In the recent history, the most relevant periods, full of changes and social revolutions, match the ones during which a new communication and information technology was born. Have you ever thought about that? I’m referring to when printing was invented around 1440 by Johannes Gutenberg, when radios broadcasting became the most common information source during the Second World War, when the TVs reached the houses of millions of people around 1960 and the television advertising revolutionized the way to make marketing.
We currently live in a similar era. Thanks to the power of internet and social networks we are already going towards an always-connected world, where keeping in touch is easier, even over long distances. The social revolution heavily affected the labour market, which is living hard moments in all Europe and abroad.
Yes, the possibility to reach the whole world with a click is really cool, but what about the strong concurrency that each of us has to win to get a job? It’s common to see an international job offer with one vacancy against hundreds (or thousands!) of applications, so the possibilities to be selected are very few.
For these reasons, building a good and modern CV is something fundamental for your professional growth.
“I’ve tried so many times, but nobody answers me. I don’t receive any feedback. I cannot change job. It’s because of the crisis.”
No! It’s because of you! It’s because you are still continuing to do the same thing, even if it clearly doesn’t work! The questions are: why it doesn’t work? And how can I do to go further and overcome the obstacle of the first selection process? Maybe it’s time to change your CV and update it to the new ages!
Well, let’s try to list some fundamental tips to build a powerful digital CV.
1) Think like a recruiter
This is not a tip. This is the first and most important RULE to be followed. Consider that your application will end up in the hands of someone who can decide your future, so all the following points are absolutely related to that.
2) Trash the European CV format
Unless specifically requested, the European CV format is exactly what you don’t have to send if you really want the job. With such kind of CV, you are completely homologated to the most of your competitors. Your possibilities to be noted considerably fall!
3) How many pages for my CV?
Whether you are a recent graduate or a CEO with 20 years of experience, your CV must to be limited to 3 pages (2 is better for an entry-level). Recruiters use to receive a massive number of CV, so the time spent for each application is commonly in the range of 5-20 seconds! Avoid long and complicated sentences, unnecessary adverbs to enhance your skills, articulate speech. You are not writing the Divine Comedy!
4) Focus on the first page
Remember! You have only few seconds to attract the recruiter’s attention, so one of your most important duties is to understand what your strengths are and put them on the top of the CV in an intelligent way. I mean, if you know three languages, you MUST highlight this information. There is no need to wait the section “Languages skills” at page 2 or 3, with the risk that it will be never read. If you have started to work soon and at the age of 30 you have already 5-6-7 years of work experience, this skill MUST be part of your general information at the beginning of your CV.
5) Recruiters and automated scanning tools work with “key words”
Most of the time, the recruiter doesn’t have the knowledge to properly understand what exactly you do in your job. Rather, he gets general indications from the project manager related to the scope of work, which often become key words, used by the recruiter to make the first screening of the received applications. So, you MUST find the best three-four key words for you and put them at the top of your CV and written in bold. If you apply for the RIGHT job vacancy, your possibility to be selected will be higher.
A similar consideration should be made related to the automated scanning tools, which can trash any CV without one of more key words selected by the user.
6) Motivations and Targets
The dream of any manager is to find an employ as skilled as he hope and with a wide margin of growth, which represents the potential of the candidate for the future.
Be sure, anyway, even if you are the best professional for the job vacancy, if you will not able to demonstrate your high motivation for that, your strong passion for what you do, your desire to make a radical choice like a job change or a relocation in another city (or in another country!) your hiring will be improbable. Only a professional with a high motivation can do the best for him and for his company. Yours shall be clear since the first moment.
7) Be original!
Avoid the buzzwords (and most commonly used into a CV) words, like:
- Results driven
- Team player
- Problem solving skills
8) Yours is a DIGITAL CV, not a sheet of paper on a desk
Probably (or maybe surely) you’ll send your application through a digital media like an online recruiting tool or a simple e-mail. This means that who’ll receive your CV will read it through a PC and he/she will print it only in the (rare) case that you’ll pass all the selection process until the “live” job interview. So, this is a great possibility to make sure that the recruiter will be able to check and verify your competence and reference through a simple click!
Add your own website address, the one of your current or past company, the one of your school / university, the LinkedIn URL of your references, and everything could be useful for the recruiter to understand WHO you are, WHERE you worked and WHAT you do.
9) QUANTITATIVE data
A quantitative resume emphasizes results and productivity by using measurable data instead of merely descriptions. Employers seek candidates who can meet productivity goals and often look for NUMBERS on the resume to support this claim. What kind of career successes have you had in terms everyone likes to see – numbers? Detailing that you achieved a 25% increase in third quarter sales at your past company is much more impressive than simply stating that you increased third quarter sales!
10) You are in the SOCIAL RECRUITING era
Social recruiting is about sourcing and recruiting candidates via the different social media platforms. Social networks enable recruiters to take a highly efficient, multi-channel approach to hiring, in much the same way as marketers target customers. Through viewing candidates’ social profiles and engaging with and nurturing candidates, social media enables recruiters to better understand candidates.
That’s why, if you have not already done it, you MUST start to build your online professional presence and personal branding. What kind of branding do you have? There’s an easy way to check what image you are showing to the world. Google your name and see what shows up! Remember that now you are NOT you. You are WHAT GOOGLE and SOCIAL NETWORKS say you are.
So, if you have built a good online branding, why don’t you add links to your social networks?
11) Looking for a job is a job
You have to study how. You have to plan it. You have to work on. It takes time and effort, but with the right strategy it will be possible!
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