Before entering into an interview situation, we HIGHLY advise that you research your prospective employer as thoroughly as possible. Not only will this increase the chances of your interview being successful, it can also help you decide if the business is a good cultural fit for you, and also offer peace of mind that the company has good intentions. Provide Company Authenticity Allow me to briefly divulge to you a personal experience I’ve had. During my years of studying I was signing up to agencies in the hope of getting some money to help with living expenses. I was contacted by an agency that said a company was looking for assistants to help out in their studio. I went along to the interview and after the usual questions and formalities, I was offered the job on the spot! Amazing right? Well, shortly after I verbally accepted the position, I was informed that before they would send a contract over, I was required to send £500 to the company accounts team to cover any potential ‘damages and expenses’ to equipment inside the studio. Naturally, this was some cause for concern, and long story short, after a quick flick through their online social presence, I found that most of their followers were paid for/bots and the company address listed on their website was actually a room above a laundrette 50 miles from where it should be! It is the unfortunate truth that there are some undesirables who will pray on the good intentions of jobseekers by offering opportunities in industries that are traditionally challenging to enter. Prior research into a company that has contacted you will provide peace of mind that the company exercises lawful practices and that their business is authentic and genuine. In the case of my own experience, it's certainly a rare occurrence, but unfortunately, not an impossibility. Is The Company Right For You? The average person will work for around 37.5 hrs pw, some more and some less. This is a long time to be spent at the workplace, so in order to avoid any negative feelings or resentment towards work developing, you must make sure that the company’s culture aligns with your own. Ask yourself the following questions, am I able to complete the level of work required, can I work within company deadlines, am I able to handle the demands of my role, can I adhere to the company's work location i.e. work remotely, in office or hybrid? All these things will help you determine whether you can meet the demands of the role and perform consistently. Demonstrates an Interest in the Company As an employee of a company, you will be expected to act in a way that reflects the company’s best interests and core values. Employers will be looking for candidates in interviews that they feel best resonate with their core company ethics and philosophy. Demonstrating knowledge of the company’s history and expansion and recognising its achievements and accolades is sure to impress your potential employers. It conveys your own passion for the brand and desire to be a part of a company’s growth. This will help show your employer that you are committed to the future of the company and intend to work within the business for a long time. It helps you prepare meaningful questions Now you may have seen a post on our knowledge centre about questions you should ask your interviewer. These are all tried and tested ways to go the extra mile in an interview by seeking additional insight about your employer and demonstrating an interest in the company ethos. However, if you truly want to go above and beyond to impress your interviewer, mould your questions in such fashion that they directly relate to the business. Example: I recognise the company’s overall mission is X. But can you share some of the company's short and long-term goals during the next 3 years. What part would I play in helping the business to achieve these targets? Formulating your questions about matters directly concerning the company shows your employers you are eager to become an asset to the business. This will also provide an opportunity to match the business goals with your own! It can help you learn more about the industry If you’ve decided that you need a change in your career path and want to pursue a role in a different industry, research into a company can help provide insight into what the work actually entails and how the industry and company itself operates. Learning the ins and outs, the rough and the smooth of the job you’re looking to apply for will help you make the right decision for both your career and wellbeing. If a company advertises a fast-paced quick response attitude, will you be able to keep up? Similarly, if the role operates within both high-pressure and relaxed periods of work, are you ok with an irregular balance of fast and slow-paced environments? Researching the company and role you wish to pursue will help answer some of these questions that should always be considered when trying something new. In Conclusion As you can see, there are many benefits to researching your employer. Prospective employers are always going to be looking for candidates that will go the extra mile, so this is good practice into the mindset of always going one step further to impress and prove why you are an important asset to any team.
