone turns to Bonnie. When doing this, be careful not to end up sounding like a nickname or a joke. Shortening Madi any further could give the wrong impression. It’s better to wait until the interview to admit that your colleagues call you Mad!

In general, if you’re not a native speaker of the language in which you have to write your CV, or a resident of the country in which you're applying for a job, it's a good idea to check name changes (as a minimum) with someone who is.

Abbreviating names can change gender. This shouldn’t affect your chances of interview but can cause confusion! Christine shortened to Chris might imply a male: changing Madhusudhana to Madi might imply a female. If you prefer your gender clear – it doesn’t have to be – you can always add a Miss, Ms, Mrs or Mr to your CV and covering letter.

Standard practice is to list your:

  1. home address
  2. telephone number
  3. email address.

State your full postal address, including an accurate postcode.

Telephone number
Be sure to include the area code and double check it is correct. Most recruiters will bin a CV if they dial the contact number and the person who answers has never heard ...

The extract above has been taken from 'Get That Job With the Right CV'
Copyright © 2010 Julie Gray

Get That Job With the Right CV

From Julie Gray, Senior Consultant at The Resume Center, Get that Job with the Right CV will help to teach you how to write the best possible CV to land that perfect job.

It covers everything from layout and format, through to perfecting a jargon-free writing style, avoiding common pitfalls and tailoring your CV to different jobs.  Julie’s in-depth professional advice and friendly style will guide you through every step of the CV writing process with humor and practicality and give you real confidence to effectively showcase your skills to employers.

As a professional CV writer at The Resume Center, Julie sees every single day which CVs really achieve results.  This puts her in an excellent position to help you to create a truly exceptional CV of your own.