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Three CV mistakes to avoid

Beyond the obvious—such as poor spelling, unprofessional email address and fabricated career history—these are the faux pas you should seek to avoid when writing your Curriculum Vitae.

1. Long lists of skills

Many candidates, particularly in technical disciplines like engineering or IT, assume that all companies and recruiters rely entirely on ‘parsing’ technology and don’t actually read the CV. This can result in huge lists of every process or package they’ve ever worked with, which does the candidate no favours. Often hiring managers are more interested in ‘softer skills’ or competencies.

2. A photograph

Depending on your industry this may not harm your job prospects (marketing/sales or other client-facing roles may appreciate the headshot) but it is generally fine to let the hiring manager see what you look like when it comes to interview.

3. Wordy intros

Despite common belief, most hiring managers won’t appreciate your executive summary. The intro paragraph many candidates choose to include in their CV is often essentially a meaningless list of management buzzwords that take up space and don’t say much about the job seeker’s true goals or interests.

In essence, while a CV needs to include all of your selling points, a strong one will do just that—get to the point. The art is as much about what to leave out as what to include.