When applying for IT Graduate jobs the main tool that employers have, in order to decide whether or not to invite you to interview, is your CV. A CV is your own personal sales pitch to convey to employers why they should hire you. Consequently, it is essential for graduates to have a good CV that makes them stand out to employers. We have put together 10 top tips that can help you construct a great IT graduate CV.
1- Keep your CV concise
A CV should be a maximum of two sides of A4. Research shows that employers only spend an average of 8 seconds reviewing a candidate’s CV. As a result you need to ensure that all the information displayed on it can be read easily and that you do not write an essay about yourself as employers are much more likely to ignore it. Keep everything short and to the point.
2- Always keep your CV up to date
You should always keep your IT Graduate CV up to date. It does not matter whether you are actively job seeking or not. Anything of significance that happens in your career should be recorded as to avoid anything slipping your memory should you find yourself looking for a job in the future.
3- Tell the truth
A large number of us are guilty for telling a few white lies on our CV’s or perhaps stretching the truth in some instances. The importance of being truthful on your CV cannot be stressed enough. You do not want to run the risk of potential employers identifying any misgivings in your CV as this will almost certainly prevent you gaining employment within that company. Honesty is the best policy!
4- Do not leave any gaps
One thing that employers do look for in a CV is any gaps in it. Any missing years or breaks in your IT Graduate CV are likely to raise suspicion amongst potential employers and should you reach the interview stage, they will be scrutinised intensively. Remember to tell the truth. If there are any gaps in your CV, ensure that you provide a reason as to why this is the case. If you took a gap year, go equipped with experiences which show specific skills i.e. independence travelling alone or organisation having booked flights, travel and accommodation (try to avoid references to wild nights out though!)
5- Tailor your CV toward specific jobs
Do not just send one version of your IT Graduate CV off to a variety of different employers. Try to tailor it towards each individual position or at least each position type that you apply for. Simple things such as the skills you have obtained are an ideal place to start. State what skills you have and how they are relevant to the position you have applied for. Your motivations for applying may also vary from job to job and it is important to demonstrate why you want the job. Different skills or areas of your expertise can also fluctuate in importance depending on the role. So tailoring your CV can ensure the right bits are highlighted to the right employer.
6- Make your CV look good
Try to make your CV stand out. As stated earlier, this is the primary document an employer has to assess your suitability for a position, try to make yourself stand out from the crowd. This does not mean that you go crazy on Word Art or Photoshop. Just make it bold, ensure that everything is displayed clearly and that it is easy to read. Even using a higher grade of paper can help. If you want to get flashy and show off your tech skills, why not create an online version of your CV? Think of it as a web page that sells you to employers and a place to showcase your IT skills.
7- Ensure that your CV is mistake free
Proof reading is vital whenever you write a piece of literature; however it is even more vital for a CV. Any spelling errors or typos and the recruiters are likely to cast your CV aside as they will not take you seriously. Ensure that your CV does not contradict itself in any way and reads well.
8- Include a covering letter
Some job advertisements request a covering letter. Make sure you read through it thoroughly to identify whether one is required for the position you are applying for. A covering letter need not exceed one side of A4 paper. Remember to proof read it and identify any mistakes before sending it off to recruiters.
9- There is no need to include pictures
Some people still find it necessary to include a picture of themselves on their CV. Unless you are applying for a modelling contract there is no need for an employer to see a picture of you as it shouldn’t matter what you look like.
10- Make your CV keyword friendly
Today, a large amount of recruitment is done online. Many job sites offer you the chance to upload your CV to their databases and then recruiters can search for you according to requirements that they have for particular positions. Ensure that when listing your skills that you have keywords in mind. For example, a Web Designer might include words such as html and php in their CV so that employers who look for those skills can find them easily through a job site search engine.
If you want to give your graduate CV a progrssional edge, why not see that the experts think by getting a FREE CV review from CV Knowhow? Click here to make your graduate CV the best it can be.