CV writing isn’t something that most people enjoy. In fact, it can seem like a chore. However, if you want to land your dream project management job, it is a necessity. With project management becoming an increasingly competitive field, with many opportunities in different industries, your CV can make all of the difference. So, where should you start?
Firstly, let’s deal with the layout of your CV. Your CV needs to be clear and concise. Keep it professional and easy to read. Using exotic fonts and various colors may seem tempting, but it’s only going to frustrate the person reading it. Instead, keep it disciplined, structured, and organised. Do not vary font size or type, and write in first person throughout.
The first thing you need to do when filling in your CV is include your contact details. Put your name, address, and contact information at the top of your CV. This allows potential employers to get in touch with you easily.
Next, you need to put together a brief professional profile. This should be one or two small paragraphs, which provide a summary of your skills and your relevance to the vacancy you are applying for. Make sure you update this every time you send your CV to a new recruiter.
You will also need to include education and career highlights. A lot of people are unsure regarding what to put first. If you are an experienced project manager, your career highlights should come first. If you have less experience, put your education first, especially if it is strong. List any project management qualifications you have achieved or any project management apprenticeship you took. Make sure you include success stories. Employers want to know figures; they want to see how important the project was to the organisation, as well as specific information on project complexity, length of projects, scale of team, and size of budget.
Once you have done this, you can then dedicate a small space to your technical knowledge. This is only relevant to certain roles, i.e. if you are applying for technical, IT, or engineering project management positions.
Finally, you need to include a small amount of information on your interests and hobbies. This is an optional section. However, if you do include it, make sure you highlight hobbies and interests that are going to make you a good project manager. Show a bit of your personality. Employers want to know how you will fit into the team, and so it’s good if they can get a feel for the type of person you are.
One final tip is to make sure that your CV is no longer than two A4 pages. If your CV is longer than two pages, you are in danger of losing the recruiter’s interest. You need to remember that they are going to be looking through a large quantity of CVs on a daily basis, and so the last thing they want is to come across a five-page CV. Also, don’t merely reduce the font size to as small as possible in order to meet the two-page limit!