"So, do you have any further questions you’d like to ask us?" Yes. Yes, you do! This part of the interview is a very clever way employers can gauge your interest in their company, and briefly switches the ‘Question and Answer’ roles associated with the interviewer and candidate. Of course, when presented with this question, your initial answer would be no. I mean, you’ve just spoken about the role and the job for the last 45 minutes, no doubt outlining your various experiences, skillset, responsibilities, salary expectations and company history. So, all bases should have been covered right? INCORRECT! Employers aren’t looking to hire somebody that simply performs the bare minimum of work and walks away with the pay, they want to see your passion for their business, your recognition of its achievements, and your desire to help the company grow. Here are some questions to ask at the end of the interview that will provide further insight into the culture of the company, whilst conveying further interest in the role to your employer. What Are The Plans For The Business In The Next 3 Years? This is a great question that shows not only your commitment to the company but also the development of the business. In an ever-changing, ever-evolving market, asking this question to your employer shows that you demonstrate a knowledge and an awareness that a business’ longevity rests on its ability to move with the times, never settle in one place and constantly expand and grow within the field. This can also provide a heads up on any major upcoming projects and will give you a general idea about job security. Can You Describe The Working Culture Of The Organisation? Asking this question is a good way to assess the working environment of the company and whether you’ll fit in. You will learn how the company prioritises employee happiness and wellbeing, the work-life balance, and any benefits rewarded to employees on behalf of the company. If I Were To Be Successful, What Advice Or Resources Would You Recommend That Would Help Me Prepare For This Role Further Be careful how you word this question, as you don’t want to come across as arrogant and that the interview is a foregone conclusion. However, this is a great question to ask for both yourself and your interviewer, as it will show them that you are keen to perform in the role to the best of your ability. It also provides you with resources to help you prepare for employment so the first few weeks of work are less daunting, and you can start your new job feeling prepared. Will There Be Opportunity To Progress Further Down The Line? This question shows your employer that you have ambition, and you are conscious of your further career goals. Knowledge about opportunities to progress within the company will provide scope and allow you to look forward to the future. You don’t want to realise too late that there is little to no scope of progression into new roles and responsibilities, or that the only way to ascend the company ladder is to wait for somebody higher up to leave. Can You Describe A Typical Day or Week In The Job? Asking this question will provide an opening to address any queries or concerns you have found while reading the job description. Maybe a certain task wasn’t presented clearly, or you want to find more specifics when the job description alludes to a ‘variety of responsibilities.’ You’re going to want to know exactly what will be expected of you on a day-to-day basis, so you are prepared for what each week of work entails. Some interviewers will respond to this question by saying ‘Every day is different.’ In this instance, your best bet is to politely push for an answer by providing a period of time to draw experience from. Can you tell me more about what the last month looked like for the person in the job currently? What took up most of their time? In Conclusion It is impossible to cram every single piece of information into a job interview, so there will always be a question you can ask your employer at the interview's conclusion. We will follow up this blog post with some more questions soon, however, those aforementioned are a great way to learn more about the company you’ll be working for, what is expected of you, and the plans to grow the business, whilst also conveying your own excitement to be a part of that journey!
