How to write a CV that stands out?

The situation on the labor market is changing. Jobs are disappearing, demand is rising and HR professionals can finally choose from candidates. So how do you stand out from the crowd? How to create a CV that stands out? We asked HR consultant and coach Zuzana Fiantoková about that.

You work as an HR consultant and your mission is to work with talents. How often do you see that people choose and do a completely different job than the one for which they have the talent and personality prerequisites?

We carry this from the past, when we went to study the field recommended to us by our parents, and then it went on with us. Nowadays, I see it at fifty percent. Today, people are discovering that it is better to do what they enjoy and what they are good at. I just want to point out that this is my estimate based on my experience. It’s not a proven statistic.

Why does this happen? Is it a lack of job opportunities, or do candidates not have enough self-reflection to evaluate their strengths and weaknesses?

People still haven’t figured out that they can get advice from professionals. They do not know that there are career counselors, coaches or psychologists for them who have different tools, different experiences and can guide a person. It pays to invest time and money in these things, because it will bring you joy and success. And many times better financial evaluation.

In the current situation, competition in job search will be higher. In Top Vision you now run a webinar CREATE YOUR CV that WILL EXCELLENT . What does the graphic design of the CV itself reveal about the candidate? Is intelligence, professionalism or creativity recognizable at first sight?

The first look at the CV says a lot about the candidate. You can get to know professionalism, also creativity, especially in creative professions. For example, it happened to me that someone applied for the position of graphic artist, but his CV was not creative at all and nothing excelled. In addition, it contained a lot of spelling mistakes. So I eliminated this candidate right at the beginning. And as for intelligence … The CV will show above all whether the person has common sense.

What fateful mistakes can we make when writing a CV? What can exclude us immediately?

I definitely consider bad photography a fatal mistake. It doesn’t have to be in the CV, but if it’s already there, it should be a professional photo. I already got a resume where the lady with the boa was. Another fatal mistake can be a larger number of spelling mistakes and the use of Europass-type templates for creative jobs.

When you look at a CV from the position of HR or manager, what information is important to you? Which criteria determine whether you invite a candidate for an interview?

For the first time, the CV reads very quickly, it’s called skimming. Basically, in six seconds, I can find what I’m looking for. I look at the key skills, the key achievements the candidate has achieved in previous jobs, and then his experience as such. Was he in one job all the time? Fluctuated? Or is it nicely laid out?

Many people will now be forced to look for work in another field. How can a candidate in a CV compensate for minimal or zero practice?

Definitely training courses in the field, whether those accredited or those on online platforms. I also recommend arranging an internship to supplement the internship, for example in the form of shading a specific person or in the form of consultations with an expert in that particular field. And of course to mention it in your CV.

Which candidate is the human resources more happy about? From a candidate who went through a dozen job positions but only worked for each year? Or from a candidate who has experience with only one job, where he was ten years old?

I don’t think any of these candidates are completely ideal and neither will make a HR or a manager happy. It wants balance. When one is in one job for too long, it means that one does not like change, so it can be difficult to adapt. On the other hand, for some positions, stability may be welcome. And for a candidate who changes jobs frequently, it depends on why they change it and whether they remain in one field at least.

How would you encourage all those who are looking for a new job during the economic crisis?

I rather have advice. If people don’t want to stay home for long, they should tweak their CV, because it’s their sales tool that allows them to stand out in the crowd. A lot of people will say, too, so now I’ll take a break. But finding a job takes a long time. Even in times of abundance. Therefore, it is better to start looking for a job right away.


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