Avoid these pitfalls to make your CV stand out
Your Curriculum Vitae ('CV' or 'Resume') is a vital part of your job hunting toolkit. However, a lot of the advice you might have received at school or university might already be out of date - or even worse, might be counterproductive in an international setting! Here are some commonly accepted 'truths' about CVs that could lead you down the wrong path.
#1 No Headshots!
In the UK adding a photograph of yourself is considered a risky move - many recruiters will simply bin your application for fear of being influenced by a protected characteristic (e.g. gender, disabilities) that could be apparent from your picture. However, in many business cultures a headshot is a necessity - so far as most students will take the opportunity to have a professional portrait taken! Adding a headshot will however be useful in the following countries: Germany, France, Spain (although becoming less common)
#2 Beauty is in the eye of the beholder
While it's tempting to spend a lot of time making your Resume look just right, it might not be the best use of your time - as recruiters begin to make more use of machine learning to filter applicants it's likely your Resume will be parsed and searched for keywords. Make sure then that the format you save still allows the text to be extracted legibly. You can try this yourself using an online PDF to text extractor.
#3 Too Much Information
You'll have heard not to include your age, date of birth or marital status on your Resume. In the UK this is largely true; your education and experience will speak for itself. However, a few countries still expect this information by convention. This can be a potential minefield, so make sure to check carefully before you submit your application
#4 Saying a lot with a little
Your CV is your way to put your best foot forward - be sure to use active language and keywords that highlight your strengths and skills. Even at the beginning of your career be sure to tailor the language to the market you're trying to reach, and avoid the played-out phrases that feature in the vast majority of Resumes- we're talking about you, 'team player'!