Whether you have been working in the same company for several years, or if you’ve been working within a wide array of industries in a variety of roles, at some point, we have all experienced the ‘Job Interview.’ We each have our own experiences with job interviews, some good, and some, unfortunately, less so. Interviews can be a very daunting concept, with the mounting pressure that the next step of your professional career hangs on the balance of your performance within the next 30–60 minutes. However, like many challenges in life, this process can be made significantly less stressful and much more successful with the right amount of preparation. Therefore, we have compiled a list of some of the most popular questions that an employer will ask you during an interview, and crucially, what the employer is hoping to learn about you from the answer you give. Familiarise yourself with how you should approach each question and the traps you could fall into. Think of ways you can apply the given examples to your own experience and you’re sure to leave your next interview feeling full of confidence. Tell me a little bit about yourself and what has led you to applying for this role? What may on the surface seem a relatively innocuous question, it is actually one of, if not the most important question of the interview. This is most likely the first time you and your potential employer will be sat face to face, and they are going to want to see how you hold yourself, convey information and how you act when meeting new people. Answers given may also provide openings to further conversation, though try not to waffle. My advice would be to give a brief overview of your education and relevant experience, the moment, or ‘thing’ that attracted you to this particular industry and a ‘golden skill’ that has allowed you to become successful in your working life. Wrap this answer up with your career goal and its close link to the role that you are being interviewed for and you will have provided a very strong introduction to your interviewers. Can you describe your Strengths and Weaknesses? This question can prove to be somewhat of a ‘gotcha’ moment in the interview if you are not prepared, as the interviewer will not only be interested in your direct response to this question, but the manner in which you address it: Strengths The key thing to keep in mind when answering this question is to not come across as boastful or arrogant. Of course, you are going to want to sell yourself as the perfect candidate for the job, however there is a fine line between providing relevant skills vs listing your long and attributed list of accolades. Employers will be looking for skills relevant to the role, so study the job description and focus on three key qualities you possess that can be directly applied to the role. Make sure to give relevant examples too! Weaknesses Despite what the word weakness implies, you’re going to want to avoid being too negative when providing this answer. The key when answering this question, is to let the employer know that you have recognised an area of personal weakness, and that you are taking steps to improve upon this so that it will no longer hinder your performance at work. It is important to give examples of the steps you have taken to improve, show your current progress, and emphasize that your progress has been acknowledged. Example – I would say my greatest weakness, is the fact that I sometimes find it quite hard asking other people for help. I tend to try and figure things out for myself, instead of asking the people in my team for guidance, which would be a faster way of working. Having said that, I am seeking to improve on this, and have since become more mindful of situations where this may occur in the future. Why do you want to work for us? This is a great opportunity to convey your passion and interest in not just the role, but the company as a whole. Preparation for this question is key, as knowledge of a company’s history, practices and its various accolades that have incentivised you to apply for this position, shows an employer that you acknowledge the companies’ key practices, ethics and progression within the industry. Discuss how this particular role is best suited to your own particular set of skills, and that your values and goals are aligned with those of your employer. What are your salary expectations? This question is almost certain to come up at some point, and if you aren’t prepared, it can cause a moment of panic in an interview. You don’t want to price yourself out of the job by asking for a salary that is too high, neither do you want to undervalue yourself and end up getting paid a lesser amount than what you could, or should, be working for. In order to avoid an uneasy atmosphere, prepare your response in advance. Research similar roles within the field and look out for consistencies in pay. The job you’re applying for may even have a listed salary attached to the description. We here at Sigmar prepare a yearly salary guide that covers many different roles in a wide range of industries. Take a look at this year’s guide, it will give you a good starting point when considering the salary being offered to you. This link will take you to our Sigmar Salary Guide: https://www.sigmarrecruitment.com/blog/2022/02/salary-guide-2022 How would you deal with potential conflict in the workplace? This question is an open door to an employer for assessing your level of emotional intelligence. By demonstrating your capacity for empathy, and your understanding of different personality types, you will show that you are highly emotionally intelligent, and understanding that ‘teamwork makes the dream work.’ However, you will want to be mindful of not appearing overly negative when answering this question. Generally, negativity should be avoided during an interview, however, like our assessment of the question regarding personal weakness, there are ways to address negative issues in a constructive way. Key points in the right direction are to lead with empathy and compassion, focus on your own subjective experience without pointing out flaws in others, and replace ‘but’ with ‘and,’ which deescalates a conversation from an argument to a discussion. In Conclusion Of course, we have only covered a select few questions in this post, and no doubt you will have come across one or two more ‘repeat questions’ in different interviews. We will be exploring further interview questions in later posts, however, these 5 questions are certainly amongst the more popular questions interviewers will pose to you, so preparing you’re answers to these will certainly increase your chances of a successful interview.
