Having worked in the welfare to work, training and youth sectors for many years I have personally supported over 1000 people into work and training. I have also worked with 100s of employers, I have listened to their wants and needs and matched candidates accordingly.
Although some companies use application forms, many still want to see your CV, often before they have spoken to you. More often than not your CV is your first impression and as such has major importance in regards to securing you an interview and getting the employers interest.
The biggest and most common problem I have seen is that most people don?t change their CV for each application they make. Instead people seem to make a CV and send it to multiple employers for different job roles thinking that someone will give them an interview. Unfortunately most of the time this is not the case.
Your CV is NEVER EVER Finished, a CV develops with you and should always include what you have been doing most recently, including any training whilst out of work. Don?t worry, you needn?t write a new CV for every application you do but it should be edited before each application to ensure that it matches the job you are applying for.
Why you may ask? The answer is quite simple if you give it a little thought.
Below are some snippets from the first two paragraphs of a current job advert:
We are looking for people who have a caring nature?
Empathetic, compassionate, respectful and resilient - all of this along with having a common sense approach whilst being reliable and positive
The employer is telling you here what type of person they are looking for, plain and simple, so, give them examples of this in your CV. You could list these traits under your Key Skills or in you Personal Profile, even better you could express how, when and where you have demonstrated these.
Your CV should start with a short Personal Profile and should list your Key Skills. By matching these with the advert, in a short and direct manner, the employer is more likely to read on to your Employment History and Training thus giving you a much better chance of being selected for interview.
By using this approach employers can also see that you have read the job description, you know what you are applying for and you have taken the time to show how you match the job criteria. Although you may already have experience and done a similar job that is detailed further down you CV, it is always best to ensure you match the job at the top of your CV.
This is only one aspect of creating a good CV, for more information on CVs a good place to visit is on the National Careers Website, here?s a link to CV support: https://nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk/advice/getajob/cvs/Pages/default.aspx