How to write the perfect CV profile
How do I write the perfect CV profile?
Your CV profile is the entrance to your CV and your very first impression on a recruiter (although we strongly recommend making contact BEFORE you submit your application).
It is an opportunity for you to highlight your key achievements and point the employer towards your CV successes. Your personal profile should be concise and persuasive enough to convince the recruiter that you are a candidate more than worth interviewing.
Summarising your entire career history into a short 50-200 word paragraph (no more) may at first seem like a daunting task. Following these few simple steps will enable you to quickly create a compelling profile for your CV.
1. Match your profile to the job specification
Tailoring your experience and skill set to the job description is one of the most important things you can do. When applying for any job your most important task is to show why you are perfect for the role.
Read the job specification carefully and match your skills and experience with the key competencies. The key competencies are usually flagged up in the job description or are listed under “essential” and “desirable”. Including this information in your CV profile is an early and easy opportunity to impress.
2. First or third person?
It can be difficult to know whether you should write your profile in the first or third person, as there are no definitive rules about what is best.
Some CV writers are of the view that first person is preferable, in that it gives your CV a sense of direct authenticity that third person does not. But third “smart” person can allow you to make the most of a short paragraph. But whatever you do – don’t mix the two!
3. Answer the key questions.
Your CV profile should answer key questions about you: who, what, where? This structured approach allows you to give a succinct CV profile which addresses the questions your potential employer needs answers to you. More importantly, it allows you to highlight your most impressive achievements.
Who – what is your employment background and education?
What – what is your career background and education? What unique experience can you offer the employer?
Where – Where have you worked in terms of industry or kinds of organisation? If your employer is looking for someone who can “work with people at all levels of an organisation” choose an example which demonstrates this.
4. Finish with a career aim
This will show employers that you have ambition and are capable of proving your skills in order to move up in their organisation. Again, try to match this to the job description or the role provided.
“As recent graduate from Strathclyde University, with a 2:1 honours degree in International Marketing, I have undertaken several internships within local start-up businesses such as Glasgow Radio and Clyde PR. These placements have enabled me to develop not only specific marketing industry experience but also key transferable skills set in this fast-paced sector.
“During placement with Glasgow Radio, I worked in the marketing team contributing to projects – such as social media campaign– and managed my own research, liaised with journalists and the digital marketing manager, put together media reports and participated in group project meetings. Using excellent communication skills, I developed and maintained successful working relationships with those around about me.
I am now looking to secure a position in marketing/PR, where I can add value to the organisation and continue to build on my current skillset further”.