It only takes somebody between 6–30 seconds to form an opinion of someone they’ve met for the first time, and job interviews are no exception. We’ve all heard the phrase ‘actions speak louder than words’ and though it has become somewhat of a cliché, utilising this information can determine your success in an interview. So, you’ve researched your employer, practiced your responses to typical questions, arrived on time and appear neat and well groomed. Here is how to make the best first impression, along with some dos and don’ts to be mindful of during the interview: The First 30 Seconds Enter The Room With Confidence This will likely be the first time the interviewer sees you (unless they have greeted you upon entering the building), so make sure you appear as professional as possible. Don’t slowly open the door, nervously poke your head around and tippy toe over to your seat with your eyes locked to the floor. Stand up straight, open the door and walk in with calm confidence and good posture. Offer an initial greeting as you enter, such as a ‘Good Morning’ or ‘Hello there it’s nice to meet you,’ and rather than turn your back to the people in the room as you close the door, use your less dominant hand to close the door behind you whilst maintaining eye contact. Walk over confidentially to shake your interviewer’s hand or take your seat if you are prompted to do so. The Handshake Mastering the perfect professional handshake is a key skill you will utilise at many points in your professional career, though its important to neither be too forceful or too submissive. An overly aggressive handshake can come across as trying to hard, yet a weak handshake conveys a lack of confidence. Keep your handshake firm, but don’t crush their fingers, maintain eye contact and smile. Eventually you will develop the muscle memory needed when applying the correct amount of assertiveness for a handshake, but in the meantime, it never hurts to practice with a friend or relative. As You Sit Down Under no circumstances should you simply slump into your seat like a sack of potatoes. This shows a general ‘I’d rather be anywhere but here’ attitude, which of course will negatively impact your interviewer’s perception of you. As you sit down, keep your back straight and tuck your chair in if you are sitting at a table. During the interview Posture Maintain good posture but stay relaxed and try not to fidget. Don’t appear too rigid or stiff, as this shows you’re ‘on edge’ or trying too hard to look a certain way. When you’re sat up straight, imagine there’s a circle around your head, and try to keep your head inside this circle. If you lean back too far into your seat, you appear disinterested or too relaxed, but if you lean too far forward, it can come across as somewhat intense, or that you are trying too hard to seem engaged in what the interviewer is saying. It is OK to lean forward slightly ever so often, as it shows that you are listening, but don’t overdo it. Appear Open DO NOT CROSS YOUR ARMS! If there is any bigger indication that somebody is nervous, reserved, or holding back, I have yet to discover it. It is best to keep the hands on your lap or position your arms either at your sides or on the table. Avoid twiddling your thumbs or touching your hair or face. All of these are your body’s unconscious efforts to shy away from a situation. Remember to show confidence and that you are at ease with the situation. It’s fine to gesticulate when giving answers, but don’t go overboard. Smile A job interview can make anyone nervous, and recruiters seldom employ miserable people. The simple fix is to just smile. A smile can lower the stress levels and make you feel more relaxed. You will look comfortable, personable and ultimately, more likeable. The Eyes We have addressed the importance of maintaining eye contact without staring into your employer’s soul, however, when not maintaining eye contact, your eyes can give away more than you realise. Typically, when a person looks to their right while formulating a response, they are creating an artificial construct i.e., creating something that they haven’t seen or heard before. On the flipside, if they look to the left, they are recalling information about something they’ve seen or heard. A lot of these are unconscious movements that the body makes in a reaction to formulating a response and can be difficult to control, namely casting eyes to either relevant sides of the brain that deal with memory or imagination. However, the best way to avoid this happening is to simply prepare your responses to common interview questions in advance, so as not to be tripped up by a question you weren’t expecting. At the End of the Interview Don't Appear Rushed Your behaviour here will confirm your interviewer’s final perception of you, so quickly scrambling out of your seat, gathering your things and bolting out of the door is a sure fire way to leave a bad lasting impression. It makes you look like you just can’t wait to get out of there and breathe again. Instead, try to leave as confidently as you entered. Offer a final handshake and thank your interviewer for their time and express gratitude for the opportunity. If everybody is leaving the room together, match their pace and offer to hold the door if they aren’t already holding it open for you. Offer a final goodbye as you turn to exit the building. It’s worth bearing in mind that you may be watched as you walk out of the building, so try not to break composure and stride just yet! In Conclusion Ok so we’ve covered A LOT here, and you may finish this article with even more things to worry about than before. However, if you take one thing away from this, it’s that the simple way to avoid giving a negative impression to your interviewer is to remain calm, composed and confident. Should you worry that things are going astray, just remind yourself that your employer has chosen to interview you, so they are already impressed and think you are a good fit for the role. Remember to be open and polite, and you’re sure to walk away with a smile on your face.
