Profile image of student, Jerome

September 14, 2022, by jhillary1

How My CV Went From Six Pages to Two with Help From Careers

A CV is your personal marketing tool, so needs to be a summary of your relevant experience and skills, which will persuade an employer to interview you. Although it’s tempting to rush straight into it, it’s important to have a think about what needs to be included to create a CV that is tailored, concise, and easy to read for recruiters.

Here are some points to consider that can help:

Do I need a profile?

If you have written a profile that duplicates points you make in the body of the CV or doesn’t provide the recruiter with something relevant and evidence-based about how you fit the role, it may be better to leave it out.

Is all the experience I have included relevant?

Any CV regardless of length needs to be tailored for the role you’re applying for. When specifying your key achievements whether in education, through work experience, or other interests, you need to ensure it demonstrates the skills and competencies that the role requires. Keeping this in mind can help you avoid producing an overly long CV.

Is my CV formatted effectively?

The layout of your CV and how you have formatted it can help or hinder you. Take a look at our examples to see how you might effectively utilise space on the page. Equally, don’t try to fit as much as you can in by reducing the font size or expanding the margins too much, as this will affect its clarity and presentation.

What would a recruiter think?

Looking at your CV from the perspective of a recruiter can be beneficial when looking at where you may need to cut down. Knowing a recruiter may have hundreds of CVs to skim through can force you to focus each point of your CV. This way it clearly tells a recruiter why you would be a great person for that particular job.

We asked Mental Health Nursing student, Jerome, about the support he received from the Careers team when applying for jobs and tailoring his CV.

1. What are you doing now and why did you choose this career path? 

I am currently on my management placement at Highbury hospital. My previous job as Zonal Compliance Officer in the banking industry was no longer challenging for me, and I wanted to do something new. Due to my passion of safeguarding and caring for the vulnerable (previously doing a lot of volunteering work in this regard) I decided to go for mental health nursing. Also, since mental health nursing is not as advanced in Nigeria as it is here in the UK, I decided to come to the UK to undertake my master’s.

2. How did you make use of support from the careers service? 

When I received an email that I had been shortlisted for an interview, I knew I had to update my CV. I got in touch with the Careers service and Abi Rowse, Employability Officer, went through my old CV with me via Teams for a proper update. We had a couple of meetings to ensure I got it right. Abi took time to explain the reasoning behind certain things she was advising .

I also made use of some interview tips from the Career service. I didn’t have time to attend the workshop at the time, but I was able to play the recording back and make notes. I really appreciate their time in assisting me to make sure my CV was up to standard and that I performed well in the interview.  

3. What advice would you give to someone going through job applications? 

I would say make use of Careers service as they are available to assist you with job applications, CV updates, modifying your CV to suit the job description, and interview tips. The option of a one-to-one appointment is available and I advise anyone to use this. I was able to get my CV down from six to two pages with their help and it was very helpful getting tailored advice, specific to me and my situation.

If you want more ideas on how to improve your CV, you can check out our range of resources online. If, like Jerome, you’d like an adviser to look through your CV, book an appointment on MyCareer

Posted in Applying For JobsCVs and Cover Letters