Undoubtably, your CV is the powerful weapon in your job finding arsenal. Without it you are just another name or series of ticked (or unticked) boxes.
You need to take full responsibility for your CV as it is how you present yourself to the world, and more importantly, to potential hiring managers.
The quickest way to make an impact is to write a personalised, compelling, and eye-catching personal statement which explicitly states why you are the right person for the role.
A 4-5 sentence paragraph at the top of your CV explaining who you are and why you, out of the 100’s of other applicants, should be selected for the interview is not only important, but essential.
Here are my top 4 tips for writing a personal statement:
1) Sell yourself!
There is no shame in self-promotion, especially as your competitors in the jobs market will be doing exactly the same. Use the personal statement at the top of your CV to highlight your career and personal achievements. List your strengths, successes and any academic or professional achievements which are relevant to the role.
2) Drop the cliché
How many of us are ‘Good Team Players’ or have ‘Excellent Communication Skills’? These sorts of phrases may have sounded new and innovative 15 years ago but these clichéd terms need to be consigned to the dustbin. Consider replacing them with quantifiable skills that can be measured.
3) Get to the point
A personal statement shouldn’t be a long story, rather a punchy and eye-catching ‘headline grabber’. Consider using rich text to highlight emphasise key points.
4) Keep it in the first person
A personal statement written in the third person is just odd. Stop doing it, it sounds weird especially when you have written it yourself.
Here are a two examples of great personal statements that really get to the point:
“I’m a talented and well-connected Strategic Relationship Manager and I have the skills and experiences to help your company achieve its sales goals.
My relationship building with some of the leading UK companies directly benefited by current employer by increasing turnover in the past 3 years by 275%. “
“I’m a certified Network Engineer with 10 years experience working with one of the largest host companies in Europe. I have been instrumental in ensuring my employer met its targets for 99.9% server uptime, resulting in outstanding levels of client retention”
Tom Leavesley is a Director at easyvacancy.com, the flat fee recruitment specialists. He blogs for SayNoToUnemployment.co.uk and has over 15 years experience as a recruitment consultant.