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A CV can take many shapes, whether it be graphical or conservative, and often you will find additional segments that only appeal to particular individuals. One thing to remember, however, is that there are 5 CORE elements that you MUST show on your CV:

  1. Personal Statement / Career Summary

This is a short snippet of your skills and abilities. It isn’t a cover letter, and it most definitely is NOT written with pronouns. 2 – 3 sentences that includes some keywords and eye-catching sentences.

  1. Skills / Core Competencies

Keep this segment short and concise. Avoid long-winded statements and use keywords instead. List about 9 key strengths that will reinforce your experiences.

  1. Work Experience / Professional Experience

Depending on the level of experience and your education level, this segment is usually next. IF you are a recent graduate, then this will come AFTER your education. Format this segment as it is the most important on your CV. Some examples may include:

  • Having a mix of bullets and paragraphs (where the bullets are used to emphasise achievements)
  • Different colour schemes or bullet types
  • Months beside the years

Whatever you decide, make sure it is consistent throughout.

  1. Education & Training / Education & Qualifications

This can be a tricky section as some people have only their Leaving Certificate, while others have extensive academic backgrounds. If you did complete any in-house or external training, that doesn’t require renewal and is less than 10 – 15 years old, then please include this on your CV. Of course if you feel it isn’t relevant, then leave it out. IF the certifications do require renewal and you have, only include the most recent.

IF you have completed any form of education or certification after Leaving / Junior Cert years, you don’t need to include your Junior or Leaving Cert. This really only applies to those who are still in school.

  1. Voluntary Experience

This segment is optional, but for many, they tend to leave this out. This segment is rather important as it shows that you have commitments outside your work experience that utilises different skill sets.

Still have information you want to share?

In that case, you can consider including the following sections to further strengthen your abilities:

  • Publications
  • Awards and Distinctions
  • Technical / Language Proficiency
  • Major Achievements
  • Projects (Professional or Academic)
  • Conferences / Seminars

This list is endless, so long as you keep it consistent throughout.

What happened to References / Hobbies & Interests?

You may notice that this blog didn’t consider Hobbies & Interests or References as CORE sections. That is because, they aren’t. As CVs continue to evolve certain aspects are not considered as important as they once were. Now, this isn’t to say that you can’t include them if you wish.

For references, if you have enough space on your CV, you can list your referees. Alternatively, you can simply put ‘References Available on Request’. If you have an interest in something which led to you joining a club or volunteering, then include this on your CV. Try and avoid cliché phrases like: ‘Socialising with friends’ or ‘Going to the cinema’. They add no value to your CV. Try and make it punchy and exciting to the reader.

Source: Original article by CV Tips and Tricks

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