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  • Your CV should be neat, the best standard in content and layout
  • A good format is A4, ideally in Microsoft WORD format
  • Adding a cover letter will give recruiters a better understanding about your background
  • Don’t add a photo of yourself

What to include

There is no set format. How you present your CV is up to you. However, you should include at least the following:
– your name
– your address
– your phone number
– your email address
– your career history
– online professional profiles like LinkedIn

Put your most recent job first and include start and end dates. Employers will be more interested in what you have done recently. Don’t leave gaps between dates, because employers will want to know what you did during those periods. If there are any, make sure you explain temporary, holiday, part-time or voluntary employment periods.

A personal profile

  • This is a short statement at the beginning of your CV to sell yourself, to show your skills, experience and personal qualities. You could include positive words such as ‘competent’, ‘adaptable’, and ‘conscientious’.
  • Tailor the statement to the requirements of each position that you apply for. Make it clear to the employer that you’re the right person for the position.


  • Mention things you did well in previous roles which could be relevant to the position you’re applying for.

Qualifications and training

  • Include any qualifications and training from previous roles (for example, training in health and safety or a certificate in food hygiene). Put the most recent first, and include qualifications you got from school or college.


  • These can support your application if your hobbies and leisure activities highlight responsibilities and skills that are relevant to the job you’re applying for. Perhaps you belong to a club or society which you organise activities for, or you use leadership skills or teamwork as part of the activity.

Other information

  • It is up to you whether to include this, but it can be helpful if there are gaps in your CV. If you had a career break because you were caring for children or elderly relatives, make this a positive thing. Think about the skills you used doing this. If the position you’re applying for is different from what you’ve done in the past, explain why you’re interested in the new type of work.


  • It’s good to have two or more people who can provide a work or personal reference. Ideally, one should be your most recent employer. If you haven’t worked for a while it could be someone who has known you for a long time. It should be someone who can comment on your qualities in relation to the position. You should ask the person to agree to this beforehand.
  • It is not necessary to get the actual reference from them in writing and attach this to your CV – just add their contact details on your CV to be contactable should your new/prospective employer want to obtain a reference from them.
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