CV Content - Checklist  


The precise content of the CV or resume is always a matter of balancing the likely value of the information against the space taken up.

Shorter CVs are more likely to be read but it is essential to include any details which are likely to have a bearing on the decision to progress your application.



CV & Resume Checklist



Pretty obvious you might think but we do see plenty of 'anonymous' CVs which are fine until covering letters become detached.

If you prefer to be called by something other than your first name, do make this clear.

For example,  Archibald 'Harry' SMITH.

You can also improve clarity by putting your forenames in lower case and your surname in capitals.


For most employers, location is a major element in the selection process - if you are willing to relocate, be sure to say so. 


It is essential to 'stay in touch' when you are job-seeking.

e-mail Address

Fast becoming the preferred method of contact.  


If this is not obvious from the name.

Note: "Yes please" has been done before and levity in a CV is usually counter-productive.

Date of Birth

Regrettably, some employers see age as a problem but we prefer to include this and dispose of the issue 'up front'.

They will see how old you are when you walk through the door.

To avoid confusion, put date of birth rather than age as CVs often hang around for a while.   

Work Status
Definitely required if you are not a British or EU Citizen.
Languages Well-worth mentioning if you are multi-lingual.
Marital Status Important to some employers but becoming less so.
Health Do mention any serious health issues on the CV or in a covering letter as employers don't like this sort of thing to be 'sprung' on them at a late stage.
Mobility A significant factor in many employment decisions - state whether you are a licensed driver and if you have access to a vehicle.
Salary Level Make no mistake - many employers will need an indication of salary level before inviting you for interview.
Availability Particularly important for contract positions.
The most important single item on your CV is a brief statement describing the 'essence' of what you are about.
Education Unless you are recently out of full-time education with little experience to 'sell', general education is probably best relegated to the back page.

Recent job-related training, professional memberships and qualifications are best mentioned prominently on the first page.

First Page Summary Ideally, all of the foregoing information should be fitted onto the first page of your CV which will then include all significant personal details, a 'snapshot' of what you 'do' and specific information on your technical skills.

If there is too much material, try to reduce 'padding' without changing the information content.

Alternatively, amend the layout - For example, full address, contact information and personal details could be moved to the end of the CV although you should still mention location on the first page.


Employment Summary Individual job descriptions in reverse chronological order giving employer names, dates, positions held, duties and relevant technical detail.

Jobs older than 5 years can be described in less detail or summarised together as part of general background.

Other Information. The place for less important information such as general education, hobbies and references.

Just list main educational qualifications - e.g. If you have a degree, no need to mention all of your CSEs.

No real need to list the educational establishments unless they are particularly prestigious.

Non-recent job-related training can be listed here.

Personal interests can be included here though IT employers tend to be principally interested in relevant technical skills and the concept of looking for 'rounded' individuals who 'work hard and play hard' has rather gone out of fashion.

However, some hobbies such as football, flying or fishing may get you 'through the door' to be interviewed by an employer with similar interests.

For entry-level candidates, previous use of PC's at home or at school will often convince a potential employer that you are more useful than a raw trainee.

Activities such as public speaking or involvement in local politics may well demonstrate skills which are highly-relevant to your job performance but an interest in Eastenders, Coronation Street or "going to the pub" is probably best omitted.

With references, either give them or not - Don't waste space with statements such as "references available on request".

Finally Spell-check  the CV, have it proof-read and keep it up-to-date.

Sample CV / Resume Summaries.


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