Did you know that the average graduate will apply to around 29 graduate schemes in their final year in a bid to land a job?
This means that you are likely to face a lot of competition in your bid to land the graduate role you always dreamed of.
But don’t panic, because you can greatly increase your chances of being noticed by employers, if you take the time to craft an interview-winning CV.
If you’re struggling to get noticed in the education job market, check out these five practical ways you can improve your CV and increase your chances of finding your graduate job.
1. Use keywords from the job advert
It’s a good idea to carefully read over the job description and highlight any keywords such as skills or experience that the employer is looking for. You can then pepper these keywords throughout your CV to make it easier for the recruiter to see why you’re a good match.
For example, keywords that may be important to graduate roles could include organisation, communication, research, problem solving, enthusiastic.
2. Include your hobbies and interests
As a graduate, you might not have a huge amount of work experience behind you just yet. In this case, it can be beneficial to include your hobbies and interests on your CV, providing they are relevant to your target jobs and industry.
An example of some relevant hobbies could be volunteer work, coaching a sports team or teaching a language or instrument in your spare time. These can equip you with useful transferable skills that show you’re a good fit for the role.
3. Cut the fluff
It’s important that you know what to include in your CV and that you remove any irrelevant information that doesn’t benefit your application. This means placing particular importance on your degree and any related experience, as well as the skills you learned.
Try to avoid irrelevant information such as outdated work experience like the paper round you did when you were 12, or qualifications that are not used within the jobs you are applying to. They will just take up precious space on the page.
4. Carefully consider your structure and format
Recruiters will spend around six to eight seconds reviewing a CV before they decide whether it is suitable or not. As such, you need your graduate CV to be structured effectively and as easy to read and digest as possible. To do this, you should:
- Get rid of any long, daunting paragraphs
- Make reading easy by breaking text up and using bullet points
- Leave some white space between sections
- Keep your CV to a maximum of two A4 pages
- Choose a clear font in an easy-to-read size, for example, Times New Roman in font size 12
5. Tailor your CV to each role
Finally, recruiters can spot a generic CV a mile off, and this is a sure-fire way to find yours on the rejected pile. So, if you really want to impress, you need to do your research and tailor every CV you submit to the specific role and educational establishment.
To do this, you should use the job description, school website and other online resources to help you learn as much as possible about the role and organisation.
By following these five steps, you can boost your graduate CV and increase your chances of securing an interview for your next exciting role in education.
Andrew Fennell is the founder and director of StandOut CV, a leading UK careers advice website. He is a former recruitment consultant and contributes careers advice to publications like Business Insider, The Guardian, and The Independent.
About the author
Andrew Fennell is the founder of CV writing advice website StandOut CV – he is a former recruitment consultant and contributes careers advice to websites like Business Insider, The Guardian and FastCompany.