Having a sparkling CV that clearly highlights your best qualities, skills and experiences to a potential employer can make the difference when an opportunity knocks. CTMfile spoke to Mike Richards, founder of The Treasury Recruitment Company, about how to make sure your CV will stand out in the recruitment process. Here are four tips from that conversation that will help improve your chances of success when going for the next corporate treasury role:
1. Are you a 'painkiller'?
Advertised positions can receive hundreds of applications and your CV has about six seconds to make an impact before it's deleted. One of the quickest ways to save your CV from the bin is to make it very clear that you have the right skills and experience to solve the employer's problems. So you need to identify the new employer's 'pain points' and you can do this by using the job advert or by researching the company. Then make sure your CV – and covering letter – demonstrate clearly that you can help them to solve that problem. Richards gives an example of a company undergoing a treasury transformation: “They'll need to know that you can cope with that and you can help them. Underline which systems you've used or how you've taken a project from A to B or how much money you've saved.”
2. Don't be a generalist
Too many people make general statements at the top of their CVs, such as claiming to be a “flexible, motivated individual”. Richards says: “Well aren't we all!” He advises that it's a far better approach to identify your own strengths and then apply those to the role in question, explaining how you would be able to help if hired. It's also important to tailor your CV to the job in hand – because recruiters really want to know how you can help them (with their pain points, as above).
3. Tell an interesting story
It's important to create a narrative with your CV – which means show how you started your career, why you made certain career and education choices and how you have grown and developed. Tell the potential employer how you got to where you are today and make them interested in meeting you in person – which is the whole point of a CV. It's just a hook to getting that all-important face-to-face meeting/interview. Also be clear (and realistic) about what you want in your next role.
4. Get the basics right
Last but not least: it goes without saying that your profile/CV/resume needs to be thoroughly spell-checked. It's strongly advisable to get a second pair of eyes to read through – so ask a friend or colleague. Also consider the format of the CV and how it looks – be consistent in using one type of font and text sizing, and don't overuse boxes. The CV needs to be easy to read and easy on the eye – so ensure there are no date gaps, use a professional email address and use bullet points to summarise key skills and experience. The perfect length? Two or three pages is fine, even four if necessary, but one is probably too short.
You can see the full WEBchat with Mike Richards here: How to create a stand-out CV/resume.
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