Rossa Mullally spoke to Jennifer Zamperelli on 2FM recently to share his tips and advice for video interviews...
With the number of companies around the globe asking their employees to stay safe and work from home increasingly every day due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in-person interviews are being replaced with video interviews via platforms such as Hinterview, Microsoft Teams, Zoom etc. For some this is a new experience so here are our top 5 tips to help you get prepared. 1. Check Your Tech As mentioned, there are a variety of video interview platforms, many of which you may be familiar with such as Google Hangouts or Skype. While you might think you are adept at using such platforms, don’t rest on your laurels. When you receive the link for the platform from your potential employer - test it out! Familiarise yourself with the platform and do a test call with a family member or friend in advance. Make sure you have a strong internet connection so there are no delays and that your camera and microphone are working perfectly. Finally make sure you are plugged into a power source; interviews can overrun so don’t be relying on the battery to see you through. 2. Set the Scene You’ve heard it before, and you’ll hear it again but finding a suitable environment is so important in preparing for your video interview. Find a quiet, private space to do the interview, somewhere you can control the noise pollution and keep it to a minimum. After that choose, your backdrop wisely. You don’t want potential employers to see your cluttered bedroom and dirty washing in the background, especially after listing ‘organisational skills’ as one of your top skills on your CV. Lighting is key and is often forgotten about until the time of the interview. For the best lighting, sit facing an open window, similar to how you would face the light source or sun for photgraphs. If there is no natural light available to you at the time, use floor and desk lamps to brighten up your environment and ensure your interviewer can see you clearly. 3. Dress to Impress Although your employer won’t see you face to face, it is still important to dress appropriately. It is always a good idea to investigate the company’s dress code and go from there. You should wear professional, interview-appropriate clothes that you feel comfortable in. If you are comfortable in what you are wearing, it will help you stay relaxed and at ease during your interview. Avoid plaids and stripes as these can cause distractions on the camera and make sure you avoid wearing the same colour as your chosen background. 4. Body Language Speaks A Thousand Words It’s important to have good eye-contact in any interview you attend, this is no different for a video interview. To maintain good eye contact during your interview, place your laptop, webcam or device at eye level. If your camera is too low or too high, it can appear to your employer that you are looking down or away. It is also important to look into the camera when speaking. Putting a coloured sticker or something noticeable beside the camera might help remind you to speak into the camera instead of the screen. Some gestures that often go unnoticed in face to face interviews, can be more eye-catching through video, for example twirling hair, touching your face or fidgeting with your fingers. Practicing interviews and video calls with friends or family will help you identify any nervous habits you may have. During the interview, it is important to sit upright with your back straight. Although the interviewer cannot see your lower body, it’s important to have two feet flat on the floor in order to maintain an upright position. Crossing your legs can lead to slouching and can mess with your on-camera framing. 5. Prepare to Win You want to make a great first impression, leaving the interviewer with the desire to move you to the next round or hire you and the key to achieving this is to be prepared. From software to attire, eye contact to setting, it’s essential to prepare in every aspect for your interview. Have a copy of your CV nearby, but do not get caught reading off it during your interview, keep it nearby as a reference for yourself. Have a pen and paper at your desk should you need it to avoid any disruptions during the interview. And don’t forget to nod, smile and engage with your interviewer - you might not be sitting across from each other, but they can still see you! Finally, be patient with the recruitment process. As the COVID-19 outbreak evolves, recruitment processes may take longer than normal. You may find there will be more rounds in a process and/or it may take longer to receive feedback. If you would like to discuss anything in this article, or have a confidential career chat, please get in touch on 01 4744600 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Recruitment agencies see hundreds of people pass through their doors on a weekly basis. However not all candidates show up prepared. Truth is you will get a lot more out of meeting