What to Include on the Perfect CV

Is there a perfect CV?

A Curriculum Vita, shortened to CV or vita, is a short-written summary of a person’s career, qualifications and education.

What to Include on the Perfect CV

As a Recruiter, I encounter numerous applications and CVs for the same job advertisement. It is my job to determine which candidates are suitable for the role, and whether or not the company is the correct match for you.

With unemployment rates at the highest they have been in a decade, there are so many well-qualified, experienced people currently job-hunting. With so much competition, you want to ensure that your CV is interesting, informative and portrays the best, most accurate version of your professional self.

The non-negotiables

These are the essential guidelines to follow when writing a CV.

I have highlighted 4 tips on how to format a standout CV below.

 1.Looks DO Matter

  • It is true what they say about employers scanning CVs in a matter of seconds, first-impressions count and are especially important. Calibri, Times New Roman and Arial are the most popular choices for a CV, and with good reason – they look professional and are available on all Windows devices. Size 12pt font is best, with line spacing set to 1.0 or 1.15 to ensure your CV is easy to read and avoids an over-crowded appearance.

2.Consistency is Key

  •  Double-check that all of your font is the same size, colour and spacing throughout.
  • Another mistake which will deduct points from your CV is inconsistent punctuation. When writing bullet points, either include full-stops at the end of all of your sentences or none of them.
  • TIP: sometimes Microsoft Word automatically creates a hyper-link when you type an email address. Highlight, right click and remove hyperlink. This changes the font back to black and removes the bold and underline.

3.Protect Your Information

  • Your CV should not reveal your age or date of birth. Very simply, this is to protect you from discrimination based on your age.
  • I personally would not recommend putting a photograph of yourself on your CV, again you do not want someone discriminating due to your appearance.
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV) roughly translates from Latin as “course of life”. It should contain what you have achieved and experienced, not matters of chance such as age, gender, and appearance – unless they are actually relevant.

4.Start from your most recent experience and work back.

  •  Always use reverse chronological order when writing about your Education and Work Experience.
  • As a recruiter, it would not make sense for me to scroll to the bottom of every CV to find the most relevant information, which is why you should include it first!
  • Start with your current or most recent education, including relevant qualifications gained and work your way back.
  • Primary education should not be included on a CV.
  • TIP: If you are still waiting for results, write “results pending”. Example:

Queen’s University Belfast                                        Date: Sept 2018 – Present

Bachelor of Arts with Honours, English Literature. Results Pending May 2021.

  • Likewise, start with your current work experience and move backwards. Include the month and year of when you started working with each company, and your job title.


Part 2 of how to write the Perfect CV will continue in my next blog.

If you need further information or help with your CV, please contact me by emailing cm@cathymoranrecruitment .com