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CV tips to land you a job

Keep it short

  • For fresh grads and anyone with less than 5 years of experience, keep your CV within 1 page.  
  • For experienced job seekers with over 10 years of experience, keep your CV within 3 pages.

Customize for every job

  • Every time you apply to a job, customize your CV to highlight experience and skills that match the job requirements.
  • Make sure your CV prioritizes prior job duties to match the job description of the job you are applying to.

Check and recheck

  • Ask someone more experienced and diligent than yourself to proofread your CV.
  • Carefully check for spelling and grammatical mistakes.
  • Use Spellcheck!

Be factual

  • Do not embellish any detail in your CV, especially your duties, achievements or salary
  • Don’t alter the dates of your employment or education
  • Expect HR of prospective employers to do reference checks

5 sections you must include

1 – Contact information

  • Full Name – Use the largest font
  • Telephone/WhatsApp
  • Personal email – do not use unprofessional email addresses e.g. drunkskunk@ or hellokitty@

2 – Career Summary

  • Use 2-3 sentences to sum up your past experiences and where you are heading.
  • Highlight skills, experience and achievements relevant to the job you are applying.
  • For fresh grads, include your degree and GPA
  • For experienced job seekers, include your achievements

3 – Work Experience

  • List all your jobs (start with most recent in reverse order)
  • Length of space for each job should reflect the length of time you worked there (longest job should include job duties than shortest job)
  • Include “Reason for leaving” for each job. Gaps in time is fine as long as you can explain them.
  • For each job, include the following:
    • Company Name
    • Location
    • Department & Job Title
    • Start and End Dates
    • Job duties and achievements
    • Prioritize points relevant to the job you are applying
    • Use action verbs (e.g. “Managed a FOH team of 10”; “Achieved annual turnover of $1 million”)

4 – Education

  • Fresh grads may place Education section before Work Experience
  • List all your education including universities, colleges, vocational training schools (most recent first).  
  • For each school, include program/certification name, school name, location, date of completion/graduation

5 – Others

  • Computer Skills
  • Language Skills (include level of fluency e.g. Fluent English, Native Mandarin, Conversational Spanish)
  • Memberships in any professional associations (e.g. Member of the SKAL)
  • Ability to operate special machinery/equipment (e.g. Point of Sale terminals; driver’s license)
  • Volunteer positions, only include current involvement and organizations widely recognizable
  • Sports – participation in sports is often an indication of personality traits such as team player, discipline, competitiveness and perseverance
  • Other skills and information that will help you get an interview