with a recruiter if you spend some time preparing and thinking about what your next ideal career move is. At the same time, you also want to impress a recruitment consultant, as a consultant is only going to want to put forward the best candidates to their clients. So, with that in mind, here are some tips to keep in mind when meeting your consultant; Meeting a Recruitment Consultant is not an interview, but it kind of is… Meeting your recruitment consultant will be informal compared to a real interview. The recruitment consultant wants to meet face to face to chat about your experience and what you’re looking for and discuss any opportunities they have available. However, even though your recruitment consultant isn’t the person who is going to hire you, they have relationships with people who could. You should treat your meeting like it’s an interview. Act professional and do your best to impress this person who has the power to get you the job you want. Dress Formally… For minimal effort, dressing to impress is important. Even if your office attire isn’t formal usually, dress smart (ideally formal but smart casual as a minimum) when meeting your consultant. This says to your consultant that you are taking your job hunt seriously and it also reassures the consultant you will present yourself well to their clients in interview. Be on Time for the Meeting… Again, consultants are assessing you to see if you are suitable to present to their clients. Being late screams unreliable and they will question whether you would do the same for a client interview. On time suits recruiters best because they usually have back to back meetings and being too early or late will put their entire schedule under pressure. Be Prepared… Even though it’s an informal chat, you should still be prepared and be confident speaking about your experience. Checking over your CV to be sure or saying you don’t remember won’t make your recruitment consultant confident that you can present yourself well in an interview with their client. Don’t be Afraid to be Honest… The more information you give your recruitment consultant, the better understanding they will have of your career aspirations and goals and in turn they will be able to provide you with positions you are interested in applying for. Inform them of your priorities (salary, benefits, location, title, culture etc.) and what you are and are not flexible on. Knowing this information will prevent you being presented with opportunities you are not interested in. Follow Up… At the end of your meeting with a recruitment consultant, they will present you with open positions for you to consider applying for. Ideally, they’ll all be perfect for you but if not, don’t be afraid to let your recruiter know. Give them feedback and stay in touch with them, in some cases a recruiter can become a lifelong career advocate. If you want to get the most out of your meeting with your recruitment consultant, always come prepared. Not only with it impress the recruiter, but it will get you one step closer to finding your perfect job.
We asked some of our recruitment consultants to tell us their key tips on what makes a good CV.Here’s 20 things to keep in mind before sending out your CV:1. Details & NumbersThe more detail you give about your work history the easier it is for a recruiter/hiring manager to understand your experience, and know if you are suited to a particular role.Fiona Joyce, Recruitment Consultant, Office Support says “Noting ‘Administration’ for example isn’t enough, you need to include the type, volume, systems used, deadlines/timeframes – go into detail. For example, admin support could be basic paper work (scanning, filing, shredding) or it could be high level admin support (diary/calendar management, correspondence and document preparation, report writing etc.). Not going into enough detail is selling yourself short and letting the competition supersede you.”2. Specific TimeframesHiring managers like to see exact timeframes on CVs. Dates on your CV should include month to month time frames, as opposed to year to year. Often people will avoid putting dates on a CV or will try to be vague about the dates. This can look suspicious to employers. It’s better to be honest and give reasons for any gaps instead of trying to hide them.3. AchievementsIt’s a good idea to include what you’ve achieved in your professional career. Awards and certificates are very impressive to hiring managers. However, they don’t always have to be job related awards, they can be personal achievements too e.g. completed a marathon, raised money for charity, served on a community or student committee etc. It’s good to show on your CV that you achieve goals outside of work.4. Key SkillsThe key skills area of your CV is very important. Alan McLoughlin, Recruitment Consultant, Insurance and Financial Services says, “Don’t just list your competencies. List your skills and beside each one, explain how you gained that particular skill”.5. Professional DevelopmentIf you’ve completed