Graduate recruitment can be a very competitive marketplace and as we hire over 1,000 graduates each year in the UK our recruitment teams know what makes a great CV, where the best places to be searching for opportunities are and how to get your dream role.
Your CV is the first opportunity you get to showcase yourself to your potential employer, so it is vital that you create a strong first impression. It’s important that your previous experience and studying is represented properly in your CV and as most recruiters spend less than a minute looking at CVs, you need to make sure it catches the employers’ attention. .
- Stand out from the crowd – we see loads of CVs every day so it’s great to see something a bit different. It also shows that the candidate is creative and willing to go the extra mile.
- Tailor your CV to the job – occasionally I see a CV specifically tailored for the FDM Graduate Programme with relevant skills/experience highlighted and why they want to work for FDM. This shows the applicant is keen!
- Keep it concise – I usually don’t spend long looking at a CV so relevant skills and experience should be easy to see at a quick glance. Putting your main skills, achievements and responsibilities in bullet points rather than a long paragraph throughout the CV makes it stand out and more easily readable.
- Use buzzwords – similar to above point, buzzwords help us pick out relevant info quickly and also may help candidate’s being sourced for specific roles when recruiters are using buzzwords to search job sites.
2. Attention to detail
The most common mistakes our recruiters highlighted when reviewing applications were spelling mistakes, grammatical errors and typos. Small mistakes like this are easily avoided and a well written CV demonstrates to the employer that you are professional and have high attention detail. Remember to use spell check on your CV and ask a friend or colleague to read it over before you send it.
3. Prepare in advance for the assessment day/interview
If you are invited to an assessment day or interview take the time to research the company, its history, values as well as the role, responsibilities and desired skills. Think of how your experience and skills aligns with these and examples when you have displayed them. Ensure you get as much information from the recruiter about the day; Are the interviews strength or competence based? Will you need to sit any tests and on what topics? The more information you have, the more you can prepare.
4. Utilise job sites and LinkedIn in your job search
Finding the perfect role can be time consuming. Our Intern Nicole has already investigated the best apps to help you find your dream role.
5. Remember to smile and be yourself
Interviewers want to get to know you and whether you would be a good team fit, so be professional but let your personality show.
Updated 31 May, 2017