In this final part of the CV writing series, I’ll show you what else should be included in your CV as well as few things that should be left out.
Firstly, what does need to be there. So far, you should have your name and contact details followed by a brief personal statement. You’ll also have your employment and skills. The main thing that is still missing is your education, so let’s start there.
List only the most recent and relevant pieces of education. Some people simply put the highest completed qualification, which is perfectly fine.
List things in reverse chronological order. This means that you need to put the most recent item at the top of the list and work backwards from there. The same applies when listing your employment history too.
You do not have to purely stick to qualifications in this section either. If, whilst at school, college or university, you were in a group or society, mention it. If you held a position of responsibility such as prefect, class rep or student ambassador, mention it.
ABCD University, BA (Hons) English, 2:1 2015 to 2018
Member of the LGBTQ student society and student rep.
The Big School, 3 A levels at grades A-B 2013 to 2015
Duke of Edinburgh Award Group and swimming team member.
You’ll notice that I haven’t listed every subject and every grade individually, but this is an option if you wish. It does depend a lot upon your personal preferences as well as the requirements f the employer. If the job advert has specifically asked for someone with at least A level Maths and you have this, then definitely mention it. You’ll also notice in the example above that I haven’t mentioned GCSEs. Again, unless you are doing a role that specifically asks for them, if you have a degree there’s no need to go back as far as GCSEs.
The Big School, A levels in English Language (A), Psychology (B) and Geography (C) 2018 to 2020
Completed Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award and competed for the school swimming team.
The Little School, 11 GCSEs at grades A to C including English, Maths and Science 2013 to 2018 Prefect and competed for the school swimming team.
How you lay these out on the page is up to you, but remember to include where you went, what you studied and the dates. There is no need to list every GCSE subject separately as this takes up a lot of valuable space. Mention key subjects and your range of grades only.
Hobbies, achievements and interests
To include or not to include, that is the question! And the answer is… it’s up to you. Some employers will tell you that these things have no bearing on your ability to do a job and are of no interest to them on your CV. Others may say that it shows them a bit more about you, your personality and what motivates you.
I would say only include if it’s a bit different, you’ve achieved a high level or it’s directly relevant to the role.
So do not include the following type of things: socialising with friends, reading, going to the cinema, working out at the gym.
Do include things such as: Captain of volleyball team for 3 seasons and club committee member, raised £500 for the NHS by cycling from London to Brighton, amateur photographer with photos published in ABC online magazine.
No need to include these on your CV. You do not even need to add ‘references available upon request’. The employer knows that, you’re stating the obvious and using up valuable space.
CV or Curriculum Vitae
There’s no need to write this at the top of the page. The employer can recognise a CV when they see one, you don’t need to label it for them.
Personal details and photo
Things like date of birth, marital status, gender, nationality are not necessary on a CV. The same applies for your photo. They have no bearing on your ability to do a job and therefore do not need to be included. There is always an exception to every rule and occasionally, depending upon the employer and the role, you may need to add your nationality.
It’s also important to mention here, that I am talking about a CV for the UK job market. CVs in other countries do differ and may well require you to include a photo and /or personal details. So please check the protocol for the country you’re applying to work in.
Get in touch
If you have any questions about CVs please get in touch me at firstname.lastname@example.org, via Facebook or by commenting below. If you want me to check your CV for you or to write it for you, please check out the services I offer and select the one that suits your needs best. I look forward to hearing from you.