any online courses or have studied independently, please be sure to include this information on your CV. Hiring managers love to see this as it shows both an enthusiasm for learning as well as the ability to work off your own initiative.6. Clarity & StructureStructure your CV so it is easy to read. You can do this by:Arranging your work history and education separately according to date and in chronological order. Keep education and work history in separate sections of the CV.Don’t use borders or tables or strange fonts or pictures/images. Always apply in word format, in standard text form.The formatting should be uniform and consistentIf you’re using bullet points, they should all be the same style and alignmentYou should be consistent in your formatting. If you’re using italics font for each job title and bold font for the name for each organisation you worked for, make sure you do this consistently.7. Leave Out Graphics & ImagesLeave out fancy graphics, complicated formatting and decorative pictures where possible. They just tend to make it more difficult for employers to read. Keep things simple, clear and detailed.8. Visa/Employment Permit StatusFor foreign Nationals your visa Status is crucial! You must specify what visa you have and if there is an expiry date.9. Professional Profile – Don’t waffleYour professional profile should be at start of your CV. Use this section to outline your technical expertise, years of industry experience and qualifications etc. Try to avoid saying things like, “I am hard-working and reliable”.10. Bullet PointsAlways use bullet points where you can. In your duties section and skills section put the information in bullet points rather than a paragraph. This makes it a lot easier to read and for hiring managers to see quickly and clearly what experience you have.11. Contact DetailsYou may just assume that sending your CV via email is enough for an employer to contact you but often CV’s get forwarded around and saved on hard drives so the original email you sent could get lost along with your contacts. Always put your email address and contact number on your CV.12. Targets AchievedSomeone with a track record of achieving goals really impresses managers. Setting and achieving targets shows self-motivation and determination. If you have achieved targets in your work experience make sure to include them in your CV.13. Practical SkillsMake sure to list any practical skills like having a driving license, manual handling certificate or fork lift licence. These skills could be really attractive to an employer, depending on the role you are applying for.14. Tailor your CV to every JobTailor your CV to the job you’re applying for. Don’t regurgitate the same CV for every job. Use the job specifications to guide what you should be mentioning on your CV. 15. Extra-Curricular ActivitiesIf you play sport or music etc. (and you have space on you CV), include your hobbies because they can make you stand out.Alan McLoughlin, Recruitment Consultant, Insurance and Financial Services said “I once read a CV that had “I enjoy hill walking” 3 times. Don’t use irrelevant hobbies when you can use that space for something more useful”.16. Personal Details – Not too PersonalIt’s good to show your personality through your CV and give the hiring manager a sense of who you are but some personal details are too personal for your CV. Avoid putting your relationship status on your CV e.g. married, divorced. It’s irrelevant information and it could affect you negatively.17. Be Aware of LengthThe CV is a recap, not a life story. Keep it brief but comprehensive. Two pages is the norm, but three is OK. Conor Ryan, Recruitment Consultant, Construction says, “If you’re running out of space, you’re either being too specific and waffling or you’re going too far back in your experience. The rule of thumb is that you don’t need to detail roles any further back than 10 – 15 years. Your cut off point will depend on how many roles you’ve had.”18. Balance the InfoMake sure you’re giving the right amount of information for each role. You’d expect to see more duties listed for a role that you’ve spent more time in. Always keep the information on your CV proportionally balanced.19. Tools & SystemsYou should outline which tools/software you’ve worked with previously as most HR managers will run a keywords search so it is important they are listed on your CV.20. Double CheckAlways double-check that the information provided is correct. It’s the last step because it’s always the last thing you do, but it doesn’t make it the least important! You could have followed all the above steps correctly but you left a typo on the first page all because you forgot to double check. Following all the steps but forgetting to double check it could cost you a job. Always double check!We hope you found these tips helpful. If you think you need help with your CV or job searching, you can upload your CV to our website and let one of our 125 specialist recruitment consultants give you the help you need.