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Construction CV

Get Your Construction CV Right

Construction CV

With the recent revival in commercial construction projects around the country, construction professionals should be updating their CVs in anticipation of new opportunities for site engineers, quantity surveyors, project managers and other similar disciplines.

 

With over 10 years’ experience in recruiting for the construction industry here are some CV tips for those looking for a change.

 

Don’t be a slave to the 2 page CV

Construction professionals with over 10 years’ experience will more than likely need more room to describe duties in detail (e.g. not all project managers do the same thing) and also relevant projects. If you are applying to a company specialising in refurbishment works, you’ll naturally want to mention any similar projects you have been involved in. If this takes 2.5 or 3 pages it’s not an issue once you are being consistently relevant in the CV.

 

Explain gaps

Some construction candidates leave out 6 month or year-long gaps which they feel are irrelevant; however a brief explanation is generally helpful to an employer reviewing the document. For example a year travelling in Australia with some labouring on building sites can indicate to an employer that you understand the industry from another angle and are willing to “get your hands dirty” in a role.

 

Avoid cross-referencing

We often receive CVs where a candidate has one section as a career history and another separate section with a list of projects, sometimes not labelled by time frame or employer.

Prospective employers have to cross reference and go back and forth in the CV to get the full context. A better approach would be to briefly list these projects along with the employer and your duties in the employment section. This makes it much easier for a recruiter or employer to understand your experience quickly and coherently.

 

Employer names may need context

Engineers and Project Managers coming back to Ireland from Australia or the Middle East may have companies named but not identified or explained as a contractor, client, design company and so on. A busy employer might not want to take the time to look up the company so it’s advisable to include even one or two brief lines on the type of company, scale and typical projects.

 

E.g. “ABC Ltd is a Queensland based mechanical and electrical installation contractor specialising in healthcare projects”. This is the type of information which might tip a CV slightly over 2 pages but is well worth it.

 

 

Attention to detail

This is an old one but still comes up. In recent months one of our clients flatly rejected a CV for a contracts administration position because there were 2 typos in the CV. Make sure you check spelling and basic grammar in the CV.

 

Richard Walsh is happy to speak to construction professionals at all levels about CVs, jobs and other topics of interest – rwalsh@sigmar.ie

Posted by Richard Walsh, Manager Technical Recruitment on 4 December 2017

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